Real life is defined as “life as it is lived in reality, involving unwelcome as well as welcome experiences, as distinct from a fictional world.”
For a long time I was very wrapped into my online life (url) and was really missing out on real life (irl). I have a history of preferring to spend my time in front of a screen than living new experiences. My young adult years have been flying by and for the first several of them I was engulfed in what was happening on twitter or snapchat. Even as a little girl I would spend my entire summer on Neopets interacting with strangers instead of going outside to make friends and learn how to have interpersonal social interactions. This “url” life I was living isolated me and affected my social skills over the course of my entire life.
It wasn’t until recently when I realized how boring the Internet and social media can be and how I was missing out on opportunities to be young and carefree. Additionally, many people are very different online than they are in person, and it made me uncomfortable to realize that I was definitely one of those type of people.
However, on #NationalMentalHealthDay last year, I decided that I wanted to share a really important part of me with my family, friends, and even strangers on Facebook. I wrote a public post about my journey and struggles with mental health. My goal was to inspire people and to help work towards breaking the stigma on mental health and illnesses. It made me feel really good to finally share who I am in real life online and after I got positive feedback on both my writing and my courage to be so open, I wanted to continue to marry my real life and my online life through writing and photos.
This new outlook on myself and how I portray my identity motivated me to want to follow my dream of having fun and new experiences instead of solely existing behind an impersonal gadget. Contrarily, I still love the Internet because I can connect and converse with people from all over the world. Ultimately, I want a balance of remaining present in the moment while also living in the 21st century. So, I’ve created this blog as an opportunity for me to express my life through my passion of writing. I hope my posts influence you to stay connected to the reality around you, while still staying connected to the screen.