It is easy to get caught up in the world that I like to call Facebook Fantasy Land. Every woman looks glamorous. Every guy looks cool. And every child looks sweet and well-behaved. It is our tendency to put our best foot forward on social media which is understandable. No one wants to be known as the plain Jane, the dorky guy, or the parent of the tyrant child! So we post beautiful pictures of ourselves, say positive things about ourselves, and brag on our loved one’s good qualities. I honestly think this is generally a good thing if we keep it all in perspective and remember that life is not always a Facebook picture!
The selfie above was taken yesterday after I had a mini-melt down. My head, neck, and shoulders had been bothering me all day and then I was told that I needed to call my grandmother more. I lost it. The truth is that I want to call my grandmother every single day, but a lot of times I don’t feel up to talking on the phone. The physical pain and emotional guilt was too much to handle in one single day so I needed a release. Crying is good for the soul so I do it often. Thankfully, I grew up in a family that taught me that it is OK to cry. Of course there had to be good reason. Drama queen moments were not acceptable although in a house full of girls they happened quite often. Later in the evening I was feeling better, so I slapped on my make-up, put on a pretty dress, cured my hair and snapped another selfie I intended to post. This got me thinking.
What if I kept it real for once and shared the first selfie; the one that expressed the true nature of my day? You know, the one I have not an ounce of make-up on, my eyes glossed over and cheeks rosy from shedding tears, an icepack on my head and a neck warmer for my deeply sore muscles (at least I have a cute dog to comfort me). So often we look at people’s so called lives on Facebook and make all sorts of assumptions. If a girl posts pretty pictures of herself, we often judge her as conceited, but the truth is that she could be struggling with self-confidence. If a mom is constantly posting pictures about her sweet child, we assume the child is perfect, but in all honesty that child may be having problems at home or in school. A lot of times I post pictures where I seem as healthy as can be, but the truth is that I struggle with my well-being daily.
What if every once in a while we were honest about what is truly going on in our world? We do have to be careful about making ourselves too vulnerable on social media, but we know when we are just a little uncomfortable and we need to be genuine. Lately I have been posting all sorts of amazing pictures of myself and my husband. The truth is that these pictures were professionally done and I openly admit that my photographer is a wiz at photo shop. But in person and in everyday life I look just like a real girl and I have some pretty real problems just like everyone else. You know what? We all do. So next time we are tempted to judge someone’s life as perfect based off social media, think again. Pictures are not always what they seem and Facebook is not real life.
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