When I created my Facebook profile just a few years back, I happily typed in my religious views: "Greek Orthodox Christian." My favorite quote: "I love you enough to write it in concrete." -- by my dad, Gus Andy. My political views: "Ugh." And all that other nonsense the social media site demands such as education, work, people who inspire you, your blood type (okay, I made that up), your alter ego (I conjured that one up, too), your favorite flicks, yadda, yadda, yadda.
Unbeknownst to me, Facebook would change my life in vast, unfathomable, intangible ways -- both personally and professionally. From a personal perspective, you and I both know that it gives us a conduit to connect with friends long gone, family in faraway places (Greece! Argentina!) and an expert means to spy on asshole exes and contemptible frenemies (guilty as charged).
Once you get sucked into the vortex that is Facebook, you can find yourself clicking and giggling through total strangers' photos for hours. You will yearn to eat Crock-Pot-made turkey lasagna coated in Cheerios. You will distance yourself from friends with run-of-the-mill news like "Going to the gym!" or "I need coffee!" You will long for a jaunt to Budapest. You will grow to despise club promoters. You will get friend requests from people named Momofuko in Namibia. Friends will tag you in hideous photos. You will consequently be forced into questioning alliances. Your mom's friends will tell Mom you drank one-too-many-brewskies on Sunday funday. You will notice all women annoyingly pose with one armed perched on their hip à la Tinsley Mortimer when photographed. You will get friend dumped. Ouch! -- the latter will hurt. This all happened to me. And that's just the tip of the iceberg.
But Facebook is also a shoulder to cry on -- a cyber support system, if you will. When I found myself in the dregs of post-partum depression after the birth of my daughter in '07, even the lamest of status updates from friends such as, "My chihuahua just humped the couch!" or "Rain sucks!" were enough to make me chuckle and piece me back together. The warm glow from my laptop served as an umbilical cord to the outside world during those painful 3 a.m. feedings. I somehow didn't feel alone. I knew this would pass. And it did.
From a professional standpoint, Facebook catapulted me into uncharted, murky waters. I've been a Miami-based freelance writer since I got married nine years ago, and somehow my quirky status updates (example: "Once upon a time, I had abdominal muscles. The end.") had friends and strangers alike asking me to start a blog.
So I started a blog. Said blog covers my surface-level interests -- fashion, beauty and random rigmarole like books I'm reading and Bravo-lebrities. If I feel like writing about 50 Shades of Grey or what to wear on a rainy day, I can! Because my blog gives me the freedom to do so.
And the snowball effect just keeps rolling down the proverbial mountain. The blog turned into more writing gigs, social media jobs, How-to-Blog classes alongside fellow bloggers, swag galore (Gratis mommy porn books! Complimentary juice fasts! Free meals for a week! Cute FREE jewelry!) and Lord knows what else. I'm scared. And excited at the same time. Yay for me!
So thank you, Facebook. While my husband finds your Svengali-like grasp on me as hypnotic, scary and annoying, I like to think you have started something magical for me. And the best is yet to come. And if it all ends here, well, thanks for the "awesome trip!"