IAmNotBritish, episode sixteen
Welcome friends! Come in, please. Let's pretend we are gathered in real space, real time.
Happy Brunch Sunday from Florida! Raise your flutes or mugs and let's clink a cheers to a bit of connection between work, notices and ads in your inbox.
A friend and colleague messaged me this week, overloaded with the spewings shared by FRIENDS on Facebook. "Rantings and ravings," she called them. Spewings is my word: an unconventional usage, yet makes me smile.
Any-hoo, it seemed to me that my friend was shaken. In volleying through text, we came to a higher point together, sharing her layer, then mine, like a lovely baklava, until we reached this higher place. It was a beautiful bit of connection. I was reminded of my instant draw to her five years ago as a sweet, but powerful, person.
I am noticing the value of connection that we can enjoy through technology. I am Zoom-calling several friends, some local and stuck in their homes, and others across the United States. (Or...just States.) I am feeling unity in my relationships, despite the You Know What.
The rabbit hole of social media has been both a comfort and a burden for longer than I can remember. It started as a comfort to me, as I was so far from family, and friends who we called family, while repeatedly relocating over the globe.
Was it the public-trading status of eight years ago that changed things? Incrementally, instead of feeling a social relief and a joy, it feels like a burden.
No matter where your leanings lie, it offers you a space to dump off thought downloads, and then exit the virtual room. For the rest of the day, your people are feeding off of your leavings. Or perhaps you never dump, you just quietly eat the other's posts like a little Pac-Man, walking down the timeline, (is it a timeline still?) your feed, picking up each brick left by others, gathering them all in your arms, dropping a few in the comments as you go.
I hear you--telling me that I can control my settings of what and who I see on my page. I do. I use this tool often and clean out the virtual closet, holding up each piece and asking, does this bring me joy?
But I also ask, do I love this person?
Which leads to the problem. I love you, but you believe differently than I do and sometimes we make each other uncomfortable with our thought downloads. We can struggle to maintain the love and the Facebook account, but it is getting more and more intense.
Division is the flag of our country. Please don't judge me just yet--I love our flag. I love our country, mostly because I am completely entitled and have benefited from the laws of the land. I am aware of this. But so many things point to dividing us into groups, like a perpetual caucus, with everybody in your corners.
This is not a political rant.
I just want to tell the truth.
How do you feel after ten minutes of scrolling?
Today's Deep Breath: (Here's a little juju nugget. May or may not be helpful.)
How can we, in our daily actions, unite others instead of divide? This chat with my friend ended with two women feeling great about themselves and each other. How blessed we are to have a choice of how we speak and behave and love and honor and worship and write.
Savor a moment today. Connect with someone, eye to eye, word to word. If you have judged, or mis-judged, another, fix it. (You know who you are.)
If you have been hurt by someone, just turn your body a little to the right, and see all the folks lined up, waiting to love you. Count me in.
Until next time,