Plugging in after Signing Off

I pulled up to my house a little before 7 am this morning after flying in late last night and getting up at 4:30 for the drive. I pet the cat, chatted with my parents, put in a load of laundry, and showered before turning to face my computer. I held the power button down for a second and felt its cool smoothness, absent from my fingertips for the past week. I watched the screen boot up, ignored a couple error messages, and help my breath as I waited for google chrome to open.

Would I find a different world online in the past week since I abandoned my computer to collect dust while I flew off to Minnesota? How would I feel signing back in to my facebook account after 33 days off of the site? Would my return find different items in my newsfeed or merely iterations of the same information that led me to walk away from it in the first place? And, most curiously, why was my heart racing as I loaded and logged in to http://www.facebook.com?

Melodrama aside, it was actually rather easy to not log in to facebook after deactivating my account. It gave me time to get some things put together in my life, and even gave me a good dose of reality when I learned that aside from some passing curiosity about how I was holding up, no one much seemed to notice or care that I was gone from this now mundane social networking site. I received a couple of requests for pictures from our hike up to Yosemite, but otherwise, life seemed to go on just the same for everyone else, as it rightly should. I don’t want to be conceited enough to think that me being on facebook or not actually changes anyone else’s life. By the end of the month, actually, I didn’t much care about being on or not.

I know that the people who matter in my life will be there no matter how much or little technology I’m using. They’re there for me, not my status updates, photos, or occasional messages. Now that I’m living back in the Valley, too, things happening outside of this area don’t seem as important. I think facebook is a great way to share with loved ones far and wide, but it is those who are near and dear that matter more. I am blessed to have people who care about me, and to have the access I do to technology, whether I want to use it or not.

It is time for me to recuperation from my week away, to get back to my jobs and take my laundry out to the clothesline. More updates are to come about Minneapolis and recent reading, but for now, I’ll just say — it’s good to be home again.

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