There’s a lot of judgment and comparison going on in the world today. It may seem a bit different during a pandemic because we are currently judging and comparing the social media images of people and not the real life images of people, but honestly it’s not as different as people may think.
I’ve read so many books and articles about how people put up a façade on social media and don’t show people the “bad stuff” or who they truly are. The truth is y’all – we do that in LIFE, not just on social media platforms. We go around with smiles on our faces saying everything is “fine” while constantly questioning ourselves and wondering if we will ever be “enough.” We pretend to have this super high energy and relentless enthusiasm for life, but we know the second someone took our coffee away, criticized our work, or turned down the lights even slightly, we would be on our knees in the dark. We set huge goals and share big dreams, while forgetting to talk about the hard stuff that is our day to day life.
I often see people ask about how someone’s workout went, if they accomplished their goals for work, or inquire as to whether not they had their “me time” today. There is nothing wrong with that whatsoever, but that’s not all there is.
These are the real questions that run through my head.
- “Am I parenting my kids as well as they need and deserve?”
- “Am I being a supportive and loving wife?”
- “Am I talking to my family and friends enough and letting them know how much I love them?”
- “What if someone in my family gets sick/dies from COVID?”
- “How are we going to afford our health care deductible?”
- “What can I do about the division in our country?”
- “Is dinner good and nutritious enough for my family?”
- “What else can I do?”
- “Am I enough?”
- “Is God proud? Is my family proud? Am I proud?”
- “Am we going to make it?”
Do I want to talk to you about the weather, sports, and your dream vacation – of course – AND, I also want to talk about what’s really going on. I want to move past the pleasantries of “hi, how are you?” which in social media world translates to “oh hey, girl” and get to what’s real. The hard stuff, that’s also so damn beautiful.
- The kindness I witnessed by my older daughter when she helped her little sister pick up her toys
- The laughter of my 1 year old and her no fear attitude that both terrifies me and makes me so proud
- The book I’m reading, “Untamed,” by Glennon Doyle, that makes me want to start being more “me” and less what I think people want me to be. I mean honestly, I don’t even know what I want “me” to be, how the heck can someone else know?!!
- The prayer routine my oldest daughter and I have created together.
- The beautiful purple sunset that I feel like was sent straight from heaven to remind me that everything will be ok.
I can’t help wonder that if we didn’t pretend to be so tough and act like we had it all together, would we be able to find ourselves and each other? If, rather than spewing arguments at others across twitter we asked people what was causing them so much pain? When we feel worried or scared, what if we told someone rather than shove it down deep inside and keep grinding away? When we see someone that looks like they “have it all” what if we ask them what their keys to success are rather than instantly judging them?
We are an imperfect species. We screw up, we make mistakes, we let people down, and we think too much about ourselves and what others think of us. AND – we are also an incredible species that God created with love. We get up every day and bring every ounce of what we have to the world. We try to love and live the way our beliefs have shaped us to do so. We do the best we can, with what we have, where we are. In the words of Real World, (yes I just went there!) we need to “stop being polite, and start being real.”
We need to ask the tough and next question and share what’s really going on. We need to connect more and judge less. We need to show up for the world as our best selves.
We don’t need to have it all but we do need to GIVE IT OUR ALL.
2021- you are going to be a tough one. None of us have it all figured YET, but we can commit to trying even if we don’t have all the answers. IF we can find a way to be vulnerable, create real connections, and come together as our imperfect selves – there is nothing that we can’t do. We may not have it all together, but together we can have it all.
Let’s go make some lemonade this week my friend