I’ve decided! Facebook is out.

Pebbles. Snow.

Good morning, friends and family!

I have decided.

It’s always good when a decision arrives.

Not one minute too early and not one minute too late.

Just like the snow. 

It obviously couldn’t arrive before yesterday–even though it usually tentatively visits in October here in our woods.  This year it went a’callin’ out east and New York City where our daughter lives before it graced us with its presence.  (We’re not complaining.  It was an especially good year for the snow to postpone its arrival.  Because of Barry’s ongoing knee challenges, we’ve needed the extra time to get ready for the Long Season.  And we just finished the day before yesterday! His second arthroscopic surgery is scheduled for the day before Thanksgiving.)

Snow and dried Queen Anne's Lace

So, you ask, what has Kathy decided now?

If you haven’t read yesterday’s blog about two indecisive issues in my life, do so now.  Or not. I’ll just tell you.  I have not been able to decide about whether to keep or close my Facebook account since the Middle Ages.

Seriously.  Back on May 21, 2010, I wrote a blog called “Facebook, we’ve got issues“.  It was published on the main page of WordPress called “Freshly Pressed“.  To date, it has 10,724 views and over two hundred comments.

People everywhere wrote to share their own frustrations and concerns and likes and dislikes about Facebook.  This popular social media site sparks more opinions than whether it’s going to snow tomorrow.

Icicles (OK, not from this year--yet)

Almost every week (and sometimes daily) for eighteen months I have pondered–sometimes loudly, often silently–whether to keep or delete my Facebook account.  It has positive and negative benefits–as do most things in our lives.  Everybody likes it or doesn’t like it for different reasons.

It helps us keep in touch with relatives and long-lost friends.  At least that’s what everyone says.  I thought so, at first.  But, as time went by, I saw the opposite happening.  It was perhaps easier to keep up with the surface happenings in another’s life.  But mostly it seemed that it had the opposite effect:  that relatives and long-lost friends grew more distant.  We didn’t talk as much.  Instead of bringing us closer together, it seemed to keep relationships on the surface or weaken them.

Not with everybody!  With some of my blogging friends and a few others, the relationships remained loving and rich and talkative.  But, hey, I can see you guys here, right?

Put away your outdoor furniture, will you?

So I’ve decided to de-activate my account.  Not delete it.  You just push the de-activate button and your profile disappears.  But it is not eaten by cyber-munchkins.  It can be re-activated at any moment. (Not so if you choose to delete.  Then the cyber-munchkins have a feast and munch on everything until it’s good & gone.)

Maybe someday I’ll open Facebook again.  To check on an address.  Or to make it into a living address book.  But not now.  It’s time to just make a decision and quit thinking about it.  I feel SO good about this decision.  (And that’s not to say anything against people who decide to keep their accounts.  That’s cool.  We all have to follow what our hearts are prompting–if and when we finally discern what our heart is prompting.)

Last night when the power went out I called my son on our one cord-connected land line.

“Chris, I’m quitting Facebook,” I said dramatically.

He sighed.

“Mom, why don’t you do what everybody else does?  Just quit posting statuses and use it when you want to get together with someone?” 

Because I can’t. 

There is a part that wants to simplify, simplify, simplify.  It tossed out Twitter ages ago.  It basically loves keeping things simple and uncomplicated.

Brrrr....

Guess we’ll have to email each other if we want to have coffee or lunch.  And I think the nieces and nephews might appreciate a good old-fashioned email with a photo attached for their birthday. Or what about–gasp!!–a snail-mail card?  Or–heaven forbid!–a phone call.  Or a Skype chat.  And the universe can decide–or Mom will tell me–when someone had a baby, got married, or lost their car keys.

Second decision…about blogging…no need to worry, anyone.  Actually, this is getting kind of long so I’ll tell you about my second decision on 11-11-11. Which is a very auspicious date, as many of you know.  And–it’s my mom’s birthday!!  How cool is that?

Happy birthday, Mom!  I love you so much…  (Glad we have a relationship outside of Facebook.)

OK, it's not THIS cold yet! LOL! Fooled ya, didn't I?

About Kathy

I live in the middle of the woods in Michigan's Upper Peninsula. Next to Lake Superior's cold shores. I love to blog.
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38 Responses to I’ve decided! Facebook is out.

  1. Reggie says:

    You are so funny, Kathy. Well done on deactivating your Facebook account. I agree with everything you’ve said. We’re also losing that personal, face-to-face or at least phone-to-ear connection with our friends and families.

    CONGRATULATIONS to your Mom on her birthday! What an auspicious date! 😀

    • Kathy says:

      I am glad you agree, Reggie. Really glad. I feel so free and relieved and happy today. Sent out a snail mail already! I will tell my mom–if I can get hold of her. 🙂

  2. Sybil says:

    Love the last shot best Kathy. Congrats on your decision.

