I’m starting to realize an unsettling Something and I’m just gonna put it out there. We humans avoid self-reflection on purpose by staying so damn busy all the time.
We have full-time jobs, chores, obligations, and errands that must be done. We squeeze in time with family and friends when we can. We fit in exercise and passions, only if there’s time. We are glued to all of the shiny things the Internet has to offer—social media, blogs, news, recipes, the occasional celebrity gossip.
We have so much information available to us at any given moment. In fact, we carry a handheld device around with us to feed our hungry minds.
But, where are we in all of this? Treading water until we get so exhausted that we begin to sink.
Rather than drowning, I took matters into my own hands last year and tried a blogging and social media break, a clean mind sweep for two months. It’s my little way of going to a deserted island without leaving home.
This year, I only did a month. And, I came back.
But see, I meant to come back on October 1st. Then the 2nd, 3rd, and 4th went by quietly. At the end of my hiatus last month, I didn’t feel ready to come back. Not at all.
For inspiration I went back to my hiatus post to see if I completed my mission. I said…Most of all, I simply want to be.
It’s funny, because “being” isn’t simple at all. In fact, it’s effing hard.
I battled my ridiculous desire to check-in daily with my blog and social media accounts. Even with my email notifications turned off, muscle memory tricked me into pulling up Facebook on my laptop one night and Twitter on my phone another time during my lunch break. I quickly exited both times.
I realized the absent-minded habit I now possessed and yes, it was pretty freaky. I did my best to unlearn these habits and attempted to “simply be”.
That’s where things got a little dicey.
Every day I meditated peacefully in a forest, smiling as I reflected on the beauty within myself and the world around me. Not really.
When I wasn’t busy working and all the rest of it, I used my spare time to question what the hell I was doing with my life.
Mostly, I was coming down after self-publishing my third book, Nola Fran Evie. “Another book out, and still no signs of fame and fortune,” she thought sarcastically.
Also, broadcasting my personal life on blogging and social media started to make me shudder. Though I try to come from a place of good, is what I’m putting out into the world actually meaningful? Or, am I just another chick with first world problems talking about herself and taking selfies?
It was a rough week, needless to say. But then, Mr. H drove my sorry ass to the beach and this happened…
I stood in the sand and watched the sea, and guess what? I didn’t need to search or attempt, because I started that “simply be” thing I’ve been yapping about. I stopped getting down on myself and chose instead to see the good in me.
That moment I knew that I was doing alright with life.
My hiatus was coming to an end. The big comeback blog post was looming. Shit.
I didn’t know what to write about—me, the girl who calls herself a writer. I wasn’t ready to deal with all of the waiting notifications and updates. I wanted to stay away, to keep my mystery, to viciously protect that small piece of me I found in September.
At 8am I woke up to the sound of a trombone farting. Seriously.
Sunday morning. In the city. Trombone farts.
I wasn’t thrilled about it either, because I was having one of those lovely adult dreams you don’t want to wake up from—if you know what I mean. In the dream I was in the shower and my hunky husband was about to get in with me, then…trombone fart.
That brassy bastard.
My eyes flew open. The trombone farted proudly once again. What the hell?
Apparently, the Portland Marathon is today. Besides downtown, the route goes through our neighborhood as well. Two streets down there’s a block party with dance music and for some ungodly reason…trombone farts.
Surrendering to our fate, Mr H. and I put on some headphones and began our Sunday routine, drinking coffee in our chairs. I opened my laptop, then my WordPress page. I directed my mouse over to “Posts” and clicked on “Add New”.
My fingers started dancing across the keyboard, typing this nonsense. And, I was smiling big the whole time.
I came back.
51 thoughts on “I Came Back”
I was actually thinking the other day that you’d be back soon, and here you are! Welcome back! I’ve been doing a mini cleanse myself, actually. I’ve been reading much more news and far less Facebook. If I’m going to write something with meaning and show the world what it looks like, I need to know what’s going on. Not to mention news is far more interesting than what my Facebook friends had for breakfast.
Anyway, I’m glad you were able to find what you were looking for during your break, but I’m also glad to be seeing your posts again. So, again, welcome back!
Tada! Thanks, Chris! Good to be back.
Good for you on the news priority shift! FB has its uses, but what’s going on in the world is usually not a hot topic…unless it’s celebrity-related. : )
I’m really glad you’re back, Britt. I always look forward to your blog posts because they are about you and your personal life. You remind me to see the happy in places I wouldn’t normally think to look. There are plenty of blogs out there trying to be meaningful and they fall flat. Your posts always lift me.
Okay, you made me cry a little in public when I read your sweet words. Thank you for saying that, love. I know you know how hard it is to put ourselves out there. I love everything that you stand for, and I’m so glad you started writing more about your beautiful animal causes on your blog. That’s so awesome!
