In the weeks since I deactivated my Facebook account (and deleted Twitter, Next Door, and LinkedIn), I can’t say that I’ve missed any of them. Although muscle memory still has me reaching for the phone sometimes, it’s been surprisingly easy to set it back down. The only time I truly miss social media is when I think about those with whom it’s been our only remaining connection. You’ve been the reason I stayed for so long. Overall though, turning away from Zuckerberg and his ilk has been worth the pangs of regret. Now it just remains to explain, and to say goodbye, so long.
Initially, I got off to find quiet, peace. I was tired of Libertarians, Republicans, Democrats, and Progressives. I was tired of overlooking all the ways we disagree, of being told how to think, how to act. Being Switzerland in this uncivil war has been a hard gig. So after these recent weeks of peace, the longer I’ve spent here, the more unwilling I am to return.
Look, I’ve got over 1,500 friends on Facebook. Running for and serving in elected office has expanded my list. Some of you are dear friends, others are political allies (and enemies), and some of you, to be frank I don’t even know. This is for all of you.
To my old friends in California and Chile and beyond, I have loved keeping up with your adventures, your families. I’ve enjoyed preserving our friendships – whether our values align or not. Our relationships mean more to me than anything. One of my great joys is to have witnessed how time has caused peer groups to let loose from horrid mean-boy, mean-girl divisions that separated us in grammar and high school. As you have embraced each other as people of great worth and shared history, it’s been a joy to see what fine people each of you have become.
To members of my family with whom I’ve kept in touch through social media, I’m sorry we’ll no longer have a common platform upon which to exchange photos and stay connected. I guess we’ll have to figure out another way. There will be some of us who choose not to continue communicating. That’s ok too. Each and every one of you has been part of making me what I’ve come to be. We share precious memories and always will. Thank you.
To my political family, some of the best times of my life have been in working toward common goals. Some of you are Republican, some are Democrats, and some long ago left allegiance to either. We’ve prayed together, campaigned together, laughed (and cried) together. I’ve worked my heart out to help your husbands, your wives, and you win elected office. You’ve done the same for me. That said, I’m ready to get off this train. People no longer want to elect those who seek common ground. I no longer want to serve in such a system. Should things ever change I may reconsider, but I no longer expect they will.
To former constituents (friends and otherwise) and my governmental family, I shall miss you deeply. I couldn’t serve without becoming joined to you and your best welfare whether it fits the platform and talking points of a party or not. I still want the best for you, but you are in the hands of others now. I’ll pray for wisdom and compassion to be demonstrated in them, and for our future too. Thank you for voting for me and supporting me even when you didn’t understand (or agree with) my positions and actions.
So this is so long and for some of us, it is also goodbye. I still feel a passion for calling us to our better selves, to remind us of who we once were and can again be if (and when) we’re willing. I am still a compulsive communicator. Can you imagine me leaving writing behind? Naah, that’s not happening. I’ll continue posting on http://www.terimurrison.com. If you like, visit me there and subscribe to my blog. Share them if and wherever you like.
Going quiet has helped me hear my own voice (and God’s) for a change. My voice is saying it’s time to leave social media. I will miss you. Goodbye. And so long.