    November 11, is Remembrance Day here in Canada. 11th hour of the 11th day of the 11th month — the end of WWII

    • Kathy says:

      Remembrance Day sounds like a lovely celebration, Sybil. Today is Veteran’s Day here in the U.S. There’s a whole lotta celebrating–and remembering–going on.

  3. Dearest Kathy, If this comment seems repetitive, I have, for the first time, lost my comment as I pressed ‘post comment’.
    I have immense gratitude for all the threads of connection that glisten between us and the way that FB paved the way from me to you. I celebrate your clarity and look forward to connecting with you here and on my site.
    Today is my Catherine’s 14th birthday. We fly to Miami tonight to celebrate in the sun and waves for a few days as we prepare for the next leg of our mother-daughter journey together.
    I love your inspiration and transparency.
    Thank you dearest! Love, S

    Please delete this comment if my earlier one shows up on your page. xoxox S

    • Kathy says:

      Nope, this doesn’t seem repetitive at all, Suzi! Thank you for your kind words about this clarity which has suddenly crystalized. I just got pricklings of tears in my eyes that it is Catherine’s 14th birthday and that you are going to celebrate together in Miami. Blessings and joy for all our inspiration and transparency!

  4. holessence says:

    Kathy’s Mom – I’m wishing YOU the HAPPIEST of birthdays 🙂

    • Kathy says:

      I called my mom to wish her a HAPPY birthday, but guess what? She’s out shopping with my sister-in-law. Talked a long time with Dad instead. Will try to find mom around 4:30. (They’re having an 11-11-11 party down by the condo pool in Florida. They probably won’t even know it’s her birthday.)

  5. Loved the frozen Queen Anne’s lace picture.

  6. penpusherpen says:

    Decision made…good on you, Kathy… and I’m just like you…in that I need to make a decision and just ‘leaving’ something hanging in mid air is just not on… I can’t stop fiddling about… so it’s best to remove the temptation.. Happy Birthday to your Mum for 11.11.11 (you know I’ve been seeing 11.11 on displays everywhere this year… The microwave, various clocks, and a text I sent was exactly 11.11 … plus some,others… so …tomorrow I’m going to buy a lottery ticket and see what happens.. Maybe nothing but who knows?.. ) That bench was so cold to sit on.you know?. {{{shivers}}} ….and I’m so light you can’t see my ‘bum’ print. 😉 xPenx

    • Kathy says:

      Oh, Pen, it felt so good to finally make a decision! Glad to hear you understand that mid-air hanging–for months on end–can be a great energy drain. Let us know if you win with your lottery ticket! I am sending you good energy for a great 11-11-11 day!

  7. Susan Derozier says:

    I’ve never cared about FB that much either way but I am sure glad you are keeping your blog open. You are always a treat for my day with your words and pictures. Loved the snow and ice pictures but fess up to being happy with our balmy days of late. Will change places with you any summer though! Wishes for “unachy” days for Barry soon!

    • Kathy says:

      It was another challenging night for Barry, Susan. I know you understand about those challenging times. Less than two weeks before his next surgery, and we’re crossing our fingers that it will fix his knee at least a little. Glad to hear you’re having balmy days. It’s COLD here. And I really, really should go for a walk today.

  8. Congratulations on your Facebook decision. I rarely look at my account and probably wouldn’t miss it much if it were deactivated. But then I’m kind of low-tech and don’t know all the ins and outs of social networking to begin with.

    Happy birthday to your mom, as well.

    Kathy

    • Kathy says:

      My problem, Kathy, was that I first discovered social networking on a great site three or four years ago and fell head-over-heels in love with it. It closed after a while, and I joined FB, but never felt the same level of connection and comfort there. I think I’m kinda ready to be much more low-tech, like you. thanks for the birthday wishes for mom!

  9. Dan says:

    I had made that decision myself, but I ultimately came back because it’s a very useful tool. As with many things, it’s about finding the way to make it work for you. Personally, I removed everyone who I felt I was perversely spying on, and who was doing the same to me. I set privacy settings so that only twenty friends and family members can see anything I post, and anyone else can send me a message if they want to get in touch.

    You’re right, Facebook has problems. However, it’s also the best way to get in touch with a whole group of people that might otherwise be out of reach.

    Thanks for the post.

    -Dan

    • Kathy says:

      Dan, sounds like you have something worked out that works for you. It can be a useful tool. I tried to make it into that useful tool, but couldn’t quite do it. Maybe someday will figure it out…but now feeling really happy about this decision. Thank you for stopping by and posting.

  10. Brenda Hardie says:

    I am so glad you reached your decision Kathy. I know it’s been a struggle for you. I will miss you on facebook but we can visit on here or by email 🙂 Thank goodness!
    Wow…tomorrow is my Dad’s birthday too! I am going up to my sister’s tonight (after conferences for my 11 year old) and my sister and I will head to Dad’s tomorrow to celebrate the day with him ♥ Please extend Happy Birthday wishes from to your Mom from me.
    I’ll be back on line next week when I return from my sister’s. Will catch up on your blog posts as quickly as I can (it’s always something I look forward to 🙂 )
    Sure hope Barry finds complete comfort after the next procedure on his knee.
    Thanks for the snowfall pictures, I love the pebbles and snow the best and next I love the Queen Anne’s Lace and snow 🙂

    • Kathy says:

      Happy birthday to your dad, Brenda! How cool! You are so lucky you get to spend the day with him. I have loved my visits to my folks at this time of year in Florida…to be with Mom or her birthday. But it’s not meant to be this year. Looking forward to seeing your smiling face back here next week. And feel free to email any time.

