Saturday, August 16, 2014

Right Over The Edge Of The Earth



Lately,  instead of simply navigating onto a new page from it, I often actually deactivate my Facebook account. Without announcements and explanations, just like slipping out of the backdoor to leave the party. I used to take internet sabbaticals, for a week, or a day, the mornings, or the evenings, but lately, with work that requires computer time,  that hasn't really been an option. And when I'm already online, surfing around to different social media sites, or blogs, or news pages becomes an almost subconscious act, a stress relief valve, a cigarette brake for the modern age.

To be able to remove an option from the list, to simply not automatically navigate to somewhere that's now mostly just pictures of kids and endless quizzes, memes and pseudo-witty commentary, has become almost a guilty pleasure. Facebook is the easiest internet convenience to give up. Were it not for the fact that it's a good way to keep in touch with faraway friends, I would be done with the whole platform already. But it's also a kind canary in a social media coal mine: when checking your feed becomes a chore, it's time to step back.

This summer in particular the accumulation of comments, messages, conversations, this other life, has been a little exhausting. Having to check my email daily for work is not something I relish, and during stressful times, it actually becomes and added stresser, something I dread doing. Internet sabbaticals haven't really been an option and the more engaged you are, the easier it is to continue to be engaged.

There are parts of my internets existence that I love and consider and important piece of my life. Like, say this blog and the blogs of my friends and readers. But when I walk away from it, I hardly think about it at all and sometimes, that is one of the best parts of vacations and adventures away from civilization, the headspace of not sharing your head space with others.

But even still I often feel like whenever I go on a trip, I have to prepare this blog the way I set up my house for my return; scheduling posts and arranging topics, making sure everything goes on as usual even though I' gone. And that's what I was planning to do for the next few weeks. Because somehow, subconsciously, I've started to think of blogging, of social media as something where you have to check in or you'll disappear.

My friend Amber, one of my first friends that I met through blogging, once said something that really unsettled me and has stuck with me ever since: while you're not online, people continue to interact with your online persona as though you were. And it's true, upon my return, I often find that the conversation has gone on, as though I was still there reading it.  That seems a little dishonest to me right now. I want to be part of the conversation. And I'm sure you guys can do without my witty repartee and cat pictures for a few brief weeks. So:  

I'm leaving. We're going on long camping trip, rather faraway. I'll be back in the fall. Have a grand time without me! Safe travels. Peace and love and cats,
M


ps. If you think I'm broadcasting on the internets that we're not home, fret not, there's actually gonna be more people staying here than ever before;)

17 comments:

  1. Have an awesome trip, we'll keep on the conversation going for you ;)
    I've been thinking a lot about deactivating my Facebook too, but i really need to write those birthdays dates somewhere first!!

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  2. Milla, enjoy your camping trip! Forget about the internet and enjoy nature!

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  3. hope you guys have a blast! See you come fall, kiddos are super excited! xo m

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  4. I totally understand and you don't need to plan anything ahead for your blog; it's not your job and you don't owe us anything if that is how it feels. I've never had a personal facebook account as I was sure it would become a chore and had heard too many stories of people wanting too much from you, be it connecting to someone you don't wish to connect to or staying up to date with everybody or else they're offended. Not for me! I've had one for my business for a short while, but it's just not my platform. I do sometimes feel like checking my blog feed is a chore and when that happens, I know it's time to mark all as read (except those of who I consider friends) and take a break for a while. But here I an, blabbering on while you just want to get away, so I wish you lots of disconnecting, connecting, peace, rest and fun!

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  5. May you have a wonderful camping trip. Enjoy and embrace the nature and see you in fall!

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  6. Oi hauskaa! Mahtavaa reissua:-)

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  7. enjoy this well deserved break!

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  8. Have an excellent trip, glad you are taking advantage of the late summer weather :)
    I've never had a Facebook page (I briefly tried, but blech)---and it kind of chaps me when friends insist that its the "only way" to keep in touch. There is that thing called e-mail. Oh, and that even older method of contact, physically talking on the phone!! Facebook just makes people believe that its the only valid way to keep in touch. Ah well, enough of my F-book hating :) See you in the fall!

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  9. Enjoy your trip! These last summer weeks are so perfect for camping.

    I'm on the verge of deactivating Facebook too. I recently had a deceased friend pop up on my news feed as having 'liked' something and it seemed so goddamn disrespectful. I know they don't have a way (that I know of) of knowing if someone is alive or dead, but using people's names for advertisement is pretty low imo.

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  10. Oh, I so know!

    Have a beautiful time away!

    M.

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  11. Ihanaa matkaa Milla-metsanneito <3.

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  12. I hear you, loud and clear. I've often thought of deleting my facebook and blogger pages, but have for now settled into walking away for long periods of time. I've also been wrestling with the idea of opening an etsy shop, simply for the reason that it would mean more time at the computer, away from actual life, and I'm not sure I want to commit to that.
    I hope you have a beautiful trip--I look forward to reading about it. xo

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  13. I deactivated all the emails from FB forever ago and just check in when I want to. I never really viewed my online self as always existing whether you are there or not. I think it's more about whatever memory or thumb print you want to leave.

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  14. Dear Milla, enjoy your camping trip and all the real connections. They are the ones that keep growing regardless of the Internets :o)

    (I've just spent three weeks with my love and I've barely checked my favourite blogs during that time, but what a treat it has been to enjoy life together! He's flying back to Paris right now, and yet I feel deeply happy.)

    xo

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  15. Amen, sister! Have a wonderful trip and enjoy the offline (real) life!

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  16. I do and feel exactly the same! Thank you for articulating what I think a lot of us feel.

    Hope you have the best time away (with apologies for always reading but rarely commenting).

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  17. Enjoy your break, your new posts are eagerly (but patiently!) awaited :)

    Megan
    Http://www.garden-variety.net

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