Tuesday, February 10, 2015

AntiSocial Media

In the last 10 days, I have learned:
1: I miss FB.
2: Strike above.
3: I miss updates on FB from people I give a shit about, and who give a shit about me.

So I have prematurely ejected myself from Facebook exile, with a new and improved friends list based on the following qualifications survey:

Would you make reasonable accommodation to attend my wake (unless you yourself are dead)?
Would I make reasonable accommodation to attend YOUR wake* (even as a ghost if that shit ends up being real)?
Are we maybe not quite on each other's Funeral Lists, but you are just that smart and hilarious and I absolutely love reading your posts?
Do you, a) genuinely give a fuck, and b) demonstrate an ability to dial a phone, meet up for a drink/food/entertainment, drive moderate distances when necessary, and generally behave in such a way to sustain a Normal Relationship in the Real World?

If the answer to any of the above is "no," then you're not able to even read this on my Facebook page. But you can read it here on the blog. If you are doing so and wondering, "hey! Why did she remove me from her friends list?!", then I have an additional question for you: If you have not reached out to me In the Real World Or Via Email Where I Told You I'd Be Before I Even Left Facebook AND it bothers you that I unfriended you on Facebook, is it possible that sadly, we are just not really, actually friends? Is it possible that your sadness/anger/befuddlement is based more on the fact that your friends list got one shorter than on the loss of any actual connection between the two of us personally?

No? You really miss me for realzies? Then walk the walk, make the call, show up and be an actual friend, or quit your boo-hooing.

I have reached a point where I am no longer interested in maintaining on a daily (or hourly) basis relationships that have no true meaning or value in my life. I no longer feel the need to hoard "friends" via social media - and isn't that what we're really doing when we cling to long-dead relationships on social media, just to Add A Friend to our lists: hoarding? We totally are.

(Dear "Hoarders: Buried Alive": You need to dedicate an episode to this subject. You'll get a bajillion viewers, if you can get them off their cell phones).

On his deathbed, my father taught me the difference between Friends and Acquaintances. Both are valuable, psychologically necessary aspects of a healthy life. Which is why, in addition to calling/visiting my Actual Friends and Loved Ones, I also enjoy getting all Mr Rogers on my own ass: taking off my scrubs, putting on my play clothes, leaving my house and finding out Who (and Where) Are The People In My Neighborhood. 'Cause John Q Bay View/Public is beautiful/entertaining/fucked up/thought-provoking/hilarious/fun. But I'd rather see John Q at the bar to catch up in person about John's life than read his numerous complaints every goddamn day on my Facebook feed. I'm a nurse. I wipe (and probe) enough asses every day at work - I don't need to do it virtually in my personal social media life as well. And John Q probably feels the same way about me, and I'm okay with that.

Which means those of you reading this on Facebook (my Actual Friends and Family) better plan on, a) a return to my usual broadcast of highly inappropriate humor, brief rants, and miscellanea, and b) save a couple of bucks for my wake, 'cause I can't afford the several rounds of drinks I hope you'll be enjoying while looking back on what you've known of my life and asking each other, "What the fuck was that?"

Ya know, if you can make it. If not, that's cool, too.

Wednesday, April 10, 2013

"What are my faults?"

I woke up this morning and there was a decapitated buddha head on the fencepost in my backyard. I was a little stunned at first, the shock of the image, and then had a little moment in which I wasn't sure whether to be disturbed - did someone try to break into the yard? - or to go with my gut reaction, which was to laugh. I laughed. It turned out that I knew the culprit - a prank I presumed was launched after finding our little backyard buddha broken up by last night's storm, and spontaneously finding a new habitat for the remains. Laughing little buddha head, mounted on a post. It was perfectly, morbidly hilarious. I'm still not sure what this means. The image stuck with me most of the day, that of a smiling, jubilant enlightened one, laughing in the face of a most gruesome demise. I'm still not sure what it means.

