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  • Writer's pictureMReid

Taking notes, 365

In 2006, I deleted my Facebook for 3 years. The reason is no longer as important as it once was, but it was a strange and thrilling time, to be so young and eschewing something so popular to my particular demographic. We were flailing our way through what we imagined was a kind of test-run of adulthood, and I felt even more adult by being able to put something aside that, even 15 years ago, demanded so much time and energy. I spent the time flailing in private. There were no test-runs at relationships immortalized in photos shared; there was no comparison to be had between myself and people I knew in high school. I was just alive, so painfully present in each moment that I found other ways to disappear within my brain. To distract myself so much I wonder if some of the memories are lost forever.

Anyway, that's a long way to say that there have been many times when I've wondered if I would delete the app again. Sometimes I wonder what deleting it permanently would be like. Things are so different now. Facebook is no longer a novelty, but has become both mundane and extraordinary. We are living entire lives on Facebook--there are people we would have zero connection with outside of it. In a world on tilt thanks to the pandemic, I watched a friend get married in real time via the app. I've watched some of my favorite authors on it. Watched a show conceived of and produced specifically for the app. I've even gained a little business from it.

This ain't the same shit I deleted when I was sad fifteen years ago.

In November 2019, when my second baby was only four months old and my oldest baby had just entered toddlerhood, I started keeping track of the many things I've said on there because I felt like 1. it was important to have a written record of the many "random" thoughts I've decided to share with other people, and 2. I was toying with the idea of what it would be like if I decided to delete my account or 3. the possibility that the app itself could decide to boot me or block me or censor me for whatever reason they want, whenever they want.

Last year, a full month before the world came to a halt and the word "pandemic" entered the lexicon of those of us who'd already lived through 9/11, and years of war and terror and violence and recession after recession and the onslaught of reality TV, now in a full-run at adulthood, I stopped keeping track. I had no idea what was coming, and I'm sure I probably stopped because it's been nearly impossible to have a consistent moment each day--with two babies close in age--to sit down and write. Kinda bad for somebody whose life is words.

In an effort to populate my blog with my own content, and thus post more often (like, ev-e-ry day *Dre Ellis voice from Brown Sugar*), I'm going to share the statuses I've written on the app over the years. Maybe not every single one, since some days I've posted something almost every single year I've been back on Facebook, though mercifully not a lot in the beginning when statuses were new and I considered them a stupid affront to the "legacy" of the "classic" experience. *groans loudly* Maybe I'll talk about them a little, maybe I won't. My hope is, as it always is, that my writing reaches you precisely at the moment you need it most. May you always be able to take something from it.

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