Hello, my name is Janise, and I am a Facebook creep.
Even as I sit here typing out this post, I have a Facebook tab open, on the Facebook page of someone who I have never met, or spoken to, or am even Facebook friends with. I do this a lot. And I mean a lot. I don’t even know why I do it. To be fair, the person I am currently creeping on is actually the fiance of my estranged brother, who is several days past her due date with their unborn daughter, who conveniently has all of her posts set to public. At least twice a day, for the last two months, I have been checking her page for updates, since I didn’t know her official due date. Is this weird? Maybe. But I mean, she’s not a total stranger. She’s my brother’s fiance, and that’s my unborn niece, so I’m not being that creepy, right?
(I’ll definitely keep you posted by the way. She hasn’t posted anything on Facebook in nearly 24 hours, when she’s usually a pretty regular meme poster, so I’m thinking there might be some baby action going on.)
*Baby Update 1/14 12:00 pm: She went in for an induction this morning, a week past her due date, and a good 8 hours later, she is still only 3cm dilated.
*Baby Update 1/14 11:00 pm: They just announced via Facebook that my little niece has finally made her entrance. Welcome to the world, Mistaya Marie Myer. Auntie loves you so much already. Hopefully, I’ll get to meet you one day.
However, she’s not the only person I creep on. You see, I am very prone to getting something similar to flashbulb memories, and I get them quite a bit. For those of you who never took Psych 101 in high school or college, according to Wikipedia, a flashbulb memory is a “highly detailed, exceptionally vivid ‘snapshot’ of the moment and circumstances in which a piece of surprising and consequential news was heard.” So, songs, YouTube videos, a sound, a smell, a saying… I am able to recall very vivid memories, both good and bad, very easily. Because of this, and my very curious, nosy nature, I am constantly reminded of people from my past, and NEED to know what they are up to these days, even if we haven’t spoken in, say, 15 years or more.
Segway segway segway.
So, last night, I was watching a YouTube video that included some lovely volunteers in a nursing home, and I immediately recalled the summer that I joined the junior CNA program at one of the nursing homes that my mom’s accounting firm worked with. I was one of four junior CNAs, and we were all around 12-14 years old or so (I don’t actually remember the exact year this was, and my mom and I have very different recollections of the time frame, so, sorry). The building was large, and beautiful, and had three floors: Short Term Care, Long Term Care, and the Alzheimer and Dementia floor, which was where I was usually stationed.
I loved being there. I spent most of my time helping to wheel residents around, painting nails, writing handwritten letters, helping to serve meals, and just providing company to anyone who needed it. There was one other girl who was in the program, who was the daughter of one of the staff, and she usually spent most of her time doing office and clerical work, and I almost never saw her. The other two in the program were boys, and cousins. One’s name was Ford, and his cousin’s name was… well, I don’t remember. Let’s call him Charlie.
Ford and I worked together most days on the Alzheimer and Dementia floor. He was tall and blond, with bright blue eyes, and we had the same taste in music. Whenever we had downtime, we spent it talking to each other, while his cousin occasionally tagged along. Ford lived in a different town than me, and I knew that once the summer was over, I’d likely never see him again, but that didn’t stop me from becoming totally smitten with him. Unfortunately, like I knew would happen, at the end of the summer, we went our separate ways, after exchanging phone numbers. I tried to call him as often as I could, and we sort of became long distance boyfriend and girlfriend.
As you can imagine, that didn’t last long, and we eventually drifted apart.
That was somewhere between 15-17 years ago. I haven’t seen him since.
So, I’m watching this video on YouTube, and I get this vivid memory, and I immediate recall his name. First, middle, and last. So, being the curious creep that I am, I type it into the search bar, and his face popped up. Same blond hair, same looming stature, and those same baby blues.
I didn’t send him a friend request, obviously, because I’m not that creepy. I didn’t want to reconnect, or form a friendship, I just wanted to see what he’s done with his life since that summer we shared at the nursing home. Well, just in case the suspense is killing you, I’ll tell you that he never moved farm from home, he went to our local community college, his tongue is pierced now, he still listens to all the same music we did way back then, and he plays World of Warcraft. Honestly, if I wanted to be a full-blown creep and send him a friend request, I bet we’d actually be friends.
Ford isn’t the only person from my past that I’ve creeped on recently either. There was a girl named Callie, and another girl named McKayla (both gingers, funny enough), who were two of my best friends in elementary and early middle school, who both moved away sometime before the 7th grade. The last time I saw McKayla was on the playground in the 5th grade, when we had formed an all-girl group, where we sang and danced to various pop songs that we knew. We called ourselves the Kitty Kats, and all had cat-related names.
I was the leader, obviously.
But I never sent her a friend request, even after finding her on MySpace, and then later on Facebook. She’s still a ginger.
Callie and I crossed paths a few times later in middle school, after she had moved away, when our schools would play against each other on the field hockey field. Just a few years ago, actually, she added me on Facebook, and sent me a few pictures that I had drawn for her in the second and third grade, and that gave me the warm and fuzzies. But before she finally found me, I had found her a few dozen times over the years, but never sent a friend request. She is also still a ginger, and now has kids of her own.
I’m also guilty of checking in on the exes that I’m not on Facebook friendly terms with. Honestly, there’s only two of them. I’m friends on Facebook with nearly all of my exes. One of the two has me blocked, and the other likely hasn’t thought about me in 10 years, but I still check in on them from time to time. Once again, for no real reason other than curiosity. I don’t particularly miss either of them, or want a friendship with either, but it’s interesting to see the paths that people take once you’re out of their lives.
For the record, one of them is doing very well for himself, and I am very happy for him. The other… well, he recently had a DUI resulting in a bad car accident, and that’s all I really know about how his life is going.
Am I the only one who does this? I know there are people who like to creep out of spite, or out of longing, etc., but for me, that’s not it. Sure, sometimes I find myself missing certain people, or thinking back fondly on the past, but I have no real desire to reconnect with them. Just to, well, creep on them. There’s actually two or three people that I regularly creep on who were pretty toxic individuals in my life, who I don’t miss whatsoever, but they have kids, and I love me some cute baby pictures, so I periodically peek in at their social medias from time to time.
Seriously, does anyone else do this? Please, tell me I’m not alone here.
Now, if you’ll excuse me, Baby Watch 2019 is still in effect, and I need to tab on over to Facebook and refresh the page.
Nope. Nothing. Damn. (She’s here now!)
Anyway, thanks for reading, friends (and fellow creepers).