I deactivated my Facebook profile. I do this every once in awhile, because every once in awhile the fact that there’s an easily searchable record of some of the very stupid things I’ve said online starts to bother me, and I say things like “I need to circle the wagons a bit” in response to questions about why I’ve disappeared.
This time, though, it has very little to do with my personal feelings about exposure, and a lot to do with the unproductive noise I scroll through every time I log in.
Here’s where I start to feel selfish. I understand that it’s only because I’m incredibly privileged that I can choose to disengage from news of what seems like the entire world imploding. I would agree with anyone who called me an asshole for making that decision. The thing, though, is that there’s an obvious (to me) difference between choosing to not burden yourself with “news” filtered through people who are a.) just as scared and maybe-a-little-irrational as you are or b.) incapable of differentiating between fact (as far as that word can be applied these days) and blatant, unapologetic, useless fearmongering*, and deciding to step back because acknowledging that realities different from your own exist is too uncomfortable.
So I’m taking a breather – from sorting through other people’s feelings about life in order to find my own and from being forced to realize, repeatedly, that I come from a family comprised mostly of oblivious bigots.
But: I’m saying that now, at 3am, when I’ve been woken up from a nightmare I’ve been having all week by a cat who screams for no easily discernible reason at about this hour every night. The chances of me changing my mind in the Tim Hortons drive-thru during tomorrow’s breakfast rush are high.
*Or, in too many cases, hatemongering. If you’re a person like me, who has family like I do, that’s likely what you see more than anything.**
**And yes – the specific kind of hate that’s bubbled to the surface recently is largely fear-based, but nobody’s going to admit that.