Thursday, July 3, 2014

Taking a break...

Totally random picture...

{Please note: I'm not feeling sorry for myself or depressed or fishing for compliments. Just addressing a reality of my online life right now and how I am going to try to deal with it. If you have any other suggestions, I'd be happy to listen! Comments are closed below, but you can always reach me via email by clicking the pretty envelope button in the corner.}

I first turned to the internet and blogging to help break me out of a pattern of seeing the negative everywhere I looked. I was so focused on the ugly, I needed to shake it off and force myself to focus on the beautiful. Nowadays, I know I need a break from the internet when I start seeing the negative everywhere again. Hmmmm… maybe I'm one of FB's lab rats. Although, most of the negative I'm seeing isn't coming from FB as much as it's coming from the blog community that I used to know and love. The promoting, the back-scratching, the business disguised as blessing, the marketing, the selling, the cliques.

Recent online conversations have lost me friends. I'm pretty guarded about who I agree to friend on FB and IG… I have to feel like I really know someone. So, not having public accounts, it's pretty obvious when I get "unfriended". Anyway, I'm sure that sort of thing wouldn't bother most people. I myself am tempted to just write it off as immaturity. But it still stings when you thought you knew someone. And you thought someone knew you. And liked you for who you were, warts and all. 

You see, I'm not the kind of person to see one argument or disagreement as a reason for ending a friendship (although too many arguments and disagreements might be justification for letting a friendship end naturally). In fact, I usually go out of my way to try to learn more about people I don't understand… like read their autobiographies and ebooks. Some of my best friends are people that I have had some intense disagreements with because we took the time to work through our differences of opinion instead of just clicking "unfollow". But this time, I'm thinking that maybe this needs to be the catalyst for something that has been brewing for a good long while. Not quitting, just stepping back.

Melissa Wiley was hosting a discussion about social media vs. blog communication, pros and cons of both. That conversation has inspired Lissa to take a new look at her blog and ask what people would like to see more of from her. For me, it's kind of done the opposite. Maybe it's time for less. But that conversation alone is an interesting read (especially the combox) if you are the kind of person who likes learning about other people's perspective.

That is the one good thing I still love about the internet. The things I've learned… did you know that some people find NFP really burdensome and that their obedience is a huge effort? I didn't until I'd heard it talked about on the internet. Did you know that some single people in the Church get really annoyed at all the "oh NFP is so hard, why can't the Church supports us better" or "I'm so fertile I'm neck deep in babies" kind of posts. I never thought of that before reading some comments on a post just this morning that addressed all of the above. So, maybe that's what I need to focus on. Just reading and learning. I have no set plan here. No time of sabbatical in mind. I'm just giving myself permission to take a break. 

Happy Independence Day... especially to those who have fought for our freedom and continue to do so!