Tuesday, July 8, 2014

It's Time

I have to get off of Facebook.

I'm not announcing this as an attempt to get desperate, ego-stroking responses. 
"Oh, no!"
"We'll miss you too much!"
"Please don't go!" 
"Whyyyyy are you doing this to me?" (What? Too much?)

You've seen those status updates and know what I'm talking about. I mean, don't get me wrong, I hope at least a few of you will miss me. 

Okay, okay. Go ahead and tell me how much if it will make you feel better.

But, in all seriousness...let's be honest here.

I DO, however, feel I at least owe you an explanation in the event that it occurs to you 6 months from now that I haven't posted in a while. So, here it is...

When school starts back in the "fall" (we start in mid-August),  my daughter will be in the 8th grade. She is 13. She got her first cell phone about a year ago when she started junior high so she could get in touch with me regarding after school meetings, volleyball practice, etc. It was a simple phone - one she could text and call with - no bells and whistles. Well, that thing is hanging on by a thread. Sometimes it rings. Sometimes it doesn't. Sometimes texts go through. Sometimes they don't. Real useful is what I'm saying. 

As I was looking at my account online the other day, I noticed that she is eligible for an upgrade.  I remember saying to my husband (in the not-so-distant past), "It's just silly for her to have such a thing. She does NOT need an iPhone." Well, I apparently like how my words taste, because I eat them frequently (too bad those aren't the only things I eat! Badum bum.) Anyway. I still don't believe she needs an iPhone, but I feel better knowing that she has a way to get in touch with me when I'm not with her and I think it might solve some of the problems we currently have…like her ability to actually use the thing. Plus with my upgrade I can get one for a buck. ONE DOLLAH, people. 

My biggest problem with the whole smart phone thing is that I don't want her spending all of her time on it. But as I have considered this new purchase over the past couple of days, it has occurred to me that such an expectation of her turns me into something. Something awful. Something most of us detest. That's right. It turns me into a hypocrite.

I am distracted.

All of the time.

By my phone.

And by "phone" I mean Facebook.

I look at it when I'm in the grocery store. I look at it during commercials. I look at it before I go to bed at night. I look at it when I get up in the morning. I look at it when I'm folding laundry, when I'm cleaning house, and when I'm cooking dinner. It's a tic. It's an addiction. It's a problem.

To be fair, it's not the fault of Facebook. It's a fault of mine.

This realization has made me think back to what my days were like before I joined Facebook. Not that I never wasted any time…I mean come onnnnnn, there was still laundry to be avoided way back in the olden days. But I was immeasurably more productive than I am now and, more importantly, I wasn't constantly distracted.

This isn't the first time I've said that I'm terrified of what the future of technology holds for my children. I certainly don't like what it's done to me and I believe we've only scratched the surface. The simple truth is that I have become a horrible example to my children and I HAVE. TO. FIX. IT.





I think I've still got time to turn this thing around. I think there's still an opportunity to show my kids that it IS possible to live without my/their/our faces in my/their/our phones (or computers or iPads). That they can take pictures for their own benefit. That they can, in fact, communicate with people IN REAL LIFE. That a television can suffice as the ONLY means of technology for the span of 30 minutes - or even longer! 

They deserve it, and I deserve it.

As a parent, I am constantly being told of how these days slip through our fingers. How one day they are newborns and the next they are leaving the nest. When I think about the fact that my daughter will head to college in just 5 short years (someone make me a drink, please), I realize what a truth that is.

And I don't want to spend that time with my eyes pointed down.



**I plan to keep writing! Since I won't be using Facebook as a means to advertise new blog posts, please click HERE to get email notifications. NO SPAM! I PROMISE!**

13 comments:

  1. Good for you! Shun MarkZ and the FB empire! I'll be here enjoying your humor peppered with cursing. Some of us may even follow your example.

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  2. I will miss you, but I'll be happy when I find you in my inbox!

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    1. Um, that's what she said? heh heh.

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    2. What these girls said. Both of them. Also, GOOD FOR YOU!

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  3. I've started going days at a time without using my phone for anything other than time (no clocks), text, and phone calls.

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  4. Good for you! It's an admirable thing to do. I may even follow your example. FB does take up far too much of our time and it is incredibly distracting and for no good reason!! I will look forward to seeing you in the inbox.

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  5. Way to make me feel like a loser as I sit here on FB while my daughter WHO IS LEAVING FOR COLLEGE IN LESS THAN TWO MONTHS sits next to me ... on her phone. GAHHH!
    Love you and will miss your funny as hell status updates, but giving you a big ol' standing O for this decision!

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  6. My wife usually texts me from the other room when she wants to tell me something (like please switch laundry, cook dinner, let the dog out, etc) but sometimes she sends it as a note on Facebook. Thank you for the notice so I could subscribe to your email (which totally works, by the way) as I think you are great and don't want to miss out on anything.

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  7. Good luck with that. I don't think I'm strong enough but sure wish I was.

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  8. Facebook, you are such a bitch! love to hate it. Bless you Meredith.

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  9. I'm trying to wean myself off of Facebook too. Dumped the games at least, but for some folks, that's the only way to keep in contact with them. Which then begs the question - "Is that relationship worth it?"

    As to the smart phones - sometimes that's the only way my kids & I interact. Granted one lives 90 miles away in another city, but the other one lives only 6 miles from me. We tend to text more than talk. Kinda sad. Of course, when we do text it's to invite one another over to each others houses to combine our efforts on some monumental task that's going to hurt for far too many days afterwards.

    Still, I applaud your efforts. Maybe we can all learn a little something from this?

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  10. ugh, I'm not ready for this yet but wish I was. Instead I am defriending and/or blocking anyone who doesn't make me feel happy to hear about - this includes some cousins I have some issues with as of late and, like Macy's, too. I'm also working on limiting my use of my phone in front of my kids - some texts can't be avoided - but I know I am using it too much. I hope to eventually de-facebook altogether but I'm not there yet...

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  11. I basically quit FB for similar reasons. Just takes too much time. Though I didn't drop completely, I still try to get on once a month, just to check in on a few people. I've also quit google, because its scary how they track everything you do online.

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