Thursday, August 23, 2012

I listened to a show on NPR today that focused on happiness. One person's view on happiness was that people should turn their attention toward what is to come, toward the possibility and/or attainment of future goals. Another person's perspective involved the acceptance of regret in the grand scheme of one's life. And yet another focused on the importance of lowering one's expectations in order to attain satisfaction with what is realistically possible. All have good points. I'm still not sure which one I'm willing to whole-heartedly subscribe to. I do know this: 1) Complete reliance in regard to happiness upon one's future goals precludes satisfaction in the present moment. And all we really have, really, is the present moment. 2) The acceptance of regret, the acknowledgment of one's faults, is imperative in order to realistically set future goals, i.e., one cannot realistically envision nor achieve happiness without appreciation, respect, and acknowledgment of past failures. 3) It is not necessary to lower one's expectations to the point of bare existence. It is only necessary that we rid ourselves of extravagant options enough so that we are satisfied with the choices we make, so that we do not punish ourselves for not making an infinite number of alternative choices. We have to learn to accept that whatever party we are at is a good enough party; that we are not forgoing a "better" party, with better conversation/booze/food/etc. We have to learn to accept where we are and, at least momentarily, forget about where we think we should be, either now or in the future. We have to accept our failures as part of our growth as human beings, and learn to forgive failures in others. Carry on, then.

Thursday, August 16, 2012

The Fold ( i.e., getting into, adjusting to, rearranging)

Note from the Editor: Due to changes in formatting within the parameters of the hosting blog site, spacial/paragraphical spacing is not realized. My apologies for the stream-of-consciousness view of said post. Love, SJT. How fitting is it that I should suddenly get the urge to write on the blog again when it has been exactly one year since I last posted, and only a few posts since my one-year anniversary in the ER. In that respect.... Dear ER, You have whittled every last nerve of my being to a sliver. You have challenged the threads of my faith in humanity, at times to the point of snapping completely. For lack of a better description, you shit where you eat. I feed you, and yet you beg for sandwiches, when I paid $30K to have the right to no longer depend upon feeding people sandwiches for a living. If the gloves are to be truly off...? You demand not only the intelligence, skill, and education of myself and my colleagues, you exude righteousness, egocentricity, presumption, pride. You demand that we cure what has long been a problem. You insist upon quick fixes, when our specialty only demands such in extreme circumstances. And by the way, "dental pain" is not an "extreme circumstance." And yet. You remind me that faith is a human condition, one not dependent necessarily upon a particular system of belief, or on a subjective measurement of (emotional/physical) pain, and that for all of my faults, I am really fucking good at assessing people on this level. You emphasize my strengths, every time a patient comes in with a panic attack, when a child arrives with a broken arm, when a family member wants to know what's going on with their mother/brother/aunt/grandmother who can't speak for themselves, when someone needs an ultrasound-guided IV and I nail it without hesitation, within minutes. You force me to recognize my weaknesses, my limitations, every time I double-check with a doctor before administering the anticipated treatment, when I turn to my fellow nurses and techs and ask them to complete things I simply cannot do, for lack of whatever is necessary, be it time, patience, or skill. You comfort me when I am right, and correct me when I am wrong. Still... In my last post to you, I said we weren't quite Sid and Nancy. This time, more than a year later, I tell you that we are. It's not just you, ER. It's me. There's been a lot going on behind the scenes, growing pains, whatnot. Madi's eleven years old now. She is barely entering middle school, and yet I feel as though I'm already living with a teenager. Concurrently, I am in the process of purchasing my first home with someone whose patience for my financial and emotional ineptitude is clearly under duress. So, what do I do. I remind myself that every coat of paint on the bathroom wall is a step toward improvement, toward definition of our lives together, toward stability and progress. I take deep breaths on my way into your environment, with your beeps and your pages and continual demands for whatever it is The Public needs. I give you every fucking thing I have within the scope of my practice, my scientific, medical, experiential, and emotional intelligence, so that I may help you move along in your life whilst moving forward in my own. One thing I ask of my life outside of you: Please allow me the space to readjust, to take off one hat before adorning the next. To forgive my ineptitude in this regard. To weather the storm of my balancing act while I calculate further steps. Stay with me, ER, and I'll stay with you. Just try to be kinder to my family. They put up with a lot of shit on your behalf. Whether you know it or not. Sincerely, Steph