Family life, Paleo-ish eating and Coping with Chronic Illness

Posts tagged ‘Dinner’

I’m Addicted to Facebook

I’m usually a “I won’t be mastered by anything” type of gal.    I don’t eat too much (most days), drink too much, or shop too much.   Everything in moderation.  Except Facebook.  I Facebook too much.  I definitely Facebook too much.

Facebook addict

Recently, I had to give my Smartphone to Scott for a day.  He needed the GPS.  His rotary phone doesn’t have that app.  I offered my phone to him, because he was traveling with our sons.  I didn’t want them to get lost.   It was hard to give my phone up for a day.  I check Facebook from my phone.  I decided I didn’t want my family to get lost  more than I wanted to maintain my access to Facebook.  Barely.

I was with my parents and sisters the day I gave  up my phone.  They had some fun at my expense.   My family knows my Facebook dependence is hardcore. They said they’d be there for me when I hit rock bottom.  They’d wipe the sweat from my forehead, and hold my jittery hands as I fought through my compulsion to check on my Facebook friends.

For Gosh sakes, that was a long day.  Who knows how many naughty kitty sightings,  inspirational quotes and pictures of what’s for dinner I missed?  It is sad.  I’ll never get those moments with my Facebook friends back.

 

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I made it through the day without being admitted into rehab.  We met Scott and the boys later that night.   I was so happy to see him again.  My phone, I mean.

I started thinking about this day without Facebook.  It started bugging me.  Once I get bugged, I have a hard time getting unbugged.  I thought there might be something I was supposed to be thinking about.  Something I might need to  learn.

Facebook is just a perfect fit for people like me.  I have always admired and been attracted to shy, humble, introverted people.  Many of my closest friends fit that description.  I married one of those people.

I like shy, humble, introverted people so much that I have wished I could be like them many times in my life.  Especially right after I do or say something I’d like to forget.   I love the idea of being private.  I want to measure my words and share information sparingly.  I want to be slow to trust, and have a small circle of friends.

People who do that seem so dignified and respectable, don’t they?  They don’t make fools of themselves.  They don’t have to retract their words, and apologize for saying too much.  And under no circumstances would it ever occur to any of those people to post silly/embarrassing  pictures of themselves  on Facebook, or spill their guts in a blog.  Those kind of people have nothing to regret.      I want to be like that.  But, really?  Who am I kidding?

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I have a small circle of trust too.  I have a strict rule about only sharing my personal thoughts with my 400 Facebook friends, and the thousand or so strangers who’ve stopped by my blog.   Other than that?  I’m a closed book.  You’re not getting a word out of me. I mean it.  Don’t even try.  I’m too shy.

I tell my kids that honesty is always our best option.   A good place to start is being honest with yourself about who you are, and how God made you.    Once you know who you are, you have to own it.  You have to fight your weaknesses and develop your strengths.

Honestly,  I’m not introverted or shy.  I guess you knew that. I like people.  I like a lot of people. I like to tell people I like them.  I like to share what’s in my head.

You know what else I like to do?  I like to listen.  It’s true.  I like to hear about people’s cats, their headaches and what they had for dinner.  And that’s why Facebook rules me.  Facebook was made for suckers like me.

Well, I won’t be ruled.  I decided to give up Facebook for 10 days.  I gave up blogging too.  My blog and Facebook are kind of package deal.  I don’t know how to do one without the other.

I said goodbye to all my virtual friends, and decided that for 10 whole days I would only communicate with people who I could talk to in person, or on the phone.  My dad told me I’d never make it.   That is  why I knew I would.

I wanted to see for myself what was wrong with Facebook.  I wanted to get answers to questions like these:

1. How much time am I REALLY spending on Facebook?

2. How much more productive can I be without Facebook?

3. Is Facebook detracting from my in-person relationships?

4. Does Facebook feed into my pride and ego?

5. Is my life better and more meaningful without Facebook?

It was a long 10 days.  I was out of sorts for the first few days.  Breaking a habit is hard.  After the first 3 or 4 days, I started to figure it out.  It got easier.

Here’s what I learned:

1. How much time am I spending on Facebook?

Answer: Too much.  I realized that for the most part I do not choose Facebook over other activities, but I always defer to Facebook.  I scroll through Facebook any time my mind has an opportunity to be silent.   Sometimes you can learn things from silence.

