Social Media, Fantasy Island and One "Tired" Woman
I feel inspired to write!
As usual, I know it has been awhile but can we agree from here on out to just skip the part where I have to explain why it has been so long every time I write a new post?
I love ya'll! You really have a sister's back.
So, let me start off with saying it has been a rough few months. Real talk. So much has been going on, and frankly a black woman was tired. The climate in the Country is straight up crazy. (Shoot, the climate in the world is certifiable, med worthy, institution committal looney...like watching the news has your girl ready to pack up and head for Mars...you coming or nah?)
Everyday was a struggle just to function. I swear a spirit of depression had just settled in the air and, if you weren't careful, you would wake up and breathe it in on accident.
To make it all worse, it's like the climate as of late has a serious attitude and decided to throw major shade (minus the actual shade) by giving us one of the hottest summers of all time complete with breakout fires, severe storms with hail and flash floods, and humidity so unbearable it has left ALL of our edges in the struggle no matter your ethnic background.
The whole thing was just no bueno.
Good news had been hard to come by, and authentic good news was even more sparse. Hope had been picked up only to be dropped so much that I had lost count. Holding my breath for relief had resulted only in me passing out due to lack of oxygen.
Digression because I feel somebody getting sensitive and ready to either be deep or make this about them. Let me help you:
Look, this is like my online diary, and truthfully, it's one of my safe places because it's my blog. I write it for so many, but God forbid the therapy of it all escapes me. I need a place to be transparent. So, chill out. I said I was tired and drained a little bit. Don't worry, it gets better. Allow me my dramatic moment. It makes for great story telling!
Ok. We're back.
Which brings me to my point and title of my post.
Social Media, Fantasy Island and One "Tired" Woman
With all that has been going on, I had to stop and acknowledge that "superwoman" was running on empty. The usual places I would go for some sort of rejuvenation had been severely tainted, and I was in desperate need of a mental, emotional, physical and spiritual break from "adulting" (= the consistent act of being responsible, navigating through life's affairs, making crucial decisions that not only impact you but others around you, balancing the never ending demands of life, while trying to ensure no balls are dropped as you desperately try to avoid drama and pitfalls...to no avail).
No matter where I turned, life and it's poorly crafted message "here I am, deal with it," was staring me in the face, and all I wanted to do was to punch it in its. Instead, I was like...
What makes all of this messed up is that while I have had a lot on my plate, it really hasn't been as bad as my perception would have me to believe. Which again not only brings me to my point but is the center of it.
While I was handling my business over these last few months, I expanded this really nasty habit of watching other people's highlight reels on social media to "pass the time" and most of it has been brilliantly staged 'cause I know some of ya'll and them pictures are telling LIES!
I mean forget an Oscar. We need to start a Social Media Awards because the acting that takes place on these platforms should be recognized. I mean it's so bad that if I had to choose between some of these people and a corrupt politician 'cause they were the last two people on the playground as options for my "integrity" all-star team, I would have to be like:
Deep Sigh. Just one big global warming, destructive, killing me daily air filled deep sigh.
It's was all too much. No breaks on any side, and I was going down fast.
Here I was entrapped in my reality trying to figure out what I had done to make God so mad because while folks were apparently having the time of their lives, I was over here fighting brush fires with a cup of water and a straw broom. It was all too grown up for me, and I had run out of creative ways to quit without looking like a failure.
It was then, Brow"nistas, that I had to have a come to Jesus moment...more like encounter...more like 3 day revival...more like Holy Convocation 'cause I was OUT OF ORDER! Here I was (and am) this dynamic woman of God who was all the way broke down. Holy Spirit had to talk to me (more like read me for filth) because I was completely off my rocker.
Ya'll know I l have to share these nuggets of wisdom with you after it's over (you really should appreciate me more as you benefit greatly from all of these spiritual "whoopings" I take).
I put it in a list (copy and paste it so you can refer back to it often). Yes,you're welcome.
1. Calm Down. It really isn't that bad. So, you're going through a process. Greatness always requires a process. Do you want to be great or look great? You decide. Either way. Stop complaining.
