Well, I did it. Delete.
Although, recovering a deleted FaceBook account is as easy as signing on once again. I am not too worried about a relapse, though. Just half a day into it and I already feel like a weight has been lifted.
(Don't you secretly wish you could 'like' that?)
I woke up this morning, made my cup of coffee, signed on for the last time and read a few comments and messages from friends about my last post. I did decide to create a page for this blog so that those people who really are near and dear to me, but whom with it might be difficult to call or email, could still have a way to catch up and connect.
I deleted. And then I laced up my shoes, put the kids in the running stroller, and headed out for a run.
I have started running in the mornings with a lovely gal and her sweet boys. She is encouraging, supportive and authentic. We chat about all sorts of things when we run/walk, and I was looking forward to telling her about my decision to disconnect (she is on FaceBook, but not very active). I ended up getting our meeting time wrong so I was on my own for 3 miles.
It was one of those runs (don't let me fool you, I move at a snails pace, at best, and I walk a majority of the way) where the kids were well behaved in their seats, chatting to one another and randomly calling out things that they saw. I was able to really focus on my breathing and find a rhythm that works for me (2 breaths in, 2 out on hills. 3 in and 3 out on flat land).
I was focusing on my breathing, trying to clear my mind, but I kept thinking about all the people I would likely never hear from again since I was off of FaceBook. And I suddenly felt very lonely. Isolated and, well, sad. It didn't help that I had messed up my meeting time with my running buddy. Or that Jeff has been gone for a month and I talk more to toddlers and preschoolers than I do actual adults. And I began to panic.
I DON'T have any real friends! The only thing resembling 'friendship' or 'appreciation' in my life are the people who I USED to be friends with on FaceBook! At least I could pretend that the people who liked my post about a funny Noah poop story really KNOW and LIKE ME!!
I stopped running, my breathing chaotic and heart racing. I bent at the waist, still holding the handle of the stroller, to stretch my back and open my lungs. When I stood I saw the tunnel.
It's funny how those negative thoughts can come racing into your consciousness. Uninvited and toxic, this type of thinking can lead anyone to make a bad decision; self doubt, loathing and negativity. We run through this tunnel every morning, and often comment on how pretty it is. All the different shades of green, the cool air coming from the woods, the sounds of tree frogs and birds.
I kept running. Three breaths in, three out. And I changed my thinking.
'At the end of this tunnel, I am going to let go. Let go of the negative thinking that's telling me that I don't have friends. Telling me that I am only as good as the number of 'likes' I get on a status update. I am better than that, and this is a good decision. The people who matter will find a way to keep in touch. The rest don't matter.'
I finished my run. And when I returned home I had two new emails from dear friends to respond to; emails that shared more and meant more than I would have ever gleaned had I only 'caught up' with these women on FaceBook.