There's something magical about staying up at night, enjoying the sound of silence, while everyone else around me sleeps.  It's even more special on beautiful fall evenings when the temperature is so perfect that there's no whirring of air conditioning running and it's not cold enough to turn on the heat.  Fall is that way, quiet and magical.  I don't know how anyone would enjoy any other season more.

In an effort to dig into the season that I hold in such high regard, I resolved to step away from the clutches of social media in October.  I can't honestly say I'm coming running back to it.  Sure, I logged in to make sure I didn't miss things like announcements about neighborhood yard sales (oh wait, still managed to miss those), happenings in our homeschool co-op, and my local news headlines.  What I needed a step back from was the noise - whether in the form of the insta-awesomeness of everyone I "know", the passionately charged, election-season political opinions of acquaintances from high school, the comments sections of literally everything, the time-wasting Tasty & Nifty videos, the funny memes, just all of it.  I have no willpower.  I can't just look a little.  If I give myself access to it, 2 hours later, I'm taking a quiz to find out what my favorite bread says about my personality and trying to solve the mystery of how two people I know from two different states and stages of life know each other.  It's like the bag of Halloween candy that remains untouched if I don't break the seal, but if it's open, I can't stop myself.  Inevitably though, even small interactions with social media cause my blood pressure to rise, and I get sad and wonder to myself, "Is this really what we've become?"

It behooves me to turn the sound down. It's not just an ostrich-with-her-head-in-the-sand kind of thing.  Literally, good things happen when I step away from the computer/phone screen.  I had this nostalgic thought that maybe I could not know every opinion and life happening of every person I encountered.  I could wonder about people instead of coming into interactions with a pre-conceived notion developed through the lens of social media.  Maybe, I could just get to know people through conversation.  Maybe it would be awkward (because that's my specialty), but it would be true.  Maybe I don't need everyone to know what happens in my life at 10:20am on a random Tuesday.

I started this year out with "Brave" as my 2018 theme.  I'm not abandoning that, but I'm tacking on another word for the final three months, and that word is "Quiet."  There is so much value in turning down the noise.  It's a little gift I'm giving myself.


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