In case you haven’t noticed, I’m really into social media, I have a Facebook account, I tweet, share photos on Instagram and spend an exorbitant amount of time on Pinterest. I’m active and post a lot.
Two weeks ago, I was trying to get dressed, pack for a weekend out of town, and get to Lucas’s preschool by noon to pick him up early. Lola wasn’t interested in letting me do any of those things. You know how four-month olds can be. She wasn’t fussy and didn’t need anything in particular, she just seemed… bored.
After having fed her, changed her and played with her for a while, I laid her on my bed with her favorite gauzy blanket and a soft book that she enjoys chewing and as I stepped into the shower and looked over at her, I noticed that she was on her belly with an erect head watching the Today Show. I snapped a photo. I added a filter to the photo and instantly fell in love with it. I love the contrast of dark vs. light on our bed spread, I love that the TV is out of view but the remote is plainly in sight and I love how tiny she looks on our gigantic bed.
I posted this photo and status to Facebook:
At dinner the following evening, my husband, an inactive Facebook user, admitted to not having read any of the comments left on the photo, had this to say to me: “I didn’t like the careless nature of your recent Facebook post.” He wasn’t trying to start an argument and went on to explain that he knew what I was going through that morning and we’ve all been there, sometimes you gotta do what you gotta do, but doesn’t see the “need to be proud of our bad choices.” In other words, only share the good stuff.
First I was surprised that he’d even seen it and secondly I felt attacked by his comments and was quick to justify my decision both about why I posted the photo and my comment and my parenting skills. I wasn’t trying to be defiant or controversial and I certainly wasn’t looking for approval for my actions nor a discussion about what age children should be allowed to watch television, I know our daughter is too young. Plus, I’m only human and very flawed and I can share that and be okay with it.
After we went back and forth a bit and I was able to step down off my high horse, we had a very interesting discussion about social media and I’m still thinking about it two weeks later, in particular: why do we post what we post? Or more importantly, why do I post what I post?
I post because I’m crazy lucky, think my children are darling, I’m very proud of them, love the funny and insightful things Lucas says and believe others will too, feel like every now and then I take a half decent photo (like the one above) and I like to keep family and friends near and far up to date on my little family and our lives.
Sometimes, I’ll post something simply for that “me too” factor, which was definitely the case here because I knew other moms would identify. I love it when people empathize, sympathize, agree or disagree or teach me a different perspective.
I’m not special, just a stay-at-home mom doing the best I can, trying to balance two kids, find time for myself, my marriage and family and friends. I love to travel, read, exercise and dine out. Preferably with wine and interesting company. I believe my posts reflect all of the above.
I’ll never bitch about my kids or that summer is too long or count down the days until they go back to school or that they are driving me bat shit crazy, but you better believe they do. I don’t like downer posts or complaining, but I’m not above it. I’ll throw myself under the bus. I hate vaguebooking (an intentionally vague Facebook status update, that prompts friends to ask what’s going on, or is possibly a cry for help) and I will never push my politics or religion! Ever. I like posts to be light, funny and cute. I also don’t post things to get “likes” or “shares”, but they are certainly nice.
I post for me.
I might think twice now before posting something because of my husband’s comments, but I doubt it. Our conversation did make me think about the image I want to present to the world and I’m okay showing both the good and the bad. And although we might disagree with the nature of my status updates and/or photos I choose to share, we agree on one thing: we are proud of this life from any angle.
If you are active on social media, why do you post what you do? Do you think through the ramifications if any before posting something?