Expectations and realities; what we expect our life to be and what it is in all reality.
Social Media has done something to my life. Something that my parents didn’t have to worry about. It has changed my expectations and my scope of reality.
My mom and dad only had the Jones to compare to. You know, those folks across the street with the perfetly manicured lawn and the little boy whose trousers were always fresh out of the wash machine. I have to compete with 952 Facebook Jones.
Every day I am bombarded with thousands of posts of beautiful women and perfect children. I see you with your filters and professional photo shoots. It isn’t just the magazine perfect house and the boutique clothing that have me questioning my own life. It’s the calmness in your eyes.
I look in the mirror; all I see is panic. My house is a mess (even though I have mopped twice by 10 am this morning), the kids are still in their pj’s, the girls’ hair is raggedy and their faces smeared with breakfast; the twins have interrupted me at least four times into this post, and the toddler is currently ripping into a candy bar I had not hidden as well as I had thought.
Instagram has fooled me into believing every relationship is perfect. The quotes I scroll through, so beautiful and full of love, yet my heart is screaming at my husband. The endless snaps of perfect marriages, the pictures of happy couples. I am dismayed by my own union. Playing in my head every fight, harsh word and inflating the severity of it dreaming of that white picket fence and perfection I see spewing across my screens.
Our life is a mess. Am I the only one who can admit that?
Growing up that perfect family didn’t exist. We knew it didn’t, my dad reminded us often. “Those fancy clothes were bought on debt and they fight behind closed doors” he would say. Maybe it was easier to believe then, because I didn’t have instant access into their homes on a daily basis.
I know that my life hasn’t always been a normal one. Maybe that is why I have become the person I am today… maybe that plays a part into my family’s chaos. But I have to remind myself; every family fights, every woman bears a scar somewhere, every home has it’s flaw. That is what makes us a family living a perfectly flawed life.
There are days my kids are out of control. Days where I want to pack my bags and run away. Days where I wonder how I got here. But those are not the only days I have. There are days where I look at my daughters’ beauty, my sons’ strength and courage, my husband’s eyes full of love… those are the days I post the pictures. So maybe I am only seeing part of the story. The part I am sharing.
Maybe it’s time we became real. Time for us to share the hardest parts of our life and let someone else know we aren’t perfect and that is okay. It’s time we told ourselves “It’s okay to be flawed, because it is our flaws that hold our true beauty; for in those flaws is where our story lies.”