Real Life v. Instagram

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This morning my son rubbed my expensive electric toothbrush along the base of the toilet.

How did he get it? I gave it to him. Why? Because I needed just 3 seconds of peace to answer a text message.

Just three seconds.

One Mississippi.

Two Mississippi.

Three Mississippi.  

I assumed he would play with it quietly for said three seconds. Nope! Instead he zoomed off and immediately started “brushing” the toilet before I could catch him.

And at this moment, as I look around the room, I see three half-consumed cups of coffee, a pile of dog food dumped out of the bowl, and toys everywhere; none of which I have had the will to pick up yet.

I just got my little man down for his nap after he fought me hardcore for an hour. I patiently told him that I loved him, kissed him, and held him as his overtired body shook with sobs. My offers of love and milk were met with a kick in the face and a cry that can be roughly translated as, “Why do you hate me mom!!!! You’re torturing me!! I don’t want to sleep!!!!”

Oh, and the whole time I was stressing about how much I needed to get some work done for my clients.

Real Life v Instagram
Looking SUPER put together at the grocery store and Hewson is THRILLED to be taking this selfie with me.

With this in mind, I had to laugh recently when, on two separate occasions, friends told me that my life looks “amazing on Instagram” these days.

Motherhood is wonderful, it truly is. I am so richly blessed in many ways and I love staying at home with my son and working from home. I feel so thankful to have this little boy in my life. I have a husband who loves me and beautiful friends and family. And, of course, I would take the chaos that is my life ANY DAY over not having him and these meaningful relationships, but I think it’s important that I acknowledge my life isn’t the picnic that my social media feeds may portray.

As much as I love Instagram (because I love to see and remember the good things from my life and from the lives of others), it’s important to pause for a moment:

It’s Time for a Reality Check Regarding Instagram

No matter what is on my Instafeed, sometimes I feel on top of the world and sometimes I feel incredibly lonely. Sometimes I feel like Superwoman and other days I can’t catch a freaking break. 

And even though things may seem perfectly exciting on Instagram, there are days where I feel I’m stuck in Groundhog Day (again) and like my son’s Legos box has become a metaphor for my life: I constantly pick up the Legos and he constantly dumps them out. He loves to dump them out and screams with delight when they crash to the floor, flying everywhere. This act brings him joy, which brings me joy, but then, there I am again, cleaning up Legos.

This will happen again and again and again. I am so tired of picking up Legos. 

Still, though, isn’t if funny when I feel stuck in the infinite loop of Lego purgatory, I see other women on Instagram with beautiful feeds and I fall into the trap of thinking about how perfect their lives must be. How beautiful and put together. How skinny. How peaceful and calm and exciting in all of the right ways. 

But you know what? I shared this because I firmly believe (and need to remember) that every human on Earth is just like every other human: no matter what our Instagram feeds look like, none of us are perfect. None of us are impervious to pain. None of us feel good about our lives at all times. I’m willing to bet that even women with millions of followers and fabulous feeds feel stuck in their own infinite Lego loop sometimes. I’m willing to bet that we all get kicked in the face (hopefully only metaphorically) by the little people and things we love, and love to post. 

So let’s celebrate what is good, but also remember: you are never alone in your more difficult times and feelings. We’re all in this together, whether our lives appear to be perfect or not.