You come because you fear missing. The moment, the announcement, the invite, the laugh. The need to be in, be a part, belong. Like willingly slipping into handcuffs, you log on, log in, but with the sound of the bird caw you raise you eyes to the window, see the crow dodge and swerve, rattle in the palm fronds.
And then you know.
Time to go outside.
Outside, without devices.
Outside, to catch the missing.
Like the accidental brush with a stranger, the person who passed that spot that one time, who dropped a card you would have retrieved and returned, who would have thanked you with a lingering look in your eye that moved past courtesy. You missed the cloud that blocked the sun just so to create colors and swirls like watercolors meeting in a rinsing bath. You missed sounds uniting in cacophony, unchoreographed bikers and skaters in dance, dots of sand skimming the beach in the wind.
But you never know, for no record remains, no evidence taunts you. And the indoor habit, mighty, forceful, demanding, unwilling to lose, mocks when you stay away, when you return, with etched proof of what was.
There are the online connections, the people who enter your life through serendipity. There is the info, the images, the stories, the words, more and more and more until you drown in what you cannot absorb.
Whenever I leave, leave and fill the void with in real life, I find the me that goes missing in the information age. I find the me of greater confidence, who compares less, who competes less, whose breath grows deeper, whose legs grow sturdier. I find that which I do not know I look for.