I have a love/hate relationship with social media. There are so many awesome apps that allow me to post photos and then with a few clicks, produce a hands on photo album. Remember the days of scrap booking ladies? Oh my — the weekends of cutting, taping, stickering. I love catching up with other people, hearing how their lives are, seeing their kids. It’s fun to travel vicariously through friend’s trips. Social media, in and of itself, is not a bad thing.
However, there is this world that is easy to slide into – the world of “I’m not quite there yet.” We typically don’t post photos of the massive tantrums (unless they are of our cute toddlers) or depression. We shy away from airing our dirty laundry and instead, filter, crop and post our lives to reflect the world we prefer to believe we live.
As my children grow older, I’m more and more hesitant to blog and post about the realities of life. Right now, the lines are blurred between my world and theirs. However, their stories are theirs and it’s often not my place to speak them to the entire world.
You’ve all seen my photos on Facebook. We are smiling, traveling (Florida in March without kids – we’re lucky right?) We are celebrating and living big full wonderful lives. Yet there is an under layer to all those pictures.
What you don’t see are the erratic emotions of each morning challenge and the wild manic ups and downs of unregulated behavior. You don’t see the deep fears I fight every single day as my kids head into this jungle of a world. The worry etched deep in my heart that this will be the day something tragic will happen, this will be the season of great despair.
You don’t witness the petty spats between me and my spouse, often brought on by not enough time together where we aren’t just utterly exhausted or discussing our kids. Add in the season we are in, sandwiched between kids starting to grow wings to fly and parents who are in the late seasons of their lives. Sandwiched between wanting to dream our dreams while knowing the effect the decisions we make now will have on so many people.
Social media is incapable of showing true life. Sure, I can take a photo and explain and hashtag it’s depth. However, that simply does not share the true burdens of life.
I have removed Facebook from my phone. I have made a conscious decision to not get on the computer and phone so regularly. Instead, I have my journals and Bible in my car, books by my bed and a meditation app on my phone.
I want to see people the way I want to be seen. I want to be kind because that’s who I am, not because I should. I want to be authentic and real about life as a mom to a child who is broken and in pain. I want to walk this second half of my life with eyes wide open to others. Want to join me?