2. How much more productive can I be without Facebook?

Answer: Not that much.  I was disappointed by the results to this question.  I thought maybe I was on Facebook so much that I would free up hours to do things I’d been meaning to do.  I thought I could finally add that half hour of strength training to my morning routine, or have a cleaner house.  None of that happened.

I use Facebook as a distraction.  I check Facebook when I’m on hold, waiting for the dentist, or when I’m a passenger in the car.  I don’t check Facebook instead of making supper or watering the flowers.  Darn.  I really was hoping to find some lost hours in my day.  I could use them.

3. Is Facebook detracting from my in-person relationships?

Answer: Maybe. I don’t know.  I don’t think so.  I know a lot of awesome people.  I didn’t call any of them to meet for coffee during my 10 Facebook free days. I did really miss communicating with some of them on Facebook though.

4. Does Facebook feed into my pride and ego?

Answer: Yes.  For sure. This was another primary reason I wanted to stop Facebook for a while.  Humans are egocentric.  We are born that way.  Our instincts are to promote ourselves and our interests. Fighting that instinct is hard.  I think it’s worth fighting. I want to fight it.

Facebook is just  so “look-at me”.  How can we pretend it isn’t?  I hope you don’t think I have a good justification for this part of Facebook.  I don’t.

You post a picture of your family, or something you think is funny.  Then,  you go back because you want to see if anyone liked it?  What part of that scenario is about other people?  Yeah.  None of it.  What a bummer.

I know I really enjoy posts from my friends.  I like hearing what they’re up to, and what milestones they’re crossing.  I love a funny thought, or story.  I like cute pictures of pets.  I like to be inspired.

I just have to think about all that.  I have to figure out what is too much from me,  and when enough is enough.  I haven’t figured it out yet.

5. Is my life better and more meaningful with Facebook?

Answer: Yes. No. Yes and no.  Facebook gives me a an opportunity to develop my God given interests and abilities.  I love to communicate, listen and encourage.  I love getting to know people, and I really like to write.  Facebook is an ideal platform for all of that.  I’m grateful I’m alive in the era of Facebook.

We can always have too much of a good thing.   I missed Facebook when I didn’t have it.  I can see there are some valuable things that have resulted from my use of Facebook, but I also liked NOT being on Facebook.  It was relaxing.

Checking Facebook status every quiet moment had become a  fetish. Having a fetish is not like having a relaxing hobby.  Having a fetish is like having an irrepressible tic.  People take medication for that.

I really, really, really liked having more peaceful moments.  I felt more in control.  I don’t want to give that up.

The end result of this experiment is that  I know more than I knew before, but I still don’t really know anything at all.  I don’t think I’m supposed to give up Facebook or blogging right now.   I do think I’m supposed to keep my Facebook app off of my smart phone.  That app is dangerous for me.  Those little red numbers are the devil.  They tell you how many messages you have.  I find that number impossible to resist.   That Facebook app on my phone  to me is  like carrying around a bottle of  Gin is to an alcoholic.  Too convenient.

facebook-notifications

My new experiment is an attempt to use Facebook in moderation.  Is that possible?  I don’t know yet.  I hope it is.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

It’s Celebrate a Good Guy Day!!!

Sometimes men in the United States get a bad rap.   I mean, we do have that whole not letting women vote thing to hold against them.  Those idiots!  I’m still holding a grudge.

Men show up in the news a lot for cheating on their wives,  committing violence,  and operating drug rings.  Sometimes men deserve a bad rap.

I’ve heard plenty about men who suck.  I’m grateful to be living in a country where women have a voice.  Women in the United States are strong; they have the means and opportunity to accomplish whatever they set their minds to accomplish.  THAT is something I don’t take for granted.

I could just as easily have been born in a country where the sucky men outnumber the intelligent men.  A lot of those sucky men are still getting away with oppression.  Those oppressive men are making the good guys look bad.

I know a LOT of good guys.  I was thinking about all the good guys I know.  I mostly ONLY know good guys.  I wish the bad guys would start paying attention to the good guys, and copy them.  That would be a nicer world.

I’m going to devote a blog now and then to a good guy.  Then, all the bad guys who read my blog will see how wrong they’ve been.  They’ll decide to change their ways, and start acting in an intelligent and decent manner.  We will have no more oppression or wars.  Families will stay together, and the world will be an infinitely better place to live.  You will have me to thank, and I can finally rule the world.  I’ ve always wanted to try that.

