It has been almost two months since I deactivated my FB account; and, I must say, it has been quite interesting to observe both myself and others, because of this decision, navigate this process. Because, a “process” it has been.
The very first thing I actively noticed is the amount of extra time I have. Seriously; don’t laugh! It is only since not posting that I have come to realize, not so much how often I posted, but just how many times I would ‘refresh’ my feed to keep up with what others had. In the most ordinary of activities do I realize that, in that moment a few weeks ago, I would be checking up on the shenanigans on FB. In the morning, after making my cup of tea, I would turn on the news, get my tablet, settle back on my pillow… and see what I had missed during the night (cause some of yall do not sleep!). When I got to work, I would unpack my corn muffin, pop open my Pepsi and log on… to both post about some foolishness or the other that had transpired during my commute, or to read what happened on yours. And you know once you post, then there is the follow-up to see just who commented, ‘liked’, ‘loved’ or was flinging some shade that day and saying nothing. Yes, since I have been off I have realized the commitment I had made to being both an exhibitionist and a voyeur! Seriously… by only 11:00am, I would have already logged on twice and ‘refreshed’ a multitude!
Foolishness aside however, I have also taken note of the feeling of ‘white out’ I have been experiencing. For instance, this past weekend as the nation watched to see just how much Irma was going to show her ass, I remember with pinpoint accuracy the moment I realized how much of the news reports would have been sifted through, affording me the ‘Readers Digest’ version, had I still been on FB. I remember, with the television on all day for regurgitation and updates, missing FB for its ability to save me the time and drama of having to listen to the newscasters. I also missed seeing yall posts that announced, “It is raining!”
I also realize the knowledge I took for granted – that you were travelling, this one’s baby was born and that one is now single… okay, “it’s complicated” – is missing from my daily reality. I am getting used to the fact that now I know absolutely nothing unless you make a point of telling ME; not all your one thousand, six hundred and thirty-eight ‘friends’. I know, this is strange! My decision to maintain the integrity and privacy of my life has now forced both of us, if we are truly interested, to be active participants in this relationship. Wow! If not, I will be left to wonder… “If someone is eating and posts a picture and someone is not on FB to see it, are they still eating?”
The ‘white out’ has made me recognize two things: (1) how lazy having access to many in one fell swoop has made us become and (2) how much information we were privy to in others’ lives that truly was not meant for us. Think about it… there was a time before social media when, if I were travelling, I would let only the people in my life it either affected or those that I affected, know. Since social media however, we announce travel by taking a picture of our departure gate. Everyone knows. We have truly replaced quality with quantity. Intimacy with immediacy.
I am in a ‘white out’, so I am in the dark as to what you are doing. And, you me. So, with all the time I realize I now have to spare, I’m thinking I could pick up the phone, call one of yall, catch up on the things that matter to you and share my own shenanigans. I’m thinking I could get personal, private… and intimate.