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digital pictures

July 28, 2008

At least technology keeps up with our geographically diverse lives.
My life is spread throughout four time zones.  I’ve had to accept that if I’m upset late at night I can’t call most of my close friends, because it’s the wee hours of the morning where they are.  I’ve learned the time zone conversions for phone calls very well, and there’s always World Clock if I get a little confused.
What makes me notice it the most, though, is the digital pictures and videos.  I’ve seen Sara’s ring only on facebook, and I’ll have to wait until Thanksgiving to see it in person.  Katie’s gotten one email of Erik pictures, the normal ones, and at some point she’ll get another email with the goofy pics.  In return, she’s made a couple of videos recently she sends me.
We have whole relationships we share with those we love only through digital pictures and facebook messages.  My entire life in California is disconnected from my family and Michigan friends, shared only in the snippets I chose to talk about when on the phone, and in the pictures I share.  It’s so strange to me, that this is my life, this is the rest of my life, and it’s lived in pieces.  Michigan people aren’t really real to California people, and vice versa, because you’ll never meet each other.  If I wanted to, I could keep my lives completely separate, or make up wonderous stories to tell you.  I know I’m obnoxious about having my friends be friends with my friends, but it’s because I don’t want my life to be lived in pieces.  I want to fly everyone out here right now.   I want my Michigan life to see my apartment here, meet my friends, and shake hands with Erik.  I don’t really know why, but it’s important to me.  I also want my California friends to see just how giddy Sara is, understand why Yin is Yin, and see how much more sense my oddities make when I’m around Katie.  I’d like them to see a family wrestling match and eat one of Mom’s home-cooked meals.
I don’t like living in pieces.  Geography might offer opportunity, but at a price.  I don’t know why I was so willing to pay that price.

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2 Comments leave one →
  1. July 28, 2008 10:40 pm

    We’re willing to pay that price because we grew up in the “land of opportunity”.
    Opportunities for success in a career are given a LOT of emphasis in America. Make your dreams come true, get that perfect job, make some money and buy things to make you happy.
    I am not saying this is bad, but this is what we were raised with.
    Growing up surrounded by divorce and TV drama, it is no wonder we are more cautious to base our lives around relationships rather than careers. In a different culture, I am sure we may feel otherwise. Here though, especially when we are young, we MUST be career driven. Having relationships that hinder career advancement come off as weaknesses. Turning down a great job to stay near those you care about is considered foolish and needy.
    But, how many people feel that way? How many of us wish we could still be near those we care about? Is the majority foolish, needy, and weak?
    Or are we just running on a brain that evolved a long time ago, when relationships were the building blocks of life, and you nearly never needed to move away from those that mattered to you?
    Life is about trade offs. I don’t believe there is ever a perfect situation. Something will always be missing. All we can do is try to find a situation that has a decent portion of the things we need available to us.
    And thank goodness for the internet.

  2. July 31, 2008 7:11 pm

    Yeah it’s a trade off. I just find the longer I’m in California, the less I’m willing to ever do this again. A year into it, and I’m hoping I don’t fall in love, hoping I don’t find amazing friendships, because I don’t want to have to leave all that behind when I leave. I’d rather stay a little distant from everyone here, because I know it’s extremely unlikely we’ll live near each other after school.
    I need to write a post about how I’m just wrong for a career as an academic. *laughs*. As much as I like school, I’m not a researcher, and I’m just not career driven enough to do this past grad school. But, I’m going to lunch with the boy now, so that’ll have to wait.

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