Just an un”remark”able life…

So, Kelly and Alicia were helpful in the comments of my 7QT post from last Friday. I ended up having to reactivate my facebook account so I could find out the gender reveal from a best friend’s recent anatomy scan. (Her baby boy–yeah!!!–is due in November.) And another friend is having her scan this week.

I’m doing a great job staying off the book of face and not posting there either.

Don’t mistake my silence for ignorance nor lack of caring, I just don’t feel like engaging in general more than I have to and inviting controversy. I have friends who feel like every single venting post or post that shares personal information are an open invitation to offer advice. Even when the person explicitly says they have for example, “made a decision” and aren’t interested in others’ opinions on said subject. Most of these folks fall into the category, “never passed a combox they didn’t engage.” And sometimes it’s just to announce their ignorance on the subject at hand. I brace myself when I see notifications from some of my friends commenting on a picture or status because with the particular status and/or picture etc is something they have little to no experience with and their comment will indicate either random advice that people have heard in passing or will comment, “I have no idea what you’re going through, sorry,” or something similar.

I guess that could be a rant. Well, so be it. It’s not just reading depressing and divisive nonsense, it’s the “I have to comment on every.single.thing” nonsense too. My tolerance for it is at an all-time low, on my own posts, at least.

Which is why I love Snapchat. Very little is permanent there. It’s 10 second bites. And people who comment or “chat” with you, can’t comment or “chat” with each other on your post. And, even in your stories, things are only available for 24 hours.

So,  in the spirit of Snapchat, I’m adopting some policies for how I use the book of face.

  1. Comment and “like” sparingly. Sorry, but I HATE when friends of my friends over-engage me in comments or pick fights. So, the less I comment and like, the less likely this sort of thing is to happen.
  2. No more sharing “memories.” They are for me to enjoy and that’s that.
  3. All post will be available for 24 hours, no more. After that, they become viewable to me only and commentable (yeah, I don’t care if that’s not a word) by no one additional.This applies to all pictures and status updates.
  4. No more memes. The memes stop here.
  5. Much less status updating. Because it makes the rest easier.
  6. DMing primarily for the purpose of in-person connecting. Because the rest is mostly gossip anyway AND the purpose of social media is two-fold and the second fold is encouraging in person connections.
  7. No one is allowed to post on my page. This way no one posts while I am not paying attention and starting drama in my space without my knowledge. (I will probably remove this for birthdays etc)
  8. No longer engaging the majority of autism posts I am tagged in. I know they come from good place (mostly) but no more. I live it. I’m done.
  9. Unliking a ton of pages. That should be understood without further explanation.
  10. Finally, no profile pic nor cover pic. Because they are always public.

Maybe it sounds like I’m being Draconian, but this whole social media thing should work for us the way we want it to. I’m just no longer the biggest fan of remarking so many minute details of my life in that forum that invites so many more to comment and remark on my life in turn.

The Gospel reading for today is Matthew 10:34-11:1 where Jesus instructs that following Him means that our lives should be changed from what they were and that our first new purpose as children of God is to please Him and only Him. Even if it causes distance in personal relationships. Do I think I might lose “friends?” It’s possible. It’s actually probable, but that’s okay, I will live. And so will they. This is what is necessary right now to helping me grow in my faith and love of Him and be a better, more effective member of the Body of Christ. My life may appear unremarkable to most people, but it is precious to Him and His will will determine my eternity, not my “likes” nor my “friends.”

7QT: In which a 4-day week feels like it will never end

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Linking up with Kelly today because this week: was epic.

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Sunday we attended Mass at Infant of Prague which, being the only Catholic church in town (one of only two in our county not counting the Chapel on base),  has a tremendous military presence. Singing America the Beautiful while being surrounded by active duty families and generations of vets was moving in a way I’d never experienced before.

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So Monday, for the Fourth, we did, nothing. Well, we watched movies (The Sandlot) and ate but we stayed home. Jeff took Shelby and Joseph to fireworks but William wanted to stay home so I stayed with him and the dog who is deathly afraid of fireworks.

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Tuesday William started reading camp and Jeff went to do some work with his dad. William’s reading camp is a more fun version of summer school. At the end of the year, he tested just below where he needed to be for second grade so the school system offered us a completely free reading program during July. They even transport and feed him. He was hesitant but the first day three friends from his class were in his class for the program as well as another little boy he knew. He had a rough morning this morning but he has had fun overall.

