On more than one occasion I have heard people declare, ” I have to get off of Facebook for a while. Other people are having a really good time at life/school/family/career and I can’t handle it. The perfection and happiness are wearing me thin. ” I will be the first one to tell you that the Book of Face can be quite irritating sometimes. Or I will have a come to Jesus with myself and realize I spend way too much time on there and I have to do my own internet-intervention. However, it has never effected me so much that I get the blues from it. As someone who has lived through bouts of depression and anxiety in my life, I understand that everyone has their triggers and for some, the world of social media can send you into a sadness spiral.
As a person who is on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and who writes this blog; I know that I put the highlights out there. And by highlights I mean the happy shiny pretty moments. While I did a post with pictures of my acne covered chin that erupted shortly before my 43rd birthday; I usually keep my posts on the pretty side.
A friends once said, “Facebook is the icing. I’m not going to put the bad stuff out there.” They are your proudest and prettiest moments. I believe that this is the case for most people. That is the honest truth about all of the perfect family photos, postcard scenes from the beach, and shiny happy social shares. 99% of the time you are only seeing people’s icing. Not the fucked up, lopsided, burnt on the bottom, cake that is their real life underneath that glorious vanilla whipped goodness. That hot mess is all of our lives, but we don’t post pictures of it. I think this is because we can’t have a camera ready in time or we don’t consider those Kodak moments. If I could have photographed me holding my son’s head over a bucket as he vomited while I simultaneously gave a presentation on a conference call I would have. But I felt still photography would not have done it justice. Video would have come with audio, and nothing beats the sound of splattering puke in a bucket.
But let’s get real. Do we really want the awful truth everyday? Do we want to hear that someone ran out of creamer for their morning coffee, broke a nail, and missed a deadline at work? Hell, I use the Internet as an escape from the daily grind. Not for a play by play of other people’s tragedies. Maybe a little balance is in order. A few coffee grounds at the bottom of the latte to remind us that no ones life is perfect all of the time.
I will try to do that here and in other places you may see me on the web. Just look for the perfectly imperfect lady with some gray showing with a husband, kid and several beers. If you’re lucky you might catch some kid vomiting videos.