Saturday, June 13, 2009

Facebook, I rebuke thee!

Do you find yourself ever thinking in Facebook?  

I had just pulled clean bed sheets out of the dryer and was walking back to our room with an armful of warm linens, giving off that fresh aroma we all know & love.  Something about it reminds me of Home.  Instead of actually enjoying the moment, I found myself thinking how I could word my thoughts as a Facebook status.  Utterly ridiculous.  

Then I realize that a lot of my thoughts, reflections, epiphanies, and whatevers often make their way through my head as a status.  Or a blog idea.  Somehow, I started believing that communication involved online networks and websites.  I can pride myself in the number of views to my blog or how many people I connect with through Facebook but it's alarming to me how these things are replacing community.  Friendships.  Heartbeats and tears as we share life with our closest bff's.  

We've convinced ourselves as a Facebook community that we are connected to people based on their profiles.  We check off our "I'm a good friend" box when we write on someone's wall, view their posts, or peruse their photo albums.  

I currently have 463 "friends" on Facebook.  Out of those 463:

I have 27 of those friends' phone numbers stored in my cell phone.  That's only 5.8%
There are at least 150 people I haven't talked to in more than 10 years.  (Two high schools.)

I would be completely embarrassed to tell you how much time I spend on Facebook each day.  I've been deeply convicted about ignoring my children to check my notifications.  I've wasted time flipping through photo albums of people I've never met just because one friend was tagged in one picture.  This could seriously be addiction.  Hello, my name is Heather and I'm a Facebook-aholic.  Anyone want to be my sponsor? 

We like to downplay this atrocity by laughing and making jokes about its pull.  I had a friend recently post a status that said he was "bored with Facebook." I often see statuses reflecting guilt for not "doing something" because they were consumed with FB.  Isn't this something deep inside of us crying out to get away from our computers or phones (whatever your medium) and hit REALITY with our lives?!  When did we become okay with wasting our time?  When did I become okay with wasting my life - my children's life - my home life - so that Facebook could get an extra minute (or hour) of my time?

Now, there are definitely things I appreciate about FB: I have lots of friends who have moved to other states and countries and their profiles give me the opportunity to stay connected to their lives.  I miss them all and appreciate seeing their kids, their homes, and updates.  However, the album will still be there, I can see all statuses in a few day's time, and they will still be my friends if a week goes by without seeing their profile.
I've been contemplating breaking away from Facebook in order to gain perspective.  Let's consider it a FB Cleanse.  Time to get the bad stuff out so the good stuff can take hold.  Time to realize that words on a screen are not friendships.  And time to give the best of my day without logging in or signing in.