Saturday, March 30, 2013

Day 15: 50 Letter Challenge

To those who roll your eyes,

I get it. I’m right there with you at times. In my digital life, my digital self, I share a lot. Too much, I am sure, for the lot of you. But please, if it’s too much for you, find that button to unfriend me, or to hide me. I won’t be offended. In all honesty. I am 99% past the point where I worry whether or not everyone will like me. The 1% is reserved for those days when I am needy, oh so needy and insecure. (Okay, so maybe the actual percentage is higher than that. But that’s not the topic of my discussion today). In my non-digital life, I don’t walk on eggshells. There are a few I cannot spend too much time with. They irritate me and annoy me. So, if I am that to you here, online, please do yourself a favor and drop me. Move on with your life and be a happier person for it. If you choose to stay and continue rolling your eyes, well, go for it. Whatever trips your trigger. Floats your boat. Scrambles your eggs. Sizzles your bacon. Ices your cake. (I must be hungry...) Rocks your socks. Whatever. I’m happy to amuse you.

What you may or may not realize is that technology, in the form of emails, blog posts, and Facebook status updates, has helped me connect with others in new ways, in my own time, at my own pace. I have always been better with “wait time”, taking time to think through a response to a question, weighing how to articulate my ideas and my feelings. You see, I did that for years when I was little. I did not have siblings my own age and I spent a lot of time listening to adults talking together. I spent time observing those adults and living inside my own head. No, I was not neglected, but I learned how to be patient, how to find the right time to share. All that was a gift.

I had a good set of friends as a child and I grew up to be quite social in my teen years. But after so much activity, I sought out solitude in my college years. I worked hard in my studies and I went back to observing and listening intently. I wasn’t a complete hermit but pretty close. I was awfully proud of graduating Summa Cum Laude with an Honors status in my major, however, and getting an invite and a scholarship to get my Master's Degree by the age of 26. That’s what pulling away from sociability did for me. During those years of grad school though, I started a family and became a teacher, again surrounded by those who continue to keep me fully engaged in the "real world".

But here in my blog and on Facebook and through emails with family and friends who are NOT on Facebook, I put myself out there--to others who, on a regular basis, I would not otherwise have the chance to talk to, to learn from, to be entertained by, to love. I am living my best life--online and offline. I am still a bit awkward in both worlds, still that little girl who wonders when is the right time to share, but I have grown up to realize that technology has allowed me to launch myself into life 100%, to dig in, to be what I have always wanted to be, was meant to be. A lover of people. Technology has indeed been a tool that has allowed me an extension of my mental, emotional, and social self. It has allowed me more human connection and therefore, it has made me more human. Online and offline I am living in the real world. Sometimes I wonder, are you?

So roll your eyes (if you’re still here). I’ll still be smiling. And doesn’t the idea of that just hit your switch? Burst your bubble? Butter your biscuit? Flip your pancake?

Biscuits. Pancakes. I’m hungry. Time for breakfast. Have a good day.
Today's letter was inspired by a Ted Talk shown at the event I went to yesterday. It is worth checking out

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