Off grid & Free 

Like any Twenty (pushing thirty, but keep that quiet, yeah) woman I have grown up with a social media influenced life.. 

It started with MSN messenger, and my notoriously bad, failing attempts at flirting with that boy I liked for an hour on a weeknight and most Saturday mornings, after  SM:tv Live of course.

Little did I know that later in my teenage life, society would have me hooked up to a social network whenever I wanted, for as long as I wanted. My beloved Nokia 3310 was replaced with a battery slurping ‘smart’ phone as we were, and still are, incouraged to try different and novel ways to communicate. 

As a disabled person the social worlds I can now access through my devices that fit on my knee are great, Facebook means I can keep up with friends in real life and communicate, share in thier joy and allow others to share in mine as I go through life with a disability and show others that my difficulties do not mean disaster, not by a long shot.

While Twitter has allowed me to make friends far and wide with people who would otherwise be strangers, I share experiences good and bad, complain to companies and follow some hilarious folk that are always full of advice. 

I join these Socail outlets for fun because I don’t take myself seriously and because when you boil it down, I am very social. 

I never want to start arguments or wars, I ignore trolls and I will never ram political bollocks or dramas down your throat. I just want to have a laugh, talk about food, and make you realise I am the human embodiment of Bridget Jones. 

Britain recently voted to leave my the European Union, something which had been debated for months and just like any political decision it caused Socail Media to turn like Me on a Sunday when I discover there’s no Bacon… Slightly tense and prickly. 

I believed that it would all blow over, and that both Facebook and Twitter would return to the place I once knew, somewhere where I can have light hearted conversation about things like, the lack of full sized Twister Ice Lollies or the reason why Brian May always wears trainers. It didn’t.

In fact it got worse as I watched in horror as friends I know and love attacked one another using vile language of hate and negativity. 

I posted a status calling for people to remember that the outcome of this vote was out of our hands and what we have to focus on was being kind, tolerant a decent humans. This fell on deaf ears, I realised that I don’t cope well in negative environments and I decided to walk away from Socail Media for a while.

If it wasn’t for the fact I control 4 Facebook pages for various projects and two Twitter accounts I would have deleted everything and gone permanent off grid. 

I didn’t though and after two weeks I was back on Twitter nervously tweeting my messages of kindness. 

 Have yet to return to Facebook and if I’m honest I’m not really missing it, whilst the lure of keeping upto date with friends was once something I revelled in, I’ve also began to realise that there was always a feeling I wasn’t doing enough with my life.

If often see posts about my friends who were out, while I was home or notifications that someone was engaged, married or pregnant as I am aril struggling to find my first kiss.. 

I’d begin to feel sad, low and even occasionally a little bit jealous and it’s only now, without it I realise all that stuff, those emotions, where brought on by Socail Media.  

I know my insecurities, I know that even though my life isn’t perfect or fair I have a lot to be thankful for and I shouldn’t allow myself to get low because my mates are having a better life than me. 

Friends, if they value you will stay intouch and life? Well, it figures it’s self out. 

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