A Cyber Farewell

Tuesday, March 20, 2018

 

Hi Everyone,

The miracle of Cyberspace is that we can connect with people all over the world. Sometimes on-line relationships blossom into close friendships. While we usually don’t get to visit with our CyberFriends as often as we do with our local friends, the heart connection is real. The friendship is real. And when we lose a CyberFriend, we grieve. And that’s what members of the Zenspirations® Create, Color, Pattern, Play FB Group– are doing tonight. Mourning the loss of one of our own.

Gerard Doherty discovered Zenspirations in February of 2017, and quickly became an integral part of our FB group. An Irish calligrapher who loved to make fairy houses and creative projects for his family, Gerard and I shared a love of lettering, and using our work as an expression of our faith. To everyone in our group who shares my sorrow, I hope the memorial above and the design below– which is the first sympathy card I did after I started Zenspirations– will help you remember Gerard.

There are tears streaming down my face; I lost a friend from Cyberspace.

Funny, how someone I never met, became a friend I can’t forget. 

I love this group so much, it makes Facebook worth while.” — Gerard wrote on July 23, 2017, when he posted this ‘dwelling’ design in the Zenspirations® Create, Color, Pattern, Play FB Group. I know he would have enjoyed my new Beloved Word Scripture Journal, and I’m sorry that he didn’t get to see it before he died. Here is a sneak peek at what’s inside.

You can order the book from Amazon, or if you’d prefer a signed copy, order from my webstore. I will sign the first 25 which are ordered.

Spring seems to be a time for new products, and I wanted to let you know that the third collection of Zenspirations Care-Moji stickers, Congrats, is now live in the App Store!  It’s only available for iPhones and iPads, but we just started beta testing the Android version, and I’m hoping that we’ll have a working Android App sometime next month. If you like the stickers, I’d appreciate your leaving a review and/or a comment.

This Saturday, people of all ages will be joining the national teen-led movement, March for Our Lives,  to demand sensible gun control laws. Demonstrations across the country are being led by students from Marjorie Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Florida, where 14 students and 3 teachers were fatally shot, and many others wounded, on Valentine’s Day. Check the March for Our Lives website to find a march in your area.

I’m super proud that my son, who is a freshman at Wake Forest University in Winston-Salem, NC, is one of the organizers of the March for Our Lives event in Winston-Salem. He and his friends are trying to raise money to cover the costs of printing posters, renting sound equipment, and getting shuttle buses to transport students from campus to where the march will be held. If you interested and able to support our teens in their advocacy efforts, donations would be very welcomeThanks for taking action to help make a difference in the world.

Stay Zenspired,

Joanne

 

9 thoughts on “A Cyber Farewell”

  1. Dearest Joanne,
    Thank you for the lovely tribute to our dear friend, Gerard. His friendship and creativity will be missed. He was such a nice man with a big heart. Rest in peace Gerard.

    Love and hugs,
    Terri ❤

  2. Wow Joanne
    You sure packed a lot of things into this week’s blog in such a beautiful way. I love how you are able to tie many things together.
    I too was sad to hear about our friend Gerald. From the moment he joined the group he not only shared his awesome work but was so kind in supporting the others in the group as well. He, like you always knew the exact right thing to say.

    Your new Journal is beautiful, the color washed sayings and pictures inside I think make it perfect.

    This is an important week for me, it’s Brain Injury Awareness Month and this week (today) we go to Capitol Hill. There are big events all week and lots of out of town friends here. Many are staying longer to attend the March for Our Lives here in DC on Saturday. Sad it has to happen but I pray it will open some eyes and ears.
    Mazel Tov to Jonathan for taking such an active role. As you know I believe (by my actions) Advocacy is so important and in today’s world even more so.

    Virtual ((Hugs)) my friend,
    Toni and Bud who survived cancer and will be 7 years old Thursday!!

    1. I also miss Gerard or Mr. G / Irishman as I called him. I spoke to him 2 days before he passed via fb messenger as he was helping me (as always!❤️) with my dip pen and brush lettering. I met him on Fb in January 2018 and he became a very good friend. I miss his famous goodbye “lateroos” and always telling me his head was full of nonsense. . He wasn’t feeling well that Sunday night, had shoulder pain and the last thing I said to him when he said goodnight, was “feel better my friend”. I wish I would have also told him how much he is friendship meant to me. It’s hard to believe sometimes how close you can become to someone you never met. His niece once mentioned he said he was on fb because he wanted to leave a legacy. He was a great friend to me and so many others. He was gentle, honest, god fearing, sweet, generous and fun. Rest well, G, your mission is accomplished. You will always be missed!!

  3. You have a special way with words Joanne. Thinking of you and your cyber family as you grieve. It sounds though Gerard will stay on with you all in his own way xx

  4. I also miss Gerard or Mr. G / Irishman as I called him. I spoke to him 2 days before he passed via fb messenger as he was helping me (as always!❤️) with my dip pen and brush lettering. I met him on Fb in January 2018 and he became a very good friend. I miss his famous goodbye “lateroos” and always telling me his head was full of nonsense. . He wasn’t feeling well that Sunday night, had shoulder pain and the last thing I said to him when he said goodnight, was “feel better my friend”. I wish I would have also told him how much he is friendship meant to me. It’s hard to believe sometimes how close you can become to someone you never met. His niece once mentioned he said he was on fb because he wanted to leave a legacy. He was a great friend to me and so many others. He was gentle, honest, god fearing, sweet, generous and fun. Rest well, G, your mission is accomplished. You will always be missed!!

  5. Oh, I’m so sad to hear about Gerard. I really enjoyed seeing his art work, and he was a very nice man. He will definitely be missed.This was a very nice tribute to him, Joanne.

    I love your new journal. I will hopefully be buying some, in the future, as gifts. I always love the work that you do….Linda E.

  6. HI Joanne – I am really touched by your comments about cyberspace and online friendships. You have put into words something I have been trying to express but without coming up with just the right words. When my husband died 3 ½ years ago, I was familiar with social media and did participate, but had never been part of any type of online group. 13 days after his death, I found myself in a closed group on FB for people who had a lost a spouse. A whole different world opened up as I poured out every bit of raw grief that came to mind. I found other groups that met my needs. Friendships developed, I talked with people by phone, I met them in person at conventions and I grew to know and love them just as I had friends over the years who lived next door or down the street. Indeed the connection is just as real and the loss of such a friend can be just as painful. I did not know Gerard, but it is clear that he was very special. My heart goes out to all grieving the loss of this special person and dear friend. And yes, I can understand how someone you never met can become a friend that you can’t forget. It is clear that a huge void has been left in the hearts of his online friends. That speaks to how special he really was. And I am proud of your son, too. I watched the panel discussion that he moderated at Wake Forest livestream.

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