Hey Britt welcome back! I’ve just returned as well haha.. but I had/have a good excuse 😉
I know exactly what you mean. It’s hard to get disconnected these days, and ironically get ‘connected’ again with what really matters. During the move (and in meantime also been on a business trip) I wasn’t at all into the mood of writing, social media etc. It’s only once I returned, I immediately caught the damn infectious virus again. I also intend to cut back on social media (already am) and reclaim a ‘hands-on’ life 🙂
Ironically I just came across this link this morning and it makes you think..
but I AM glad to write again 🙂
Hey, sweetie! Yes, you have had a good reason to go dark. Hope Texas is treating you well!
This video is truly powerful. I’ve been thinking a lot about everything covered in the video for a couple of years now. I appreciate the technology we have as a way of communicating with those we would never have met otherwise or those too far away. But when it comes to those close to us and life as it’s happening around us, a more hands-on approach needs to be every human’s focus.
Yes, I agree with you. We can’t go without technology these days and it’s all about balancing the scales, right?
p.s. I’m sorry, I didn’t want it to show the video – just the link
I don’t mind. The video’s cool and a nice addition to the post. : )
Well, I’m just coming back from an unplanned two month hiatus and if I be honest with you, coming back is not proving easy. It’s been refreshing in many ways to just deal with real life matters and feel my ability to focus renew. You have echoed many of my feelings on the matter, and yet, here we are 😉 Maybe it’s just about doing things a little differently. Or having it in a slightly different order of priority?
Coming back is pretty weird, isn’t it? Especially the social media side of things. I opened my Facebook page and felt stressed immediately. I was scrolling down lower and lower, trying to catch up, then I closed the tab and walked away, because my eyes and my brain hurt.
I do agree it’s about doing things differently, that we have a choice to use our online communication tools in a smart way so that they don’t take over.
You’re like sunshine after the rain Britt. Lovely to see you again.
That’s a fine compliment, Mr. McCarthy. Lovely to see you again as well.
It’s great to see you back! And I understand that difficulty in coming back after the break. The two weeks my husband and I were in England we totally disconnected from social media and email. We had my phone for making reservations and such but when we connected to wifi it was only to check the next day’s weather forecast.
I thought I’d go through horrible withdrawal, but by day two? None. It was a wonderful feeling of actually being present in the moment, of enjoying our trip without being distracted by social media. And it was hard for me to come back in some ways, too. I’m trying to decide on how to do some shorter, but more frequent, disconnects. I have a sneaking suspicion we’d all be healthier if we did that….
Good for you guys! It’s super easy for me to disconnect when I go on vacation. I know some people don’t even do that and give a play-by-play of every moment of their vacation. It’s crazy!
But, I’ve been learning to use that vacation idea at home too as we all can’t afford to travel enough to take those media breaks. It is super important for our health to use the technological tools we have responsibly and enjoy what’s right in front of us.
So glad you’re back! I found your insights interesting and hope you enjoyed your time off, but fingers dancing across the keyboard says a lot, if you ask me. Blogging isn’t necessarily self-centered like a selfie; more often, I think it’s a form of self-expression.
Hey, honey! Nice to see you again. Yes, once the fingers started dancing I knew I was truly ready to be back to blogging.
Blogging is definitely not the culprit. A lot of my hiatus tendencies come from the craziness that is FB and Twitter. Of course, a little writing break here and there is good for the mind too.
Welcome back (again)! It’s very good to see you around again. =D
I could never cut myself off from social media. Even though you were fighting with temptation, I still think you’re extremely strong for being to restrain yourself (if I was the one forgetfully checking my FB and Twitter, I would’ve said, “What the hell” and broken my “social media fast”). I’m glad you eventually were able to relax though. 🙂
I’m an all or nothing kind of gal though. That’s why I take off from blogging too during this time…so, I don’t slip up with social media along the way.
It was good stuff! Definitely an annual tradition for me now.
Welcome back, it’s good to have a little Britt positivity back in the virtual world 🙂 You’d thing just being would be the easiest thing in the world, but somehow there’s always something tempting us not to do it. Hope you manage to keep the balance now you’re back!
Aw, thank ya, sweetness! Just being is surprisingly tough, isn’t it? I think it’s harder nowadays because of the incredible technology at our fingertips. So easy to fall into these traps of distraction rather than living our lives in the flesh. I’ll do my best with the balancing act! : )
Sound the trumpets (no trombones, please)! Welcome back, Britt!
Haha! Yippee! Great to be back. 🙂
[…] Eli caught me at a time when I was feeling rather mysterious, during my blogging and social media hiatus in September. Naturally, I gave a coy […]
Reblogged this on craig's thoughts and commented:
We humans avoid self-reflection on purpose by staying so damn busy all the time.
“Live simply, so that others may simply live.”
– Mother Teresa (I “tink”)
Also great pic . Looks just like my favourite spot, Makorori beach