This is kind of a long post, but worth the read. If you read anything, let it be the last two paragraphs though!
I made the decision recently to rejoin Facebook. I was off the site for a whopping 8 months. 8 very needed months for a break. A break from the negativity, from the competition of who has more friends, from the stalking, from the unnecessary overload of information on people I barely even know. I made an agreement with myself, however, that if I am going to get back on the site, there will be some big changes (you’ll have to read all the way to the bottom to see what event took place that kind of forced me to get back on facebook). Changes that included going through my friend list and deleting over 400 people. I want facebook to be a place where I can keep up with people that I love and, no offense to anyone I deleted, but I don’t love people I passed in the halls at Hoover High School one time and never spoke to again.
There was a method behind the madness of who all I deleted. For me, it wasn’t as much about deleting people as it was about limiting the number of those who see everything about my family. There is no offense to anyone I deleted from my page. Basically, the only people I remained friends with are:
- People I see on a somewhat normal basis.
- Family members, even if I rarely see some of them.
- People that, even though we aren’t close anymore and I rarely see them, I was extremely close with them at some point in my life and wanted to keep them around.
- People that follow this blog and my instagram.
- Current and previous co-workers (you never know when you’ll need them)
That’s pretty much why I went from over 700 friends from when I got off facebook in August 2012 to 300 now. It’s surprisingly hard to delete people on the new facebook (apparently a newer version came out while I was gone-shocking). Every time I scrolled down my list of friends and found someone to delete, I deleted them, but then the page scrolled all the way back to the top and I had to scroll down to find the place where I left off. You can imagine how long it took me to delete over 400 people. Needless to say, I’m probably not done deleting people. As I see people in my newsfeed that don’t fall in the categories above, I’ll delete them too.
I can’t stress enough though that I have no ill will towards anyone I am deleting. This is strictly a way for me to make facebook more simple for me. No more overload of information. And I am also going to be limiting what all I am putting on the site. I fear that I am putting too much out there about our family between facebook and the blog. My facebook was already private before I got off the site 8 months ago, but I still had over 700 friends (and that 700 number came AFTER I deleted a good 300 before finally getting off the site all together) that could see everything I posted. Every picture, every word, every video. People that not only did I really not want seeing all those things, but I doubt that they cared anyway. I’m sure that most of the people I deleted probably had no idea we even had a kid! There’s only a select few people that I truly feel like they care about our family and those are the ones that I kept around. Also, I am not adding the facebook app on my phone nor am I receiving email notifications. I log on to the site when I have free time and that’s that. No constant updates of who likes what status and who’s commenting on what. It’s just so stressful and overwhelming! I’d much rather me come to facebook than facebook come to me via a thousand “push notifications”. If I add it on my phone, I know that when I roll over to turn my alarm clock off in the morning, facebook will be the first thing I look at. And that time is not for facebook! Morning time before work, for me, is for getting ready and spending some time with God. Main reasons I wanted to join again:
- Our families that don’t live near us and don’t see Carter often want to see pictures of him and see how he’s doing. They either don’t know how to use the blog for that or for whatever reason, just forget they can check on him there. Also, almost every woman I go to church with has commented on not seeing pictures of him anymore.
- Birthdays. After getting off facebook, I realized that I knew a small handful of people’s birthdays. As ashamed as I am of that, it’s reality. I like telling people happy birthday but can’t do that if I don’t know when it is!!
- Updates on others. I did very much miss knowing what’s going on with the people that I love, especially people that were getting engaged, married or having babies!
All this to say, the actual true reason that I got on facebook was really only because of pictures. See, my in-laws gave me an external hard drive for Christmas in 2011. I saved ALL of my pictures on it. I’m talking, pictures from high school all the way to Carter’s birth. Wouldn’t you have it…that hard drive broke and we lost ALL of those pictures. We had extra backup of really important events like Carter’s birth pictures my sister took and our wedding photos, but take a minute to let that sink in. Africa pictures-gone. High school in it’s entirety-gone. College dance team photos-gone. My life while living in Nashville-gone. Honeymoon pictures in Hawaii-gone. Mountain climbing trips like Colorado-gone. So, the only thing we could think of to get as much of them back as possible, was for me to log back on facebook and start saving them. ONE AT A TIME. There are close to 5,000 pictures on there. As of now, I have saved 2 of 64 albums. This will take me FOREVER.
So anyway, knowing it would take me forever to save all those images, I just figured I may as well get back online, but make some changes. We’ll see how it goes. Y’all, I have LOVED LOVED LOVED my time off facebook. We live in such a “busy” world where we always say we never have time for anything. No time to play with our kids, no time to read and study the Bible, no time to talk to our friends in person instead of via computer. When I got off facebook, I had so much time! I started reading the Bible in August 2010 and have read one chapter everyday since then, but since I got off facebook, I’ve put such a bigger dent in it. I’m over halfway through the Old Testament and am currently starting my 27th book of the Bible today (all 26 that have been read weren’t in the Old Testament though, I skipped around in 2010 before deciding in 2011 to read from beginning to end).
I had more time to spend with my husband, like, quality time. I even found myself always yelling at him for being on his phone when we were in the living room with Carter playing. I’m sure I’m getting on his nerves telling him to get off his phone all the time :) The past 8 months just truly allowed me to enjoy the moment. I wasn’t worried about getting the perfect pictures to put on facebook or worried about how many people “liked” my status. It was truly freeing. I mean, in all honesty, how many of us are friends with those people on facebook that just drive you NUTS. People you can’t necessarily defriend because it would cause World War III, but you were just drawn to every word they wrote and picture they put up and then you went to your other friends and said “OMG can you believe she said this???” or “I cannot believe he put that picture up!!!”. It was so nice to be done with that. I found myself being way more positive and patient. I didn’t know the drama going on with certain people and it was extremely nice. I highly suggest everyone just take a few months, or even just a few days, to get off facebook and focus on what truly matters.