Tag Archives: emotional affairs

2011 in Rearview:

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I have noticed that many of the blogs that I read have had something like a “year in review” wrap up blog in the last week. I used to do something similar back in the days of Myspace; I would post “Things I learned this summer or winter or fall or spring or year or whatever” and I have not done anything like that recently. So in homage to the yester-me and fellow bloggers, I offer my *2011 in Rearview.”

1) I never realized how much I would miss my old cohort in grad school. Even the ones I didn’t like, I liked. Who’d a thunk it? I am hoping to have as great a group of peeps to be around at my new school, but the bar is set high Vikings, the bar is set high.

2) I always thought that I hated to be alone and that was part of the reason that I was never single long; after spending nearly 3 months absolutely alone in a new town without even a dog or tv, I realized that I enjoy being alone but prefer it to be a choice. When I am forced to be alone and have absolutely nothing to do, ie: no job, I try to die from pneumonia.

3) Pneumonia is no effing joke and I have never been more scared about my health in my life. There is nothing like laying in bed alone with a fever, not being able to breathe or even get up, scared to sleep contemplating how long it would be before people realized you died. It was also the first time I experienced fever dreams. Not cool. You can keep them. It did however give me perspective on a lot of situations that I had not thought of, such as the couple this year that had the government deport one of them even though the one had complications of AIDS and needed his husband to help take care of him. It also made me want to pray for George Michael because Pneumonia is the effing devil. I can commiserate. Luckily, I was youngish and healthyish.

4) Quitting smoking in June was much easier with no one around to torment or tempt me.

5) Ironically, I think that part of my getting pneumonia was related to letting go of my dear dear friend tobacco. Sniff. I still miss him.

6) The illusion of your favorite place to visit certainly fades away when you have to live there.

7) Living in a place with a huge population of homeless makes me feel like a fat American, helpless, selfish and unsure of my ability to wear a social worker hat.

8) Concurrently, it impassions me to wear my social worker hat.

9) I don’t know if I should have used empassions or impassions in #8.

10) Everything about my life that I have absolutely hated in the last few years has absolutely prepared me for the current job that I have.

11) I really, really miss the NFP I worked at in Idaho. If you guys want to be part of an excellent group of people in Idaho, check it out: http://www.alphaidaho.org/

12) I miss my friends and took them forgranted when I lived near them.

13) I miss my family and took them forgranted when I lived near them.

14) Emotional affairs are a very real thing and not just a story to fill up a slot on the Today show. No pun intended. 🙂

15) I have worked with or for some pretty financially comfortable people in the last year and must say that I am much more emotionally, physically, and parentially? capable than most of them. That makes me feel better about the things that I feel my kids have missed out on because I am not rich and makes me feel better about the things I feel like I miss out on because I am not rich. If I could choose between being part of the 99% vs 1%, I honestly think I might pick 99%. Last year, I wouldn’t have said that.

16) I really learned a lot about myself, my relationships, and my kids in the last year.

17) I learn best by getting lost and finding my way home. Figuratively and physically.

I think that is all the introspection I have for myself and the world today.

Skip to 1:05 and enjoy the tunes from my estimated 8th ex-husband and his band:

Rearview Mirror

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The metaphorical degradation of communication and relationships via social media

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Several things in the last few weeks have made me realize that the entire concept in the movie Wall-e is not that far from us. We no longer make eye contact, at first I noticed it when I went back to college ten years after my first attempt. Back in the olden days of 1996, people talked to each other, waved, made initial contact with strangers. When I went back in 2005 I noticed everyone was walking with their heads down texting or talking on their cell phones. I didn’t get a fancy cellphone until the next year when I was 26, which is like cellphone ancient right? Still, it baffled me no one wanted to talk. I used to joke that we were going to de-evolve into creatures with necks that are crooked down because people who’s necks are straight would never have the opportunity to breed because they aren’t hooking up via text. Its actually not so funny now.

Then I got a myspace. I was addicted, I admit it. I was married to someone who was gone 40 weeks a year and drunk the other 12 with 3 kids in the middle of bumfuck Filer, Idaho. I needed myspace. It served a purpose. Then I got a life and shut it down.

For reasons I no longer remember I got a facebook; maybe cause all the cool kids were doing it, maybe to communicate with something about school. Honestly, I don’t remember. But anyway, it again became my way to communicate with people and share things I found interesting and pictures and blah blah blah all the magical things that facebook does. Over the last couple years I have shut it off for a day to weeks at a time because I get so sick of texting and only seeing people online. I even said “el oh el” out loud once. Serious. How lame is that? I consider myself a political advocate, but I, like most of my generation and those to come after, vent on social sites and feel better while never doing the work, never getting arrested or peppersprayed in the face for sitting on my ass somewhere other than in front of my magical telescreen facebook. We vent and feel like we did something when we didn’t really. Just created a statement that can never really be erased. But that is ok, because unless you are really important and a political powerhouse such as Lindsey Lohan or Alec Baldwin, no one gives a shit what you say.

I digress.

Anyway, every time I turned my facebook off, I eventually turned it back on to communicate with people because its apparently too hard to use a phone or a cell phone or our feet to say hi to someone. Everyone says Facebook me. Tweet me. G+me. wordpress me. message me. stardoll me. WTF ever one uses. Even if you live next door. Its beyond frustrating. I turned my facebook off again a week and a half ago; it took my 97 friends (of which 23 were family) a week for 6 of them to notice. Or atleast notice and try and call to make sure I hadn’t committed suicide other than technological. That was beyond confirmation that no one communicates anymore.

Atleast not in real life.

People create intimate pseudo-relationships with people online. We have things called “emotional affairs” because someone can get caught up in the magical anonymity of chat rooms and Facebook and reestablishing relationships that ended years ago (usually for good reason) with people that we only present the best parts of ourselves to online, because it validates us, makes us feel good when the things in our lives become mundane, banal or even simply difficult. Online is a fantasy. It can become an addiction.

It may be the first thing I truly had a difficult time walking away from so I am taking baby steps. I’m keeping my twitter. I’m keeping my WordPress. I’m keeping my email because I need it for work. But Facebook? Myspace? any of this other bullshit you guys keep wanting me to try, no way. Facebook shall never be twilighted. I am done. Eventually I will have to go back to get my pics off it. I know this. But I will do it in the middle of the night when no one can talk to me or attempt to suck me back into the opium den. As for real life? I’m here. I have a phone. Two in fact. I’m even listed these days. I am sending out cards for the holidays. No copy and pasted greetings online from me. You wanna actually talk to me? Pick up a phone and do something besides text.