      • Brenda Hardie says:

        Florida would feel heavenly right about now! And getting a hug from Mom (because as you know, nothing compares to hugs from Moms!) And since my Mom is gone, I get those special hugs whenever I can ♥ Thank you for the birthday wishes for my Dad. I told him about your Mom’s birthday and he thought that was nice. It’s still beyond him, all this internet stuff. I have shared with him, some of your stories and he enjoyed that 🙂

        • Kathy says:

          I always want to cry when I hear about people who have lost their mom and their mom’s special hugs. Sounds like you had a nice time with your dad. How sweet that you shared stories!

  11. Karma says:

    This is the second post I’ve read recently about quitting Facebook. KD over at “A Half Hour a Day” is doing the same. I don’t find it much of a distraction, honestly – well, okay, there is this little game over there I can’t seem to get enough of.

    You’ve got me very curious about the blog now. Since you said don’t worry, I’m not thinking it is going to be another blogging break.

    My mother-in-law’s birthday is also 11/11.

    • Kathy says:

      I should go meet KD and see what she has to say, Karma. Smiling at your “little game”. Don’t worry it’s not going to be a blogging break. I actually had trouble describing what it’s going to be. I just know there’s going to be a shift. Happy birthday to your mom-in-law!

  12. So…. now that you’ve quit facebook, you can move over to Google+? Just kidding.
    I can’t remember when I signed up for facebook. I’ve always said that I will never get a facebook account, but then peer pressure (aka whiney friend) won. I’ve cut back on my facebook time a bit in the last few weeks, I’m almost never on Google+, and will never get a Twitter account. And I mean it this time! Twitter just seems like too much work. I’ll just stick to blogging.
    Can’t wait to hear all about your second decision, but since you’ve already said that there’s nothing to worry about, I have a feeling your readers won’t be sad about it.

    Love all your snow pictures….. alothough snow on a sandy beach looks odd.

    • Kathy says:

      Yep, same here, Michaela. Peer pressure and whiney friend. Then it always seemed like it never felt like quality positive time there. OK, not never. But it didn’t a lot of the time. I guess I just prefer to communicate with friends & family in different ways. Second decision is a breeze. No worries!

  13. fountainpen says:

    Hey, Kathy, it was my mother’s birthday as well…..if she
    had lived, should be 100 years old tomorrow!!!!!!
    She loved the date so much!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
    fountainpen!

  14. Barb says:

    Great chilly photos, Kathy! I especially like the “Brrr” one. Good decision about FB, too. Thanks for reminding me tomorrow is 11/11/11 – I wish your Mom a very Happy Birthday all the way from CO!

    • Kathy says:

      It’s so chilly, Barb! We’re finally catching up to your Colorado weather. You are welcome about the reminder. My mom should be glowing from all these well-wishes!

  15. Marianne says:

    I think I have a similar feeling, Kathy. I don’t post status updates anymore and I rarely log into my account. I find that I can’t keep up with the social media tools especially since I’m focusing on healing and sustainable income generation. In addition to fb, I opened accounts on twitter and linked in. However, I love the interaction and I also love keeping things simple.

    It’s a conundrum.

    • Kathy says:

      Marianne, it sounds very healthy that you are focusing your energy on what counts. Sounds like your on-line communication is working for you. (Except for that conundrum part, lol!) Maybe we’ll never figure things out 100%.

  16. kanniduba says:

    Thanks to Karma for sending you my way, so I could find my way back your way. 😉 (Did that make any sense???)
    As I said over at my place, I don’t miss it. I miss certain people, but I am determined to connect with them in a more private way.
    Here’s to freedom! *chink*

    • Kathy says:

      Here’s to freedom!! Yes, KD, I feel exactly the same way. I am determined to connect with certain people in a deeper, more private way. And it’s already happening. **chink** back!

  17. The Queen Anne’s Lace is exquisite! Too bad Barry has to spend Thanksgiving recovering from surgery, but it sounds like the sooner he has it the better off he will be. The only reason I stay on Facebook is to play Scrabble and to see if my kids are posting anything interesting – it gets to be a lot of endless scrolling after a while.

    • Kathy says:

      Isn’t that Lace beautiful, Barbara? I was staying on Facebook mostly for the kids, too, but they hardly post at all. It was the endless scrolling and the massive amount of information and way too many people with which to interact meaningfully which finally wore me down. Would love to play Scrabble with you in person some day. Except, I’m sure you would win after all your practice!

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