before lent began i sat down and asked myself what are the things that i run to when i want to make myself feel better, that are not necessarily in my best interest? the answer was easy: social media, shopping, and chocolate. and just like that my decision was made and i gave up social media and shopping for lent. “why not chocolate?” you may ask. let’s not get crazy. also i’m sorry have we met?
here’s what i realized: i didn’t miss social media or shopping. neither brought anything good or lasting to my life. now i’m not saying that next time my kids grow out of their socks and need new ones that i’m going to tell them to firm up and focus on what really matters instead of buying them socks, but it became obvious that each online inquiry was an attempt to flee my own reality for greener, better-dressed pastures. it also became clear that i didn’t feel like a total waste of space and utter failure because i didn’t see pictures of people nailing it at every turn. in fact, it was a nice break from the temptation to compare my day-to-day reality with someone else’s highlight reel.
best of all, i began to see the beauty in my own pictures.
during this time the girls needed something special, something out of the ordinary. my husband is a pastor and there are seasons when he is slammed at work, and during this particular one the girls needed something to look forward to. we decided we would look forward to “fancy dinner”. this began with an invitation for daddy with instructions for him to come dressed in his sharpest tie. we went to the grocery store and i let them pick out their ingredients for pizza and brownies. they helped me make dinner, they set the table and folded napkins. the girls then adorned themselves with their most blingy plastic jewels and fancy dresses. daddy came home and they helped him pick out his tie and there was pizza and brownies for everyone!
i wanted to take a picture and share with you that it was such a win and you should just let your kids decide what you are going to eat and help make it and get the fancy ready, when i looked at my sweet toddler who was just holding her face and shaking it back and forth. this was not her pick.
she had bracelets strung on her arm and she had clothes on. not fancy clothes mind you, but she’d much rather eat au natural. and i had to giggle because it was one of the first times i realized how many people live here.
we’ve got five people and one old ornery dog y’all and i have been shooting too high. i want everyone happy at one time and statistically speaking that’s just not going to be my most consistent reality. there are tears from harsh words spoken and people being mean at school. there are disappointments and hopes deferred and things just not going the way we had planned. there is real life all up in this piece and if my goal is the social media worthy pic i’m going to be let down 99% of the time.
i’m not a hater. i logged back into social media a few days ago and bought myself a dress at old navy and didn’t feel bad about either! my worth will not, however, be defined by likes or comments or the ability to dress in a fad before it is soooo yesterday. the beauty of my picture is that we are all together helping each other through. through bumps and bruises and tears and losses, but also through wins and rejoicing and success and achievements. but we are in it together. we are in the frame whether we are at our best or not and we are staying in it, come what may, because of love.