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She poked her head out of the back of the coffee shop trying to see where her receipt was in line for being made. “This is what I get for supporting local,” she thought. “I could’ve just placed my order in the Starbs app and had it ready right when I walked in.”
Deciding to post up closer to the drink pick-up spot, she thought it would signify to the workers that she was in a hurry. She even put an exasperated look on her face in an attempt to bait one of them into asking, “Have you been helped yet?”
It wasn’t until a drink was set down without the barista saying anything that she jockeyed to see if it was in fact hers. Squinting through her sunglasses, she thought, “Of course they spelled my name wrong on it.” Taking a wad of napkins to clean the excess iced Americano off the lid, she exited the coffee shop and headed back to her apartment.
At the moment when she made it through her apartment door, she knew she could finally sit down and complete the task that had been set forth for her at her therapy session the day before.
It went well with “Carrie,” as she referred to her to Todd. The task, however, was going to be more difficult than the session itself.
Sitting down with her iPad, she made a note of which forms of social media she was going to need to get rid of. Facebook was quite possibly going to be the easiest — that is until she realized it was connected with her Spotify and countless other apps that required a Facebook login. Realizing she could deactivate her account and simply delete the app off of all of her devices, she went to the social networks that would most definitely be a little more arduous.
Todd had asked the night before what the purpose of all of this was. She explained to him that Carrie believed she was basing too much of her life off the pressures bestowed on her from social media — a trend the therapist had seen a lot of lately. Todd understood, but in typical fashion, he also couldn’t fathom why she couldn’t just flip the switch in her head that said, “Get off your phone” rather than go through with physically deleting everything.
Todd hadn’t posted an Instagram in well over three months, so it made sense that he wouldn’t get it. She was going to have to embark on this journey alone.
The list she made went as follows:
Insta: Can I just deactivate or do I need to *actually* delete. What if I just post a landscape photo and explain that I will be deleting the app for a few weeks in order to clear my mind? Is that too extra? TBD.
Twitter: TBH, I haven’t used Twitter since college so I don’t even remember my password. I swear to G that if I have to reset my password and the email connected with it is my college email, I will cut someone.
Pinterest: Wait, does she realize this is the focal point of how I’m planning my wedding? I’m going to table this one for the foreseeable future and talk to her about it in two weeks.
Snapchat: Lol, no one even uses that anymore thanks to Kylie and Rihanna. *delete*
“Ughhhhhhh,” she groaned after removing Snapchat from her iPhone. “Where the fuck is my Twitter app?” She used the search function to find it after also wondering, “Wait, do I even have this on my phone? Is it psycho to re-download the app just to delete everything even though I never use it?” It was a valid thought but also an issue she wouldn’t have to confront given that it was stowed away deep into a folder called “BORED.”
The app had updated so many times that she wasn’t even sure where to begin. Frustrated, she swiped onto her page which revealed a series of inside jokes that she had drunkenly tweeted during her senior year.
“This. is. so. embarrassing.”
Thankfully, she had her privacy settings on so no potential employers or creeps could actually see the tweets unless they requested to follow her. After slight consideration, she even debated deleting every single tweet before actually deactivating her account. Unfortunately, after getting about three deleted tweets in, she came to the decision that it would have been too arduous of a process to go through all 779 tweets.
After ten minutes of trying to find the “Deactivate My Account” section of settings, she skipped over all the implications of doing so and rid herself of the hellhole that is Twitter.
“Twitter?” she said aloud to herself. “Deleted.”
With only one app left, she could feel the dread wash over her. She didn’t consider herself to be addicted to Instagram, but she also knew that checking her battery usage by app would reveal otherwise. Going through her old photos from vacations past, she debated whether or not posting a “farewell” photo would come off as ostentatious. A yoga account she loyally followed recently did this and the comments went less than swimmingly.
“Ughhhhhhhhhhh,” she groaned while debating asking Alex what she thought. “I mean, Alex didn’t have to delete her Insta so why should I delete mine?” After that thought, she went to Alex’s account and noticed that even she hadn’t posted in over two months. There was even a Pic Stitch in her first nine photos which signaled how little Alex cared. If anything, now she wondered if she needed to text Alex to delete that photo rather than her entire account. “Ha, how embarrassing for her,” she laughed.
“Okay, okay, the task at hand,” she thought to herself. Unable to scrounge up and photo even worthy of posting on Wednesday morning, she reverted to what Carrie had told her.
Just a month without social media distractions. One. single. month.
She closed her eyes and took a deep breath through her nostrils before finally going to her Instagram settings. Scrolling all the way to the bottom, all she could see was a series of ways to log out of her various accounts.
“Fuck,” she muttered. “Do I really have to Google this right now?”
Going back up, she found herself overwhelmed with the amount of settings options she saw. “No wonder Zuckerberg is freaking out,” she thought. “This is insanity.”
Scrolling up and down, she found it impossible to see any section that would allow her to deactivate her account as easily as Twitter allowed her. With a groan and a sigh, she reached the point she never wanted to reach — the Google search.
“How to deactivate my Instagram account,” she searched only to find the first help page telling her, “Log into instagram.com from a mobile browser or computer. You can’t temporarily disable your account from within the Instagram app.”
She tilted her head back and groaned even louder than she had before. Never in her wildest dreams did she think she was going to have to actually log in from a computer and complete this task.
“Nope,” she finally decided. “Fuck this, I’m just deleting the app.” With her finger pressed firmly on the app that rested on the home row of her iPhone X’s screen, she tapped once again and watched it vanish into thin air.
“Ahhhhh,” she let out. “I’m free.”
And it was at that moment that she scrolled two pages over to Pinterest where she saw Prince Harry and Meghan Markle’s wedding photos had finally been released.
“Ohhhhh, black and white? Yep, saving this one.” .