#wpmom is a hashtag

If you’re reading this, you’ve probably already heard that Kim Parsell died over the holidays. Her loss is almost incalculable for the WordPress community — she was a longtime contributor with a tremendous impact on the parts of the project she touched, a speaker, a leader of teams, a no-bullshit speaker of truth and at the same time a deeply kind person.

She was truly loved by many people in our community. She was the kind of person we all have in mind when we fiercely defend online relationships to the few people who think they’re somehow not as good as “real life”. She was also the kind of person who was at the top of your list to meet any time you could possibly make it happen. (I never did. We planned to meet up on one of my trips out there to see my husband’s extended family, and then I had to leave early due to a blizzard. It’s high on my list of reasons to hate winter.)

Kim was often known as #wpmom — especially when she was gently nudging overcaffeinated and hyperfocused devs to remember to eat lunch or get at least a few hours of sleep in a day.

But here’s the thing: #wpmom was always a hashtag, never a username. It would’ve been the easiest thing in the world to set up a second twitter account to dish out life advice, anonymous but not really anonymous to anyone who knew her; instead, it was all about the act of reaching out to care for each other in little ways. And that isn’t one person’s job. We can all — we must all — take on some part of that role.

RIP, my friend. And all y’all: take care of yourselves and each other. And eat some lunch.