I received a heart-breaking phone call this afternoon. A friend of mine from my 42nd Street days (10 years ago. wow.) died unexpectedly earlier this week. We had lost touch in the last 5 years or so, but he was, for a short time, one of my CLOSEST friends and still one of my favorite people EVER. I am crushed by this news.
Confession time: I avoid talking on the phone, sometimes like the plague. Even with my best friends or family members, I will ignore your phone call because #introverting. Superman is the only phone call that I will always pick up, no matter what. Dumb, right? But its the reality of who I am.
Even as a child, I was horrendously scared of talking on the phone. I have half-remembered memories of my grandfather calling the house, and he would prank me into thinking he was someone else! Love that guy. But I think he scarred me from the telephone for life...
Recently, I've spoken to people about how silly it is that I haven't SPOKEN face-to-face or voice-to-voice with them for years, but The Facebook, or The Twitter, or The Instagram, or ___________(fill in the blank with the electronic social media outlet) has given me the illusion that we are in touch. I know what cute outfit their kid wore today, or that they did a fun run over the weekend, but I haven't spoken to them in....oh.....7 years. Why is this ok??!?????!
It almost makes me want to log off of Facebook forever. (almost... ) Go back to the old days to handwriting letters, stamping it, and waiting in anticipation for a return letter. Running out to the mailbox, hoping! I miss that feeling! Being ACTUALLY IN TOUCH. The illusion continues... you think you don't have time for this or that. Yet, we spend hours and hours looking at Facebook with that time "we don't have".
Facebook. I hate you but I love you.
The list filled with the names of my favorite people on this earth... how many of them have I actually conversed with in the last year? How many of them called me at one time, left me a message just wanting to chat, and I didn't call them back? The list is super long at the moment, with people sending me well-wishes and gifts, in response to my cancer diagnosis, and then again due to my surviving cancer. Confession #2: I never wrote thank you notes for our wedding gifts. Its not a lack of thankfulness. Its because of that illusion that I "don't have time". No time to connect. No time to be in touch. No time to sleep. No time to drink enough water. No time to do yoga. No time to take my dogs on a walk. No time to TAKE CARE OF MYSELF and ENJOY LIFE. Acceptance. Gratitude. Healing. As anyone who has been reading this blog knows, I have been trying to change many things, and I'm adding this, the effort of keeping in touch, to my agenda.
So my friend dies, unexpectedly, and what would I give to pick up the phone RIGHT *%&$i^#* NOW, even when I'm #introverting (because: weekend), and call him just to say hello??
So, if you receive a phone call from me, or more likely an email, text, Facebook private message, stamped handwritten letter in the mail just to say "Hi, here's what's going on in my life. How are you doing?" ....or a thank you card for the wedding gift you gave me 3.5 years ago, this is why.