Diamonds vs. Claddaghs

I’m young. My parents’ generation got married at my age. My mother was married at my age. I’m not even close to that. I get excited about new books and the next tattoo I’m going to get. I get excited when the guy I like texts me, goddammit. So the fact people my age –– especially classmates from high school –– are close to marriage really freaks me out. Here’s one of the results.

“Single” changes to “In a relationship.”

“Who is it?!?” 17 of her 1,042 friends type, and click “post.” “He’s a lucky guy!” 

All 1,042 of you will know as soon as he logs in and changes his status as well. Which will be in, like, five minutes. Hold your horses. Half of you won’t even know him, anyway.  Follow the link and creep. Half of you don’t even know her, anyway.

FacebookLikeLet the Facebook Official (FBO, as it’s often called) nonsense begin, complete with kissy-face photos, longwinded statuses about “the best boyfriend ever!” and vice versa.

I scroll through my feed and laugh at the stupid couple-y messages written on friends’ pages. I did that once, but I know better now. I’m happier now.

“In a relationship” changes to “Engaged to.”

Fuck. Game changer.

Am I the one doing something wrong? Did I miss this memo? Should be meeting someone I can see myself settling down with?

What does “settle down” mean? WHAT THE FUCK DOES “SETTLE DOWN” MEAN?

“Congratulations!” 

“We’re so happy for you!”

“What a beautiful couple!” 

I have a Claddagh ring I switch back and forth on what seems like a monthly basis. Sometimes men want to date you, sometimes they don’t. Sometimes I want to date, sometimes I don’t. That’s college. That’s life. I’m not torn up about it.

“When’s the wedding?”

“Look at that ring!” 

I sip from the Dollar Tree glass I filled with red wine from the box I’ve been working on all semester. I upload pictures from our agency’s trip to compete in New York City. I get tagged in pictures from our drunken escapades the weekend before.

I take another sip.

“Married to.”

Last name changes (maiden name in parentheses).

Wedding photos.

One more sip.  One more scroll through. One more click.

Then I’m back to applying for internships and scholarships, perfecting my résumé, designing the freshman newsletter, writing a story, setting up an interview, proofing students’ papers, (homework?), reading, writing blog posts, updating my digital portfolio, fiddling with my camera.

My 472 “friends” don’t need to know all my business.

Catastrophically minute

I am so self-absorbed.

I think that I’ve had a tough life recently because went through a break up and lost a best friend. But, the thing is, I chose my way. I made my decision and had to deal with the consequences. It makes me sad that I lost my best friend, but I had to have seen this coming. Only an idiot would believe that, despite a break up, a friendship can pick right back up where it left off before the dating began. So when I noticed tonight that he removed me from his Facebook friends, I shouldn’t have been surprised. I shouldn’t have called it immature. I ended it. I made the decision. It’s done. Move on.

And oh, I have.

I have recently been made more aware of the people I’m surrounded by. We live in unison. I’m writing this right now, but someone in the world is brushing his/her teeth in preparation for bedtime, someone else is gardening and this other person is up and on his/her way to work.

Maybe this person’s mom just died. Or maybe, just maybe, that man over there is battling a disease that will eventually claim his body in its entirety.

You just never know.

So I need to stop being so self-absorbed. Because, yeah, Emily went through a break up and yeah, Emily left the cross country team and might not be able to pay for college, but these catastrophic details in my life are minute to someone else. The kid who gets picked on for being gay would rather be in my shoes, as would the man who just got jumped on the streets of New York City.

My problems don’t mean anything. I should stop acting like they do.