I can’t even begin to describe how many times I have both sent those words, and received them from others. It’s not like I mean to forget people or purposefully don’t communicate. If anything I want to stay in touch with those I care about and come in contact.
And yet I struggle, I don’t text people back or I forget to respond to Facebook messages and if I do remember it’s days later or to my chagrin not at all. Why is it so difficult to stay connected? While many would say we are over connected, I would argue we are’t that connected at all. At least not in the sense that actually matters.
Sure Facebook is a wonderful tool to be utilized to keep up with friends and family that are no longer close in proximity. As the daughter of a Marine, the invention of Facebook came at an opportune time. We moved constantly (every three years to be exact) and while writing letters for me and my best friend was always the norm. Facebook brought a different level of “staying in touch” that other mediums such as letters and phone calls couldn’t really surpass.
I mean not only could I see what my friends were doing, but in a way I felt like I wasn’t really missing out on certain things like birthdays, and graduations because I could see them happening through a screen. Here in lies the danger for me at least. Simply being able to see things through my computer screen, phone screen, or whatever type of screen is out there became enough.
I can’t really say when that started to happen but it did. Instead of calling my high school friend and congratulating her on landing that big time job, I liked it on Facebook, or my personal favorite wishing people Happy Birthday. There was a time I used to send cards to those I felt close to on their special day, but Facebook seemed to replace even that to.
Please don’t misunderstand, as an avid user of social media especially Instagram I am in no way saying Facebook and other media platforms need to go away, and even if I were to be arguing for that I don’t see how the vanishing of these platforms would help us as human beings start caring more.
The simple act of caring not the reactions you can attach to people’s statuses or reposts, and certainly not the retweeting of something that struck a cord within you. But really actually truly caring about the person behind the screen. Whether they are of the same belief or race or whatever the case.
These screens we have come to live behind. They will be what we chose to spend all of our time with. How sad to think that with all of our sophistication all of our achievements and desires to be the most connected generation this world has probably ever seen. We are some of the loneliest people. Why is that?
I don’t have the answers to that question, but I do know for me that I want to stop living my life from behind a screen. I don’t want to just update people and write meaningless prose that only reach a max limit of a 140 characters. I want to live, and really live. If people are that curios to know what I am doing with my life. Ask me. Invite me to coffee and I will tell you face to face what is going on in my life.
Haha, how wonderful that would be would it not! To simply, call someone up on the phone day or night, and just be like. “Hey! It’s been a while . . . ”