The usually irritating right sidebar on Facebook

I generally ignore all the information on the right sidebar on Facebook. 

I’d rather Facebook didn’t “suggest” that I become friends with people I’ve never even heard of, let alone met.

I don’t need to know that someone I went to elementary school with just “liked” the page for Wal-Mart.

And the add on the bottom right of my screen right now?  For Gerber Baby Food.  How is that relevant to my life, I ask you?

Today, however, the usually irritating right sidebar of Facebook surprised me.

Today, I noticed, that in addition to all the silly adds, Facebook posts what your status was on today’s date, one year ago.

I’m not sure how long this has been a feature of the right sidebar, and maybe that just proves how good I am at ignoring it.  But today the irritating right sidebar stopped me in my tracks (or stopped my fingers in their tracks? their tracks across my keyboard?  I was never very good at metaphors…).  This is what it said:

On This Day In 2010

Maura Sullivancan’t believe move-in weekend is here already–so excited for the rest of my Shamrocks to get here!!
I posted that status the night before the freshman class of 2014 moved into my dorm, McGlinn Hall, where I was an RA last year.  The Shamrock is our mascot, for any readers who are unfamiliar with the best dorm on Notre Dame’s campus.
Just simply seeing my old Facebook post, there on the usually annoying right sidebar, brought back a flood of memories from just one year ago….of making a playlist to put on as the freshmen moved in their boxes and suitcases, hoping the music would make them feel more relaxed and comfortable…of laying awake the night before, wondering if my 12 new freshmen residents would like the icebreaker activity I had planned for our first meeting of orientation (For those of you curious about how this one turned out, they teased me about my choice until May)…of putting cupcake-shaped nametags on each of the rooms and wondering what the girls who lived inside would be like…of wondering whether I would be any good at this RA thing, and whether I could make a difference in the lives of these girls…
It seems amazing to me that a year has passed already, because I remember those feelings like it was yesterday.  But in thinking back on that time in my life, in knowing that I got to know all the great girls behind those nametags, and that they still liked me despite my silly icebreaker, I couldn’t help but smile.
I’m not entirely sure where I am going with this post.  It’s mostly coming stream of consciousness, as I write, which isn’t how I’ve written posts in the past.  I like to know the point I’m trying to make before I start out, because I always find that helps me write a little more clearly.
But I guess tonight, I don’t necessarily need a point.  I can just marvel at how quickly a year passes, at what a wonderful experience I had.  I’ll just gratefully take the opportunity for reflection that the usually irritating right sidebar of Facebook provided me.  Which probably means I’ll have to stop calling it irritating.
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