This morning felt like the perfect time to sit, have a coffee and get back on the blogwagon. I’ve missed blogging. I’ve missed having an outlet to pour my thoughts and musings into.
For Lent I gave up a bunch of my computer time and while I’ve missed this space, truth be told, I didn’t miss much of anything else. The idea of giving-up Facebook for a month and a half freaked me out. It’s sad to say, but it had become such an integral part of my daily routine that I wasn’t sure that I’d make it through the first day without sneaking a peek. Sad, hey? I also started to worry that if I gave up blogging for that time I wouldn’t have any readers when I was ready to come back on here. Something that, after realizing everyone and their dog has something to say on a blog, I no longer give two hoots about.
I survived the first day, and then the second and then something happened around the 5th day…I stopped thinking about it all. What other people were posting and talking about no longer mattered to my daily life. I stopped caring about checking my messages or comments. I stopped seeing everything as potential witty status updates.
In the mornings instead of waking up and making lunches, making breakfast then grabbing the computer and “checking-out” for an undetermined amount of time, I would make a coffee and sit on the floor with Eli while the kids ate. I was present. I wasn’t preoccupied with reading about inconsequential news items so I wasn’t shushing my kids or telling them to wait a minute. I was reading to Ammie in the mornings, eating breakfast with the kids, making Eli giggle.
I know that this paints a very bad picture of what I was like before and, believe me, I’m not proud of the computer-mom I’d become. I knew it was a problem shortly after it started, but I was just too tired/stressed/selfish to change it. It’s silly too, since spending that amount of time in front of a screen doesn’t ever make me happier. It makes me more tired, more stressed, more depressed.
Two things got me really thinking. The first was a blog post that Mark Driscoll wrote on ‘Facebook Envy’. Boy, I had a flared-up case of Facebook Envy. The other thing that really convicted me was the thought that my kids might look back on these years and only be able to remember their mom sitting behind a computer screen and then wondering what was so important. I don’t want my kids to grow up thinking that this little piece of electronics is more special than they are.
One of the things that really surprised me about taking time off from the computer, Facebook specifically, was that it was easy to remove so many irritations. I’ll be the first to admit it, since being under loads of stress year after year I’ve become an irritable person. I’m low on patience and the whole “not giving a shit about things I can’t change” attitude that my husband and sister try to get me to adopt. I get bothered by things people say. I get bothered by things people do. I have yet to figure out how to let things slide off my back (probably because I’m still insecure). I have enough things to deal with in my day-to-day life and enough things that irritate me around this house, why am I logging-on to a website multiple times a day only to come away from it feeling frustrated and depressed? Granted there are a lot of things on the computer that don’t bother me but if I take a step back and assess the situation I can’t ignore how it makes me feel the majority of the time.
I did a complete turn around and started enjoying not opening my computer. I began to wonder how I ever had the time for it and why I ever let it get such a hold on my mind. In freeing up that space in my day and in my head I was able to be a better wife and mother. I was even creative again.
I’m so thankful that I listened to those promptings to close my computer for Lent and open my eyes to more important things. I’m glad to be blogging again, but my feeling is that it wont be as frequent as before. I’m also still going to be on Facebook to check messages and post a picture once-in-awhile but I just can’t go back to using it the way I did before. There are more important and exciting things on the horizon that I need to focus my energy on.