The circle of life

Boy, is it ever May. I don’t know why the timing is the way that it is, but this week, in THIS WEEK alone, I have heard of four babies born to friends (none of whom live here) and the deaths of several elderly folks, including an aunt in my family that I hadn’t seen since 8th grade.

Old and New

Before I launch into a rendition of The Circle of Life, trite as is may seem, it really is amazing to me to think about everything that’s happening right now as being part of the, uh, Circle of Life.

The ties that bind the circle of life, though, are not necessarily the ends and beginnings of things, but just the changes. In addition to births and deaths, there are other changes that can fall into beginnings and ends. We’ve even experienced this at work lately,  with the folks who are retiring or moving on. Seems like a big May in terms of the number of people moving on, compared with previous years at this school. And, of course, working in a school, there’s graduation coming up. And, of course, working in the admissions office, there’s the knowledge of all the new students coming aboard. Another year of our youth program at church has come to a close, including, this year, Josef’s and my decision to stop being youth advisers after seven years of spending Sunday nights there.

My house, I have decided, is DISGUSTING. I am so icked out by it currently. I have cleaned and cleaned, and yet, Hunter’s dog hair is forever inflicting itself upon everything, and there are bugs checking out our house all the time these days, since we live under a bunch of trees and are close to a major river.

Hunter tries to keep fur outside, Mommy. But I will instead bring my fur AND some dirt from the yard back inside with me. Yay!

And, given that we’re in Atlanta, that humidity, well, it’s there, keeping all the dust so tired and stagnant like the rest of us that it coats everything. Ugh. Can’t keep the house clean. I had house guests two days ago, and despite cleaning allll weekend, it still felt like our house was gross. I kept apologizing when I’d see some hair I had missed. They claimed to not be offended, but I still felt horribly about it. So, in keeping with this the theme of circle of life and change, it is time to rid the house of gross things that shouldn’t be there and clean where the sun hasn’t shone in while! It is also a good time to purge even more items we don’t need or use frequently enough to think we need. I’ve gotten rid of a lot of clothing over the past year, but I think I can probably part with even more. Yes, Spring Cleaning is declared.

Ha ha, yeah, that's just what I look like when I clean house, too. All smiling and thoughtful. 🙂

Technologically-speaking, I’ve been thinking a bit about communication. It’s interesting to see the ways we adapt our communication styles and what trends make it and what trends just don’t. For instance, when at school, I know it’s more likely that students will check their facebook messages than their school email, even though they’ve practically been required by the school to check their school email each day for information from their teachers and coaches, etc. Also, when the amount of email I have been receiving becomes overwhelming for me, I also prefer to use facebook’s email, even though it’s completely redundant to do so — I get a message from facebook telling me that so-and-so has replied to my message. 🙂 I’ve heard a lot of people lamenting about the lowering percentage of newspaper readership, how it’s such a tragedy that no one wants things in print to read.  Even libraries are taking the plunge and going completely Kindle, for instance. For my part, I think it’s great to a certain extent to NOT tear down trees to print books and daily newspapers.  Hypocritically, I do love to read novels, especially a brand new one, that I’ve just paid full price for at Barnes and Noble. And, if I ever write a novel, I would want it to be physically published.

But, the point I was trying to make is even I get my information differently than my counterparts of yesteryear, and I don’t think it’s a bad thing. The bad thing, in my opinion, is the massive quantity of information I have access to. I inadvertantly avoid reading much of what gets posted on the news sources I read online, as I don’t have days and days, and instead look at the items that actually interest me. I am not sure what can now be considered “common knowledge” if everyone out there is like me and only wants to read the news that seems pertinent or interesting to them. At the same time, it is quite easy to share articles of interest with one another, so there is some assumed commonality there.

A sampling of social media options out there.

Regarding social media, I have to confess that I find it humorous that so many organizations have facebook pages and twitter accounts. EVERYONE seems to be on that bandwagon. I, too, am on that bandwagon, although I have decided that I am not a fan of tweeting. It’s just not me. What was once MySpace’s domain in my eyes, is really Facebook’s — it won the social media battle by not being so clunky, I think it. It’s a lot more intuitive to use, easier to find friends, and is cleaner looking. But, MySpace is the place to be if you’re in a band. I will give it that. I’m not really a fan of LinkedIn, but can’t really explain why. Classmates has also not done well –Facebook is better at tracking that information, too. I do like blogging, obviously, and have experienced switching from blogger to wordpress, but can’t really explain why I did that.

This says Social Media Landscape. I think it could just say "Overwhelming."

So, I will leave you to ponder the ways that change makes you realize that it’s all just part of life, whether because phases of things-that-have-been are ending or because you’ve just experienced something new. Whatever the case, I take comfort that everything is relatively normal, and though the details are different, this is how life is supposed to be, at least until the new bandwagon comes along. 🙂