An honest post about not caring.
A text message I often receive when friends send us farewell messages before our vacations. Is it harmless? Totally. An obligation? Not at all.
On our honeymoon Mark made a request to limit phone usage. Obviously social media in 2014 wasn’t what it is today. What my new husband was asking for was for me to spend quality time with him in tropical paradise. To be present with him all the days we were blessed to be in Turks and Caicos. So we took off in a jet plane, switched our phones to airplane mode and that was it for the week… OK, so I posted one photo while on our honeymoon. It was our one-month anniversary of being married. I celebrate everything. Other than that photo, zilch.
Ever since our honeymoon I’ve treated every annual anniversary trip as a break from social media. This break includes emails, text messages, Facebook, Instagram, etc etc. I see it as a week-long date with my husband. Just my husband. When we go back home – Mark’s home in Niagara – for Christmas it’s different than a ‘honeymoon.’ Niagara is filled with family, friends and relaxing with a mix of run to the store to get (insert something that my Mother-in-Love doesn’t grow in her garden) for dinner. I adore Niagara and love the rest we receive there. But we’re just as much on our phones there as we are when we are home in Vancouver.
On our annual vacation we’re usually on a beach sleeping reading a book, but on this 3 week trip we had a fair bit of travel time between the 14 cities we visited. The majority of the time I didn’t even think about posting. Those times were relaxing and so wonderful. We would sit in cafés, sip cappuccinos and eat our pasties, or scarf down gelato as we watched the world go by. I did my best to limit social media usage, but since it was such a large amount of time away, we did spend a little more time online than previous “honeymoons.” A few Instastories and a handful of posts. I’ll be honest, sometimes it felt like such a chore. There were times we had to go – but I felt an obligation to stay connected to Wi-Fi until the bar was fully loaded, so that I could post a cluster of photos.
I’ve always loved photography. I also love social media. I enjoy scrolling through Instagram or Pinterest and admiring others’ creativity. I like meeting new people and learning about someone’s life on the opposite side of the world. I also enjoy watching bloggers or my friends’ Instastories when they travel and am genuinely happy for them that they are on vacation. So maybe their travel partner is completely comfortable with being online. Maybe they don’t need a break from being online. That’s OK. I’m not saying they are wrong for choosing to post every day or that it’s a problem. We’re different. God has made each and every one of us unique. We value different things, we rest in different environments, we feel love and neglect in different ways.
Personally, I want to be as present as possible on our “honeymoons.” It has always been a choice – and I want it to be my choice. If I’m down looking at a screen, I’m not being present with my date. I don’t want to be that person glued to their phone, tapping away. To me, that’s not beautiful. (Side story: 2 years ago I was finishing up my degree which was full time online and I got tendonosis. Yeah, that happens.) See? Time away from screens can benefit your overall health!
Last year I was talking with a girlfriend about social media sensations. She told me about a girl who had become famous online. And why not with a beautiful website and incredible photos? In reality, however, she feels unfulfilled. I don’t want that to be me. I don’t want to be so bogged down by what I’m posting – that it has to “match” my theme or that I’m genuine with what I create. In my mind I feel the pressure to keep up with other bloggers, but I am simply not OK with scheduled, planned or forced posts. I am aware that this topic doesn’t relate to everyone and that this blogging world is completely unnecessary to some, but it matters to a few of us who create work online.
Call me a bad blogger for not posting daily but I’m still trying to find a healthy balance with being genuine and being a blogger. A balance that I have yet to figure out.
Where do you find rest?
Wherever you are, be all there.