Publicly honoring good guys is no small task.  Do you want to know the number one thing good guys do NOT like?  Good guys do not like being recognized for being good guys.  Good guys do not like being recognized.  I’m going to have to work my way around that.  I’ll do my best.

If you’re wondering what makes a good guy a good guy, I can’t exactly say.  I can tell you what won’t put a guy on the good guy list.  If a guy has #1 and and his career on his license plate, he won’t be on the list.  If a guy has told anyone other than his wife what a good athlete he was in high school or college, he’s not on the list.  If a guy is married, and he’s super romantic and flirtatious with a woman who isn’t his wife…yeah.  You know.

My first Good Guy award goes to my Brother in Law, Lee Rahn.  Let me tell you what, you should thank me for this.  Getting Lee’s approval to say nice things about him in public was no small task.  I had to do some quick talking, and use a little trickery.  I’m not above it.

Lee Rahn goes in the Good Guy hall of fame for a lot of reasons.  I’ve known Lee for 18 years.  He’s married to my sister, Heidi.  Aren’t they cute?

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Lee and Heidi have two children: Naomi and Caleb.  Aren’t they cute?

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Lee grew up on a farm.  He has worked hard his entire life.  He was fixing tractors and machinery before he hit middle school.  Lee was a quiet kid at school.  He didn’t cause problems.  Well, there was that one time a bully was picking on a boy with special needs on the bus ride home.  That made Lee mad.  That didn’t turn out  well for the bully.  Lee got in a little trouble.

Lee might have been happy to stay a single, working guy for the rest of his life.  He loves to work.  It’s his favorite.  But, then Heidi happened.  She messed up all those single plans.  Lee liked Heidi a lot.

Lee added Heidi to his list of favorites.  After Heidi, Lee worked, hung out with Heidi, sang, taught children in Sunday School,  and worked some more.  His life was still pretty simple.

Here’s a picture of Lee with the kids he taught in Church.  These are “Cubbies”, on a Wednesday night.   It looks like a Cubbie’s Christmas tree.  Cubbies love Lee:

cubbies

 

 

Over the years Lee has served on the school board, taught little Cubbies,  sang in the choir, taught kids in  Sunday School, sang  on the worship team and set up endless number of  chairs.  Lee volunteers a lot.  When Lee tells you he will be there to help you, he will be there.  He will be early.

When people need practical help, they call Lee.  Lee has fixed snow blowers, garbage disposals and fences.  Lee has helped move more pianos than he can count.   Lee won’t let you pay him.  If Lee sees someone stranded along the side of the street, or an elderly person carrying too many bags, he stops to help.  He doesn’t consider not helping.  He doesn’t know that option exists.

If you’re having a crabby day, I hope you run into Lee.  Lee is friendly to strangers.  He smiles at them, and chats with them too.  He’ll probably ask you what you’re having for dinner, and you might forget you were crabby.

Lee loves his own kids.  He loves them a lot.  Lee’s kids have a lot more than Lee had when he was their age.  Like most teenagers, Lee’s kids like technology and staying in regular contact with their friends.   Lee doesn’t understand, but he’s patient.

Lee’s teenage daughter loves her Dad.  Now that she’s older, she’s an awfully big fan.   When she was younger she used to complain.  She would ask her Mom why her Dad had to be so old fashioned!!!  Lee IS old fashioned.  It has never once occurred to Lee in his entire lifetime to try to be IN fashion.   Too bad for a young teenage daughter,  good guys are never motivated by being in fashion.

Lee was too busy working on the farm when he was a boy to play sports.  Lee’s a big guy.  He may have liked sports.

Lee’s teenage son LOVES sports.  His son is very busy with a full sport’s schedule.  Lee’s son excels at almost every sport he tries.

One night Lee’s son was talking about his hopes for breaking a school record in track.  The track meet was the next day.  Breaking that record was all Lee’s son could think about or talk about.  His son was nervous and excited.

Lee didn’t run track.  Lee didn’t  have any advice to give his son on how to build his skills, or   improve his technique.  The morning of the track meet,  Lee walked into his son’s bedroom at 5:30, before work.  Lee put his big hands on either side of his son’s head.  He said, “Son, it’s okay if you don’t break any records, the sun will still come up in the morning.  If you do break any records, remember to give God the glory.”  Then he walked out.

Lee’s son broke a record at the track meet that day.  Lee’s son gave God the glory. Lee is not perfect.  Lee is definitely a Good Guy.

 

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