Lessons In Letting Go

Despite being introduced to the Internet at such a very young age, I’ve often found myself confounded by puzzling and confusing statements on social media. Back then, we really didn’t have social media. All us ignorant fellows knew was MSN or even the more outdated ICU messenger. I remember hearing the pop-up sound at my University and memories of my siblings rushing to the computer after hearing what sounded like an emergency from an annoying chipmunk.
So, if you’ve stumbled onto this website; you’re probably a friend who has wished to continue their undying devotion. And for that, I will guarantee and promise my undying devotion back. If you’re a stranger, if you continue along this ride, I promise my undying devotion. If you’re rich and single, a proposal will be on its way too.
To introduce myself, I’m Charles. Nearly reaching the fated 20 years of life. Studying anthropology and sociology and am just incredibly weird and not ashamed to possess a Britney Spears song in the 90s on my media device (well maybe… a little). And the biggest surprise I have for you today is… I’m giving Facebook the cold turkey. That’s right, the slimy, uncooked, pinkish corpse of a bird stuffed in the anus with breadcrumbs and herbs that I’ve never tried and would never eat (due to my selective vegetarianism and past trauma of being pecked alive by a few during a school excursion).
Is this a hoax? Well probably not as elaborate as Joaquin Phoenix’s hip-hop career (and I’m disappointed since I wish he went that route or at least did it on the side) but no. Why am I making a big deal about it? Well, as I had announced that I’d deactivate my account next week – I had a few interesting responses even after a few seconds of posting my superfluous exit strategy.
But first of all, why would a young street urchin like me unsubscribe to the fastest growing and most popular social media of all time? And to that question I reply with – it was making me miserable.
As I’ve quit with twitter at the start of 2012, I’ve found convenience store type social media had adversely affected me. It does have points for letting me interact with friends and even acquaintances that I’ve loved keeping in touch with for a long time (giving a big shout out to Stephanie here – your post of greatness will be coming soon). But as effective as it has been preserving friendships – I felt it had also compromised them to such a higher degree.
I never really had any ‘deep’ conversations with friends anymore. Facebook was an excuse to childishly prattle around and for people to run for cover and avoid rather than confront and actually speak. Why not just leave a half-assed comment or basically avoid a person’s effort of involvement? I’m not saying you can’t do that in real life too, but I’ve grown so weary and frustrated for letting it compromise my ability to communicate clearly with people I knew. People I’ve come to grow and love and people I want to spend my life with.
The sad thing is, I’ve had more relationships breaking apart on social media than in real life. Really you ask? Yes. And they were for the most silliest and stupid of reasons. Fighting on the Internet? Honestly? On the Internet, there is no such thing as diplomacy. Ignorance is praised and being flat out incomprehensible is as heralded as rappers singing about sex and drugs. I want no part in it. Not in my personal life anyways.
Another sad thing is that in truth – it has really affected my way of communicating with people. I feel that for such a long time – being blockaded and protected by invisible barriers on the Internet had not just made people cowards, it had made me one too. While social awkwardness and my reclusive nature is what I consider an endearing part of my self-referential personality, I didn’t feel the protocol translated in real life. And I’m actually quite frightened that if I didn’t get a glimpse of real life; I’d be stuck in an endless spiral of misery that I’m pretty much facing right now. I’m tired of superficial bullshit and you get most of it on social media websites.
I’ll be first to admit, that I’ve life drain all the passion I have for things down a depressive void. So many things I’ve found joyful, brilliant and interesting are just dull or not worthwhile anymore. And I hate that. I loved writing. I wrote poetry and short stories almost every day. Now I can’t even comprehend why I’d want to write. As I’m writing this, I’m forcing myself desperately to write. I have so many feelings, emotions burdened and inhibiting inside of me and being devoid of what makes humanity great and unique is being silently barricaded by a false, emotional indemnity that I had developed like a callous. A malignant disease that I let manifest through my apathy, carelessness and I don’t like it one bit. As time passes, I watch some of my closest friends become more and more distant. I watch acquaintances fade into obscurity and I become more and more saddened that as I reach out – the less and less I realise that I’ve truly gotten a true spark or connection with. And you may argue – it’s just the way of the world. And you know what? That mentality just plain sucks.
I’d argue, if you were willing to allow defeatist attitudes in your life; you’ve already lost. You don’t deserve the things you have. You didn’t work for them. You’re just hoping with every inch of your body things are always going to stay the same. I’ve made a lot of concessions for people in my life just trying to keep things together. I promised myself I’d just work on myself and stop living life for people who don’t care about me. I’ve done it again and it’s really the last nail in the coffin. I don’t want to live being surrounded by people who don’t try. I don’t want to become someone who puts no effort in anything. And in particular, I don’t want to be friends with people that don’t have the ability to synthesize and understand what a good friend is. One of life’s most difficult challenges is letting go of emotional baggage. Letting go of things we really just don’t need. Bad people are nothing more but false advertisements that promise you the world but give you a grain of rice when they scavenge what you give. If you are reading this – and you feel miserable with someone that makes you feel like that, I encourage you to slowly move away. You’ll be more liberated and happier at the end (emotionally and fiscally – for all the therapy you’re going to need). Conversely, if you are too scared – do something daring. Do something out of your comfort zone and do something about yourself and learn to love yourself before you give someone your attention.
But fortunately, in my life – I’m not alone. I have people who are amazing thick and thin and people I’d love to spend my time with. People who are willing to put effort and people I would love to check in with. I’ve met many great people and I’ll always have fond memories of people. I have the memory of a wise elephant… and the figure of one too (that I’m not so proud of). So I’ll say cheers to the amazing people who’ve touched my lives and I’ve touched theirs. And cheers to the many more years we will have to meet more amazing and interesting people and actually have real discussions with them!And the interesting responses? Some of you think I won’t be able to last. If in a year, I do come back to facebook, I’ll buy you a drink. And you have my undying devotion on that.


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