Why I Hate Facebook (but why I use it)

Sigh.  Facebook.  Most people have one.  I am someone who does.  I’ve tried a few times to deactivate.  I go back.  I even tried twice, recently, to permanently delete it.  There’s a two-week wait before it self-destructs.  But both times, I went back.

I hate Facebook.  It’s supposed to be a place to connect with your friends and family. But it’s way more than that.

I used to behave very badly on Facebook.  I was a braggart.  I was rude.  I had no idea what it meant to have a digital footprint.  I used it as a means to communicate my negative thoughts and feelings that should not have been communicated to anyone but the individuals about whom I was feeling and thinking and maybe not even them.  Some things just do not need to be shared outside the confines of one’s own brain.

Facebook causes all kinds of miscommunication and desocialization for everyone.  I personally have lost friends as a result of my, and their, Facebook use and misuse. Facebook has certainly done nothing to ease the daily anxiety I feel pulsing through my veins.

Facebook is a jerk.  And it turns people into jerks.

There is the ugly business of unfriending people. Sometimes, the people we unfriend, or who unfriend us, are inconsequential.  Other times, the consequences are life-changing.

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There is the obnoxious problem of bragging … every.single.picture and status update screams, “LOOK AT ME! LOOK AT MY LIFE!  LOOK HOW FABULOUS I AM!”

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There’s the over-sharing that no one thinks twice about.

But I have it because I DO like to share certain pictures of Husband, Girlfriend, and Monkey. I DO like to share an opinion here and there about a song, or a show, or a book, or something that occurs to me. I DO like to keep in touch with those people I would not have any communication with otherwise. I DO like to use it as a resource. There are a lot of good people on Facebook. For these reasons, I have Facebook. Without it, I would be standing on the outside of our customary culture, by myself, for really no good reason.

But I do hate it. I will always hate it.  I hate the things it’s ruined.  I hate its ubiquity.  I hate that in order to stay in touch with people, I kinda have to have it.

Right now, I’m in a good place with Facebook.  I know every single “friend” on my list.  I like and respect every single “friend” on my list.  There is not one single “friend” on my list who annoys the hell out of me.  And I am pretty sure they could all say the same about me.

Nothing will ever change the simple fact, though.  I hate Facebook.

 

Happy Father’s Day!

It was Father’s Day.  June 19, 2016.

“What do you want to do?”  I asked Husband.

To which he responded, “I don’t know … stick around home, spend time with the family.”

Hmmm.  That didn’t sound like a lot of fun.  Our pool wasn’t even ready for swimming.  It was still green and we’d decided that morning to empty it and start over.

I had visualizations of a Lake Sunapee Day or Squam Lake Science Center.  Something big, something fun, something that ended with a nice dinner out and great memories to look back on.

What?!

Okay.  Let’s get real.  Husband does not like to drive long distances – he never has – and while he does do it, why would he want to on FATHER’S DAY?!  And, we have a crazy monkey boy who absolutely will not tolerate a nice dinner out!  In fact, “Monkey” and “Nice Dinner Out” shouldn’t even be spoken in the same sentence!  He wholly proved that fact a couple weeks ago when we had an early dinner at Legal Seafoods after traipsing through The New England Aquarium.  Add to that, Girlfriend eats buttered pasta and little else.  We can have that at home for way cheaper.

Then an idea hit me.  It was little.  It was simple.  

But it was perfect.

We’ve been wanting to go strawberry picking.  It was the most gorgeous morning outdoors. Our favorite patch was 15 minutes away.  Would Monkey trample the plants?  Probably.  But would he love it?  YES.

So it was settled.  We were going strawberry pickin’.  And later?  Who knew.  Who cared?  It was a gorgeous day.

We were going strawberry pickin’.

It was a blast.  After running up and down the paths, Monkey sat right down and feasted on his favorite fruit.  Girlfriend was more help than she’s ever been on such an excursion. And we left with a strawberry jackpot.  Plus, before we departed for home, we enjoyed some fabulous ice cream sold right there on site from a local vendor.  Normally I don’t eat ice cream but I figured, it’s Father’s Day and we’re about to start summer vacation.

We grilled for dinner.  And I made strawberry shortcake which was the best I’ve ever done.

And we all have the wonderful memories.

 

 

The Walk

Remember several months ago I posted about getting back into the studio?  Well, I did for a few weeks and it was glorious.  Then Monkey got sick.  Really sick.  (I should write a post about that).  And he ended up dehydrated.  The kind of dehydrated that lands a person in the hospital.  So we were in the hospital for three days and then we got home and then I had to sort of put my life back in order and think about work which I’d missed for over a week – and trust me, teaching 2nd graders, missing more than a week of work isn’t grand – and getting back to the studio came to an end.  I just lost the motivation.  I had other things to do.

Sigh.

This being-a-mom-to-two isn’t easy.  In fact, sometimes it sucks.  Of the many things I no longer have time for, or energy for, the most urgent is the time to exercise.  Some would say I am lucky, I am not fat, I still wear my regular size clothing, but I would argue all three of those statements.  I’m not lucky, I may not be fat but I am extremely soft and jiggly, and while I do fit in my regular size clothing, my body feels very different and so do the clothes.

I am not one of those mothers who desperately wants to be thin or look like I did before I became a mom.  I am one of those people who believes in fitness and healthful eating.  I believe that if you welcome exercise and good food into your life, the rest will follow: mindfulness, sleep, organization, all that.

Over the next several months, Monkey came down with one ear infection after another. And work was busy.  And I was having my house “renovated.”  And Girlfriend was very involved at school, with Brownies, with projects, etc.  And then I wanted to spring clean my yard.  And birthdays came up.  And … and … and … and.

Well, the house renovations are over.  The ear infections seem to be over (for now). Monkey is sleeping a lot better.  Birthdays are over (for this year).  School is over both for Girlfriend and me.  My yard never got the attention it needed (and still needs) but I’ve let that go for the most part.

I need to do something.  I need to move.  I need to breathe.  I need to walk.

walking

I started walking when I was in the 7th grade.  I went with my mom.  She also loves to walk. And for years and years, I always went back to The Walk.  It is one of the best forms of exercise you can do for yourself.  It’s easy, it’s cheap, it’s convenient, and it works.  You will get into shape, you will lose weight, you will feel good, you will increase your energy, and you will have something for yourself to look forward to.  You can take this routine with you wherever you go.  All you need is a good pair of sneakers.

So today is Day 1.  I got up at 5:30.  I had my cup of coffee and I read some of my book.  At 6:22, I bookmarked my page, rinsed my coffee mug, changed out of my pajamas, whispered goodbye to my sleeping husband, tied my laces at the door, and off I went.

I am going to do this.  I am going to lose a little bit of weight.  I am going to gain some muscle.  I am going to commit.  I am going to do this for myself, for my family.  And when I look in the mirror, I am going to say, “I did this … I am responsible for this … this is me and I am proud.”