Posts Tagged ‘Facebook

06
Oct
09

“Life after Facebook,” OR “After Facebook… life?”

I’ve been thinking a lot about loneliness lately.

I recently picked up a novel at the library called “Eleanor Rigby.” I was drawn by the title due to it also being the name of one of my favorite Beatles songs, and I can’t help but hum it (or at least think it loudly) as I read. The book is about a woman in her mid-thirties (named Liz… NOT Eleanor) who has come to accept her solitary existence as a fact of life. She lives alone in a sparse condo, never has visitors, is indifferent to her job and co-workers, and would probably continue to do so if she hadn’t gotten that phone call from the hospital, telling her…

Ah, gotcha. I’m not going to spoil things, because you either (a) want to read it now, or (b) could care less. Anyway, that’s not what this is about.

Personal events have led me to the choice to evict Facebook from my life effective midnight, last night. Whether it turns out to be a temporary or permanent eviction remains to be seen. In short, the interactions on Facebook, while purportedly increasing my “social interaction” has, for me, done the opposite. I have spent far too many moments interacting in a vicarious and superficial manner with the 250-some “friends” on a website, while relationships with the real-life people I run into daily have gone by the wayside.

It wasn’t an easy split to make. So I started thinking about that: why SHOULDN’T it be? Why am I so tied-up emotionally in this silly website?

And am I the only one who feels this way? Nah… can’t be.

I think that more people in this world, though more connected in a plethora of ways than any generation of people before them, have become detached from “reality” with their relationships. I can only conjecture as to why… could be that FB and other sites of its ilk lead to a sort of emotionally inexpensive false intimacy. We feel more free to share information and emotions across cyberspace that we would NEVER have the courage, the gall, the lack of inhibitions, or the shortage of discretion to impart to someone else face-to-face.

I can’t just lump this into a bucket labeled “BAD” however. In some ways we are all too repressed… we hold things inside ourselves above and beyond safe levels for doing so. Unvented angst, unforgiveness, or other negativity can simmer to a violent boiling point, or can stagnate into bitterness. The latter can poison our souls. The former can hurt or kill others AND ourselves.

The problem is that the traditional avenue for getting these emotions out – in fellowship relationships with other real, non-judgemental people who are ALSO in need of a good emotional venting – has gone by the wayside. It’s too inconvenient or too scary for us to choose to do so with any degree of regularity… especially when semi-anonymous venting on the internet seems like it should do just as well.

Here’s the problem. When we don’t have other, hurting, human beings to share in this journey with us, face-to-face, hand-in-hand, heart-to-heart… we lose a little of our humanity. It’s not REAL, somehow. And any relief we get is cheap, temporary relief… like popping a couple Soul Tylenol.

So I’m kissing FB goodbye for a while. Possibly forever. There are so many hurting, lonely people out there who need some time in the presence of other folks on that same, sad road. And I’m one of them.

“All the lonely people… where DO they all come from? All the lonely people… where DO they all belong?”

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22
Jun
09

“I’m not dead yet!”

loser

I’ve been neglecting this blog for a while now, and for those (confused) few of you who actually follow this, I thought I’d update you on a few personal news bits as an explanation.

After teaching at Lockney High School for 10 years, I resigned my position there in late May of this year.  It was NOT due to a lack of job satisfaction, or community drama, or a VERY challenging group of kids I had this year (but still, yikes!).  It was a move that I felt led by God to make, impressions of which I actually began to receive about three years ago.

And the funny thing is, even in the face of uncertain economic times and personal/family changes, I have an unbelievable peace about it.  It would have been WRONG, somehow, to continue to teach there after this year.

I wish the community of Lockney nothing but the best in the coming years as they rebuild the high school building and continue the business of getting back to “normal.”  I love the town, the school, and the kids; and they will always have a special place in my heart and memories.

I have devoted the last month to actively trying to track down the job that God has picked out for me.  I’ve applied at several local (and international) laboratories devoted to food-testing, medical research, etc., as well as several schools in the Amarillo and Plainview areas.

I’ve had two interviews with McLean ISD, the last of which was two weeks ago, and both of which (I thought) went VERY well.

I had a screening interview with Amarillo ISD a week and a half ago, and am scheduled for an interview at Caprock High School this Friday.

I continue to seek out opportunities both in and out of education, and am trying to send off at least three applications per week, whether they think they want me or not.  (One for my Alma Mater — River Road ISD — goes out tomorrow.)

spanksOn the family front, we learned a couple of weeks ago that our 4th child will be a masculine child, tentatively named Samuel, and still due sometime in early October.  This news was met with much enthusiasm by eldest brother John, went in one ear of brother Reid before promptly exiting the other ear, and was the target of vigorous raspberries from 15-month old sister Sadie.

John has been into the doctor(s) three times in the last two months for his badly infected left ear, the most recent of which was today.  He is scheduled for a follow-up visit to discuss more invasive options in two weeks time.

We enjoyed a not-quite-a-week-long visit from the wife’s Mom, sister, and two nieces.  It was very hard to say goodbye.  I’m looking into sending applications to schools in Central Louisiana, and sniffing for other opportunities that direction.

Relax, Mom.  I also applied for a job in Minneapolis.  It doesn’t mean that’s where we’re GOING, geez…

Anyway, I probably won’t update here unless some drastically good news concerning a job, etc., comes down the pipe.  In the meantime, feel free to keep track of my more mundane daily info-bits at my Facebook page:  http://www.facebook.com/johnseeking

See you on the flipside,

— JC




The random musings of a 30-something, West Texas high-school science teacher. Hoo-RAY.
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