I came home from dancing last night and was checking into to Twitter before bed. One of the people that Twitter said I needed to follow was @ashPEAmama. Instantly my eyes filled with tears and I went to bed with thoughts of Ash on my mind. I woke up this morning with a DM from a caring friend asking about @ashPeamama. My first response was to send a message on Facebook, but then decided that it was a story worth sharing.
In the early days of Twitter, there was a small town community feeling. Ashley was the first person in my Twitter stream to be pregnant, and we laughed and teased her about her visits to the doctor and her constant need to pee. That’s what pregnant people do!
When Ashley went into labor of course it was tweeted, and we all celebrated the birth of her daughter. We followed the progress of that new young life in only the way Ashley could tell it. There were times when I would sit at the computer with tears running down my cheeks from her goofy tweets.
Then one night my phone rang, and I had tears on my cheeks for a different reason. Ashley was killed by a driver who did not stop at a stop sign. I was speechless when @brendajos and @mosqueda called me. You know this was some random person that I had never met. But today, as I write this, it still makes me cry.
The Twitter family rallied, and we raised money for her family, it just seemed the right thing to do. We were all so shell shocked, it was the first death we would experience on Twitter. For me, it’s been the only death and I would like to keep it that way.
When Ashley was pregnant, I made her a small baby quilt and knitted one of the infamous Kandahar bears to go with it. A few months after she died I received a letter in the mail from her sister-in-law with a thank you note that Ashley had written and had not put in the mail yet.
Twittering on the Edge blog 2/4/2008
“I knew it was coming…when I looked at the address on the back of the envelope–Louisiana. I took a deep breath and opened the envelope and read the letter sent by Sue Spencer–Ashley’s sister-in-law. There was a small envelope with a card inside–a thank you card written to me from Ashley.
When our Twitter baby Lucy was born I sent her a hand quilted baby blanket and a Kandahar bear in soft yellow baby yarn. It just seemed the right thing to do. I had a DM from Ashley when the present was received, I knew she was surprised and appreciated the gift.
I know how hectic life can be for a new mom with two children so small. The DM was thanks enough for me…but Ashley thought differently:
Thank you so much for the wonderful surprise package. The baby blanket is one of my favorites and is used the most. The teddy bear she “talks” to, complains to, and allows it to hold her pacifier in. Thanks! –Ashley and Lucy
I know that there are people in my life that shake their head at my *online* friends. I know it’s a hard concept to understand if you’ve never been part of a community of caring and giving people to get this. Someone posted a tweet the other day that seemed so ridiculous to me, “Every Tweet you send is time taken away from your family”. I’m tossing the bullshit flag on that one.