In this day and age honesty isn’t something you come by often. We spend so much time taking pictures that show “our best side”, our perfectly matching mommy and me outfits, and the newest and best clothes and technology. We show off a “carefree” lifestyle. But how often are we actually carefree? How many of us are guilty of yelling at your kids to smile perfectly for the Facebook picture? How often do we force them to wear their brand-new clothes that they aren’t allowed to get dirty? If you say you’ve never done this sorry but you’re lying to yourself. We all do it. We want everyone to see how perfectly cute our boys are matching in their little Nike outfits or their matching bows that take up too much of their foreheads etc. How many times do we get so upset and miss out on the fun of the moment because we are so focused on getting the perfect “candid”?
In the spirit of being honest I will share a story about how easy it is to get caught up in the social media façade. Stefan and I took Noah to the aquarium for the first time. We were having the best time until I realized that Stefan hadn’t taken any pictures of me and Noah. I was taking pictures of him all day. How rude was he, right? So? I got angry. I demanded the perfect picture in front of the huge tank with all the fish, but nothing was good enough because I was so caught up in the idea of getting the perfect picture. My legs were too big, you could see my mommy tummy sticking to my shirt, Noah wasn’t smiling (who cared that he was a six-month-old, smile damnit!) I finally settled for a picture because I was frustrated, and Noah was over it. And do you know what I captioned the picture? “My cute little aquarium date today” How annoying for Stefan. I just spent thirty minutes lecturing him and nagging him to death about not getting the perfect picture and completely distracted us from really enjoying the rest of the aquarium. Looking back, I’m not proud of this moment. Not because I was mad at Stefan for not taking any pictures of me and Noah but because of how I demanded a level of perfection from Stefan that wasn’t possible. It wasn’t possible because no matter what picture he took I would’ve judged my body, the lighting, the way it was edited, and I would compare to another mom who seemed to post the most perfectly perfect picture of her perfectly perfect smiling family.
I tell this story not so you can judge how crazy I am (you can if you want) but so you can understand that sometimes it’s not worth it. And I truly believe that it comes from a good place. We just want our Instagram and Facebook friends to see how happy our babies are and how happy they make us. We want to show off Gods little blessings. But look how an amazing day at the aquarium turned into a fight between me and my husband. So, I’ll end with this. Mamas don’t be afraid to post those pictures that you think you look awful in, the ones where dads’ fingers block half the camera, the one with spit up on your shirt, and the one where your double chin is showing because you’re laughing too hard. Those are the pictures that you’re going to look back on and remember the good times. You’re going to remember the amazement in your kids’ eyes in those. Not in the perfectly posed and edited one.