I should start by admitting that this is not the first time I’ve given up Facebook for Lent. Note: this won’t be a blog about how hard it is to give up Facebook for the first time. This time around, I didn’t choose to do it to simply see if I could do it at all. I didn’t choose to do it because I was uninspired about what to give up for Lent this year and felt the need to hit replay (e.g., “I guess I’ll give up chocolate again this year.”). This time, it’s for deeper reasons.
Facebook is a huge part of my life. It occupies my early morning hours before I leave for the day, waiting for the bus, riding the bus, waiting in line, taking a mental reprieve from lecture in class, killing time before dinner, and powering down in the last few minutes before going to sleep. The first time I was introduced to giving up Facebook for Lent was from a friend’s Facebook wall post that she was doing it. I thought, certainly, I can’t do that. The next year, I gave it up. However, I looked at it kind of like giving up an addiction. Facebook was like caffeine: I dreaded my withdrawal. I made it through. I didn’t get headaches — that I remember.
So, I’ve conquered the addiction. I’ve proved to myself I can do it. And that’s what the first time around was all about. This year is different. I chose to do it again because I’ve really started to question what Facebook adds to my life and what it takes away. I still spend just as much time Facebooking as I did before I gave it up for Lent the first time, but the first time I wasn’t learning. I was just proving. This time, I want to ask the hard questions.
The other day, a friend of mine told me she was deleting her Facebook profile, for good. I thought to myself: I could never do that! Who knows? Who knows where this Lenten fast will lead.