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Wednesday was a big day. First, it was Shelby’s birthday. She is ten now. Ten. Two whole hands. An entire decade. Is it wrong that I think maybe I’m deserving of an award for keeping another human being alive this long? Anyway, it was another big day for Shelby because Jeff decided that based on some significant maturing we’ve seen this summer thus far, Shelby was ready to potty-train again. Because of her sensory issues, potty-training has never been successful with Shelby. It also doesn’t help that because of her developmental delays, she really did not understand what we expected of her when she sat on the potty no matter how we explained or watched videos (I can receit the Elmo Potty Training DVD…seriously, and I’m available for parties, it’ll be entertainment your friends will never forget, I promise!), or read books or demonstrated, she had no idea. But a lot of things have been clicking for her this summer and so I said, whatever and went with it. Jeff bought panties Tuesday night and I set low expectations based on past experience. The morning was one accident after another. In the afternoon I hid the panties and forced her to go with no bottoms which she hates. We were timing for every 15 minutes and suddenly, she started peeing on the potty. We praised and rewarded her each time. Yesterday was another mixed bag of mostly successes. Well, pee successes, we haven’t quite overcome the sensory issues associated with bowel movements on the toilet. We’ve never made it to day 3 before so we’re still seeing how this goes. (And we won’t be tackling night training for a long time…if we can go everytime during the day on the potty, I’ll be happy!)

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Still on Wednesday, before Shelby and Joseph were up (William gets on the bus at 8),  Jeff called me downstairs while I was folding laundry. He asked me to check a lottery ticked he bought for the Mega-Millions drawing online. I was thinking, “What? Why can’t he check it himself?”Well, it turns out he had checked and wouldn’t you know, we matched four numbers. It wasn’t the jackpot or even $1 million but we got $500. We almost never play the lottery, first of all, we didn’t have one in NC until 10 years ago. I literally have bought one powerball ticket my entire life. Jeff usually buys a few when there are big jackpots but those we usually don’t even match one number, so yeah, there were lots of reasons to celebrate on Wednesday.

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Wait, you want to know what we did to celebrate Shelby’s birthday besides potty training and winning the lottery…Jeff did most of morning potty-training duty because William was at camp and Joseph wanted to go to library reading club. I went with him. Usually there are crafts and games but this week they watched Zootopia. We’ve seen the film before and enjoyed it (plus the free bag of popcorn) but the floor was hard and Joseph wanted to go about 45 mins in so we decided to leave early. After lunch and William getting home from camp, Jeff took the kids to the pool. Then for dinner we had one of Shelby’s favorites, Chinese food followed by cake and ice cream. Shelby also got to pick all our tv viewing. It was very Spongebob and Elmo heavy.

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So maybe it’s two-weeks on, two-weeks off, but I deactivated facebook again last night (personal blog page is still around). Guys, I just can’t right now. My African-American friends are hurting and I ache for them. My law-enforcement friends, who are all wonderful people, are hurting now as well and I cry for their loss. Some of my other friends, I really can’t handle their extremely narrow world view. Between the sadness, the anger, the fear of those hurting and the “I’m-not-a-racist-but” crowd. It was enough to drive me insane. And the Catholic controversies are no less divisive. We had the Maria Goretti controversy (check out Simcha Fisher’s post) and the reaction of Cardinal Sarah’s suggestion and a real lack of mercy and charity. So let me be clear, my life in real life this week rocked, my online life sucked. And it was the Holy Spirit saying to me: take a break. A long break. I was reading about Exodus 90 which is a group for men that helps break addictive habits with 90 days of abstinence/avoidance from them with support. I’m thinking it might take 90 days to heal from this most recent spate of hate spewing and division. I’m not promising that, but my husband is zero social media and we don’t allow our kids on it. Plus we have family vacations coming up which are technology free. Will people really miss me? I don’t think so, I’ll still be blogging and the blog fb page, but I’m so done right now. I don’t think I can make this world a better place through my personal online presence but in my real life in the things I do when not behind a screen. So here goes nothing….

Head on over to Kelly’s for some quick (and probably shorter) takes…