Let's Stop Pretending Our Lives Are Always Instagrammable
Last year, I took to instagram for #30daysoftruth and each day woke up and wrote how I was truly feeling that day. I opened myself up on social media in ways I never had before. In those thirty days I struggled with a health scare, body image issues, wedding planning expectations, to name a few. I received varied feedback- mostly positive- but the thing that surprised me most was I was unfollowed by a few people who I thought were “friends.” I guess they only wanted to see my life through a beautiful curated instagram filter, and not the raw, real, everyday stuff we all struggle with.
A person who only knows part of your story, who only sees what he or she wants to see, doesn’t want to hear that you have struggles, self-doubts, or issues. He or she wants to imagine a world where everything is perfectly curated and insta-grammable. Especially when these people are your friends or acquaintances or in your “circle”, it makes them uncomfortable when you open up with your honesty. It makes them uncomfortable because they don’t want to have to face what is inside of themselves. They want to keep pretending that everything is perfect and everyone around them lives these peachy lives and the people who struggle or have issues are on the “outside.” People don’t like to be uncomfortable - so they do what’s easiest for them to do - just unfollow and stop having to face the truth.
Being totally honest, it hurt me when these people unfollowed me. It felt like I was showing them a part of myself and they said “Nah, I’d rather not see that.” They only wanted to see the highlights, which felt like rejection of my whole self. I can’t really blame them though- this society we’ve created- where we only want to see the highlights - is dangerous and disastrous. We create unrealistic expectations of ourselves to have a totally insta-grammable life, and when our lives are real, raw, and sometimes ugly, we feel worthless and get depressed. So I’m going to keep sharing the raw, I’m going to keep sharing the ugly, because honestly, I’m sick of the insta-grammable moments. I’m sick of the perfectly posed travel photo with the stereotypical caption. I want reality. I want to hear the truth. I want us all to stop pretending our lives are always insta-grammable.
This is a photo from our summit of Mt. Whitney, the tallest mountain in the lower 48. While this may seem like a totally instagrammable moment, I let my followers know that doing it in one day was the "worst idea ever," as it took us 18 hours of hiking, and I faced a very gnarly bout of altitude sickness, which involved multiple bouts of vomiting and at one point Matt had to carry my backpack down. This sounds like NBD, but that makes it the first time (but probably not the last time) my husband physically carried my bodily fluids. YAY!