2. Stop doing so much. Sometimes, it is not glorious to run yourself in the ground. Nobody asked you to be everywhere, all the time, doing everything. If they did, go to lesson #3
3. Learn how to delegate and how to say "no." (No, this ain't new, but you keep forgetting!)
4. Watch your environment (our society is filled with toxic activity that we call entertainment. If your entertainment literally leaves you with a headache, feeling drained, and even has the potential to bring you harm, you need to rethink your definition). My husband has turned me on to so many great activities that have literally restored life into me. (Who knew old school Kung Fu movies were so awesome?)
5. Take a break from social media
6. Take a break from social media
7. Take a break from social media:
Ok. Listen. Some of us are on the "interweb" too much and you have to be careful because so much stuff has a social media element to it. You can't seem to get away from the "likes" and "views" long enough to really determine whether or not you really like or want something because you really like or want it. Competition and Comparison have been brilliantly interwoven into the very fabric of our lives. Everything seems to be driven by what will be seen. It's bad enough to balance everything we do, and to attempt to do that well, without having to bring in the added pressure of how many people will validate us for our efforts and accomplishments by liking, viewing, sharing and commenting on our posts.
Like, right now, I am preparing for back to school for my kids. What does it really mean to me for you to like my posts about all of the school supplies I bought or me dressing them up and staging them to take a picture in their uniforms because I too would like 100+ likes as I scroll through a sea of back to school photos? Truth, I am already tired from thinking about the running around I have to do to make sure all three of my kids are taken care of for the school year. Why subject myself to the judgment that is sure to come from me comparing my efforts with someone else's pictures on social media?
Wow, she already has her kid's school supplies? Why am I so late?
Wow, they were able to afford those shoes? I can't get those shoes.
Wow, their kids go to that school? I'm failing my kids.
Wow, how come their posts got more likes than mine? They don't even take care of their kids!
See my point?
It's all unnecessary, and just being honest as a woman, wife, mom and more( who has so much going on) I just can't keep subjecting myself to the foolery. At some point, I have to take a break. I have to make sure that I don't miss the moment trying to photograph the moment so I can post the moment to convince you there was a moment.
Side note: who are these people who have photographers following them around to take these "candid" photos? Did I miss something?
Ok. Let's finish the list:
8. Get back to the Word. God is the only One and the only place where you will remain centered. In all of my busyness, when was the last time, I took the time to spend it with Him? Oh, I had the time. If I had time to get lost in "reality" tv or hours on Instagram, I had time. I kinda forgot I needed that time.
9. Get back to purpose. Yes, "brow"nistas, we do a lot. Don't let that become your idol though. Make sure you set aside the time and effort to do what God called you to do. Don't put off your purpose for daily errands. Leave the laundry unfolded. Those socks can wait.
10. REST. Rest is too important to neglect. Shut it all off if you have to. Give yourself permission to miss somethings. Rest doesn't necessarily mean sleep, but it does mean doing things that don't drain you.
11. Appreciate YOUR journey. Like for real. Are you okay that no ones knows you have a great marriage? (Read this blog, it's good stuff: http://michiforniagirl.com/i-cannot-in-good-conscience-participate-in-the-love-your-spouse-challenge/ )
Are you okay that no one may know how awesome of a parent you are? Are you okay that no one sees all of your food while on vacation?
Have you ever asked yourself what it is costing you to care so much if they do?
It's time to leave Fantasy Island.
In the real world, there are real chores, real demands, and real needs.
Remove yourself from everything that does not help you to rise up to meet the demands of your life. You need to be present with a sound mind, healthy heart, and right spirit.
As "brow"nistas, we need every bit of life and energy and spiritual guidance to handle it all. Because of our importance, we can not afford to be easily distracted, depressed, depleted, defeated, or distracted. And I was all of those things until I got my focus back.
My focus is God. My focus are all of the purpose, people and things He has given me to enjoy and to nurture and to assist and to build. Everything else is fleeting. Today, I feel restored. I feel like I can make it, and while you may not see all of it on Social Media, and while I may never grace the television screen, I promise you I am doing it, loving it, and it is 100% real and refreshingly authentic.
Until next time...