my social media wife

Nancy is not a social media person. She is not a marketing consultant. She is not a communications expert. She is not a twitter guru.

nancy swansonNancy works for the Fort Wayne Children’s Choir, coordinating volunteers, keeping the books, answering phones, running house side of concerts while her colleagues are taking care of the music side of things. Nancy works for Sharehouse, an organization that does with non-food items for nonprofit organizations in Allen County, Indiana what foodbanks do for individuals in need. She helps with the books, sorts product, and smiles.

Nancy has two kids in college, a daughter in heaven, a dog, and me.

In the past year, Nancy has taken herself onto facebook and onto a blog and the children’s choir into blogging and twitter. She held out for a long time, watching this world through my eyes (and twitter stream).ย  Eventually, however, she started seeing how she could be Nancy online.

In her blogging, she writes differently than I do, more thoughtfully, more carefully, more precisely. She cares about each post, each connection, deeply.ย  Her statuses, which are far more frequent than mine, are fun. She uses facebook as a way to stay connected with our kids as they are away from the house, but still very close to her heart. She also uses facebook, privately, as a way to reach a very small handful of hearts that she treasures.

At the children’s choir, she has become a social media evangelist. The choirs do a major tour every couple of years. This year, though she wasn’t going to Newfoundland, she pushed me to set up the blog (, to train her colleagues in how to use it, and then encouraged and nagged and praised them through the tour and beyond. They did the writing, but only because she advocated. Now, though she hasn’t setup her own twitter account, she is @fwcchoir, tweeting about the events of the choir.

What is fun for me is that each of these social media steps she has taken, she has taken on her own …and then told me about them. They were her steps, her setups.

Two other things.

We talk about you. You are part of our family, mentioned at the table, part of our conversations with each other and with God as we walk. We have had the struggle that many have, of trying to figure out how to talk about our invisible friends with our visible friends. Part of what makes it possible is that we are used to knowing that our Invisible Friends is real. And we have, together, had the opportunity to make some of those friendships visible.

Second, it’s her birthday today. I figured I’d have a party for her and invite you to join us.

You might as well.

You’re family.

Happy birthday, Nancy. I love you.


21 responses to “my social media wife

  1. Happy birthday Nancy! You and Jon have oftentimes been part of my table too ๐Ÿ™‚

  2. How lovely to have and deserve the love of Jon Swanson and to receive such a charming tribute from him on your birthday.

    You are blessed in many ways, Nancy. Thank you for including me in your online family.

  3. What a lovely tribute. Happy Birthday! How lucky your community is to have you, and I guess your family feels awfully lucky to! Hope this year brings you only the best.

  4. Happy Birthday, Nancy.

    Hugs and pixels!

  5. I’ll say it elsewhere too, but for here…Happy Birthday, Nancy Swanson!

  6. What a beautiful post, Jon. I’m so blessed to have you both in my life.

    Happy birthday, Nancy!

  7. Nancy, a very happy birthday to you!

    Joe was just giving me ideas of what to say, but his sense of humor doesn’t translate well in the comment box. ๐Ÿ™‚

    Congratulations on surviving a momentous year, and here’s to another year of life and growth. May it be full of happiness.

  8. Nancy: in your honor I promise to eat chocolate today.

    Happy birthday and thank you.

  9. Happy Happy Birthday to my first sister-in-law! I treasure the beginning of our relationship and the one we have today. You are an excellent role model as a wife and mother and daughter and sister and friend. I love you!


  10. Oh yeah…and thanks for getting her into the family Jon ๐Ÿ˜‰ Love you too!

  11. I’m wishing you a very happy birthday, Nancy. You’ve taken momentous steps this year. Cheering you on from the sidelines.

    Thanks Jon.

  12. Happy Birthday Nancy. I look forward to sitting across the table with you soon. Enjoy your day.

  13. Happy birthday, Mom! I’m sitting at your desk right now, wondering where you are. See you tonight!

  14. Happy Birthday Nancy…..

  15. Happy birthday, Nancy! Nice to be part of the family. I’m a fan of Jon, but what I like best about him is the way he writes about you and Andrew and Hope. Blessings today, and every day, to you and your family.

  16. thank you, everyone, for the birthday wishes. And Jon for the words of encouragement and love.

  17. Joseph Crockett

    Happy Birthday, Nancy. I hope it is a blessed day for you.


  18. Happy birthday, Nancy!

    I personally believe that birthdays are roughly equivalent to national holidays (even when they don’t fall on a Monday), so I hope you’re celebrating your day in grand style.

    From knowing my invisible friend Jon, I can picture the bratwurst, the pies, and of course the mugs of coffee. What am I missing?

    I hope you have a wonderful day, and I’m very honored and grateful to be included in the family celebration.


  19. Happy Birthday Nancy! I’m so thankful that God has brought Jon, and now you, into my world. Thank you so much for giving him room to explore this space and impact so many lives. And thank you for walking alongside him in the journey, both literally and figuratively. ๐Ÿ˜‰

    May your day be filled with rich blessings and the year ahead be one of God’s best for you – in the next phase of life.

    Happy Birthday!

  20. ah dear friends. Thank you for stopping by our party today. I’m sorry there wasn’t any cake (there are a few donuts left upstairs and there will be fresh coffee in the morning.) As I read your comments to Nancy, I smiled.

    And so did she.

  21. Happy Birthday Nancy!
    Jon writes me so much it’s no surprise to me that the woman in his life sounds so much like my Peggy.

    I’ve pleaded with her to get online and join me and she is. Sorta. But, in her own sweet and very precise time and way. She does more (offline) in a day than I do on-n-offline in a week.

    Though I do try (several planners and counting).

    We’ve recently stepped out of the boat (just our toes) to begin leading and ministering God’s love together in a small tuesday night group session in our home but she has been a minister to our family from the beginning.

    So I will once again take the good Pastor’s lead here and re-gift it if you will, to wish my wife a happy birthday too. (even though it’s not until April).

    God Bless,