Love Letter Day X
I’ve been wondering lately what is the particular damage that has been wrought by all of my exposure to email, social media and chat groups that I feel burnt out by digital communication. I can barely tolerate slogging through a Twitter feed of gotcha syntax, the emotional super-liminal and absurdly short half lives of jokes whose backlash has backlash before I’ve even understood who we are making fun of.
What is the material connection between war correspondence and newspaper? Television? I don’t want to read about people being slaughtered on my dumb phone anymore. This is a comment on medium, not information.
During my maternity leave, I had an auto-responder for my work email which did absolutely nothing to prevent an onslaught of stressful work. In fact the only time auto-responders work is when I’m taking vacation at the same time as everybody else. In other words auto-responders do not work. I decided not long after mat leave to no longer use auto-responders. It’s best just to ignore any email you need to ignore. [That is a real pro tip.]
Group texts are hard but I have no idea why.
I miss handwriting letters and have taken it back up as an irregular habit. I cannot write to everybody I want to. Instead I blog here and some days I think I will die if I stop writing but other days I want to die as soon as the words are in the world.
I miss having callouses on my hands.
I struggle with describing the dreamy as much as I struggle with describing the dreadful.
Digital communication still feels awkward. Still.
I dig my fingers into my own arms when you aren’t there to brace me.
The conversational sublime serves a calculus of intimacy that will forever include digital borders and I am ok with that now, finally, because being “ok” is simply better than being “not ok.” Like micro-plastics in my water system, there’s not a lot I can do about how people connect, and even in praying for reunion in another lifetime, I have to understand: time cannot count itself long enough for us to metabolize anything greater than the magnitude of my affection.