I’m leaving Facebook, & I urge you to also. (+My 2 step process to save your data & delete)

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A personal note from me:

For years people have told me that Facebook was ill-intentioned, I told them to take their tin foil hats off, Facebook was fine, and we’d all know if it got dangerous. Well… recently Elon Musk made it clear he doesn’t trust Zuckerberg or Facebook and is terrified by what they are trying to do with Artificial Intelligence. It perked my ears. Now with “Cambridge Analytica”, we know it’s worse than the worst nightmares we could have had about it. Read my summary of recent revelations here, and then below on how to get out now, which I URGE you to do. -Gregory Andrew

 

Background Information, how’d we get here?

What happened? (This is the straw that broke the camels back, and it’s so much worse than we thought)

Cambridge Analytica Execs Caught Discussing Extortion and Fake News

Was Facebook really at fault? Or aware? YES.

Mark Zuckerberg says Facebook made mistakes

Are they doing enough? Should I give them time to fix it? **No.**

Read this by a Facebook co-founder: Sean Parker: Facebook takes advantage of “vulnerability in human psychology”

 

How To…Here’s the 2 step process:

1) Download a copy of all of your Facebook data

Download your Facebook data

2) How to delete:

Delete your Facebook

 

Optional Step:

2) Export your contacts email addresses from Facebook

(Most emails are probably not up to date, really this step doesn’t matter much at all other than for those that know it’s important to them):

How to export facebook contacts to Gmail

As much for therapy as this is for memorial.

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I think back on a day a couple years ago when I wrote with my whole heart, a goal in written form and what I remember most is the reception received. Many spoke in support, but 1 voice stands out to me, as she was always in support. If you wrote or created from the heart, if you expressed life artistically, she lived and thrived through you. My Auntie Lisa, now my angel, I’ve not been able to confront losing you and all I lost that day. You by the hand of my mother revisited me on my birthday, months after your life here as I knew you ended, but for one last time you surprised me with love and support. I will cherish your card and message to me forever. I will forever be touched by this, it shook me awake in a way I wish I could have done to myself only 6 months ago. That night I told you I lost respect for you for something that should never have come between us, and it was the worst thing I ever said to you, the only terrible sentance I ever uttered in your direction. And it will forever be the last 2 way conversation you and I will ever have in this life. You didn’t deserve that, but I was scared. My auntie, who spent her life fighting for my rights, and fighting for my life, to be aligning with groups against everything I am, scared the hell out of me. It is no excuse, my anger was mearly my inability to communicate in a way that would help you see, the way I saw it, the error of your actions. I thought I had lost an ally. But in looking back, your aims remained the same as ever. To protect me from the threat you could see, as best you could see. And as you said, you will never apologize for the way you see something. And you shouldn’t Auntie, you never did, or should. You’ve always done the job of loving and protecting me and all you love wonderfully. If only all of us could go through life with such pure, loving intention. You’ve again humbled me, Auntie. I will be learning the lessons you taught me, all my life. You are magnificent, and I am proud to be the product of so much love. ❤️

“Just know, deep in my heart, you are my golden threads” -Auntie Lisa

“Everyone wants to be us…”

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I can’t help but feel a strong connection to the end of “The Devil Wears Prada” where Miranda tells Andy “Everyone wants to be us”. You can see the disappointment on Andy’s face when she realizes she’s living the dream of “a million girls”, and it’s not what she wants.

I always dreamed of living in Silicon Valley, working at Apple, and I’ve done just that. At 18 I started working in the Apple Retail Store as an Apple Genius. I stopped going to school because I had gotten a job a my dream company. Why, I figured would I not focus on my role at Apple. I’m happy I did that, but it has really limited my ability to grow. I’ve grown in spite of it, but it made it more difficult.

Now we look at my life today, I’m 25 years old. I’m working at the most valuable company in the world, and without a college degree I am supporting one of the most Senior people in my org. My work and my ethics have enabled me to reach the point I have. When people find out I don’t have a degree, they’re astounded at what I’ve achieved. I believe it’s a testament to my personal growth, and determination.

Tim and I have talked many times about if we were happy here in California. We have great friends here, we’re making more money than we dreamed we’d made before 50, and I mean… it’s California. We’ve been investing in our careers and that was the right thing to do… but that chapter is coming to a close.

In living a life that it seems many people envy, I’ve realized many things. The most important realizations are happiness lies in experiences, and interaction with others. I will never regret any chance I’ve taken, and all of my successes and failures have gotten me here.

It’s time for us to go back to Austin. This is happening for many reasons, but the most senior among them being… we’re happier there. We love the city, and feel good being there. I will be able to return to school and become an Architect which I’ve wanted to do since I was 3 years old (according to my Grammy). We will be able to plant roots in a place we love, and grow them.

So yes, while it may seem like “Everyone wants to be us”. We, like Andy… know it’s wonderful but not perfect. We love what we do, but more importantly we now know what’s most important to us. Silicon Valley is the valley of working your hardest, for incredible benefits and great pay. But to do well, you have to sell your soul and your time. Tim and I feel we can find a good balance in Austin. Happiness and success awaits us.

Please join us, visit us, and celebrate with us. This is truly a homecoming and it feels wonderful.

Foundation of life

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Every person has a foundation from which they grow. I grew up with it as my point of pride… I was very proud of where I came from, and everything we had. I knew it wasn’t perfect, but I believed I was better than most, and knew I had better than most, and so I kept my lifestyle up to that standard.

Ten years ago, my life as I knew it fell apart. I had a large part in that, I couldn’t see the impact it would make. It had lasting effects, both good and bad. My life has made me who I am, I do not regret anything, but I have spent most of that ten years trying to find that foundation again, or rebuilding it in several ways. I know that feeling of home, I miss it. I miss the security, and pride I had for my life. I feel like I’m constantly being pushed to feel less about what makes up, me.

I don’t feel proud as an American, I don’t feel empowered by being gay, it’s just a part of my life – but it hurts that people see something wrong in that. I know first hand the beauty and honest ability of my Church to improve anyone’s life we help and all we do, but some would rather go by rumors from people they don’t know, and so makes it harder to be proud and hold my head high about that too.

I want to feel pride about my life, my whole beingness. I can grant myself that, but it seems like so many things easily invalidate it. I’m not saying I don’t know where to find the answers, I do, but I don’t myself right now know the answers. This is just where I’m at in my journey.

I will continue to work on improving myself, which will in turn become my foundation. Unlike others, I will have placed my own foundation beneath my feet brick by brick. No earthquake will shake it, because it will be as strong as me. I’ve proven how strong I am… now to be comfortable and proud about it.