Last night, at the ungodly hour of 1:30AM, (a whopping four hours before my alarm would jolt me from reality) I lay in my bed, avidly scrolling through Twitter.
In my defense, I had a terrible stomach ache and was trying to distract myself to sleep. (Yeah, good luck with that, right?) But as I lay there, snuggled up in my blankets and feeling what should have been peace and relaxation, I found myself getting fired up. About Twitter.
I’m not sure what started it, but I’ll be honest, I was shamelessly creeping. It began innocently…I think. I wanted to check up on one of my friends. But before I knew it, I was reading into her tweets and reading her other friend’s tweets and realizing that there was this huge layer of drama that I didn’t even know existed. And here I was at 1AM, scrolling through it all, getting super peeved and super sad and mostly just overthinking the entire situation.
My already aching stomach was twisting into knots. I was getting angry. I was getting bitter. I was getting sad and confused and really just overwhelmed. Apparently so-and-so was mad at me and apparently I was super annoying and I had discovered this all out in a series of (rather immature but still very much on the internet) subtweets.
I was pissed. To say the least. I felt betrayed. How could someone feel a certain way and instead of talking about it…freaking tweet it? I started conjuring up an appropriate, 140-character response. Should I do a low-key subtweet? One that is subtle enough to relate to anything, but still obvious enough to her so that she knows I’m not pleased? Should I take the high road and tweet a motivational, positive, I-don’t-need-your-negativity type of tweet? Should I tweet something totally unrelated so it obviously shows IDGAF even though I totally do? I thought long and hard (probably a solid 5-10 minutes) about this. Then I realized I was being a freaking idiot.
Seriously?! What was I, ten-years-old? Engaging in a battle of subtweets instead of picking up my phone and calling my friend. Instead of having a face-to-face conversation that could potentially squash the drama altogether and let me peacefully drift to sleep at a semi-reasonable hour. Did I really just spend a good chunk of my (rather pathetic) 1AM life contemplating what to put on social media? Was my internet image really that important?
I think I surprised myself with the guilty, inner ‘yes’ I whispered in response to my own question. And that’s when I decided enough is enough. I needed to quit social media.
Life is about living. Which means actually experiencing things—the good, the bad, and the face-to-face drama. Which means being a breathing, existing, real-life human being. One that isn’t living vicariously through random peoples’ Snapchats or spending hours obsessing over 140 character thoughts or staying up until 2AM internet stalking in bed.
I’m over social media. I’m over the scrolling through just to see what’s going on when I could simply ask. I’m over the passive aggressive posts, the calculated captions, and the pictures of every single insignificant moment or memory, just for it to mean something. Just for it to be validated by someone else. Just for the 495 Instagram followers to tap their screen twice then move on.
I want to be real. I want to have arguments with red faces and balled fists. I want to say what’s on my heart instead of trying to twist it into a semi-acceptable Facebook post. I want to cry and laugh and touch the bark on a tree and try an amazing smoothie without snapping a photo. Without having to update the world, say Here I am, I’m living. Can’t you see?