Like many people, I’m coming off a holiday high. I had a great time with our family celebrating what might be our last Thanksgiving in the house I (mostly) grew up in. My parents have put their house on the market and will be hopefully moving closer to me soon – yay!
I’m not big on Thanksgiving food so the appeal is not really the food so much as the people and the downtime, and as my sister would say, the taaalking. More than any other time, my parents house is where I’m able to relax, be myself, and leave my phone in my room. I’m pretty terrible at this most of the time, but I’m working on it. I’m following my own advice to my high school girls and reducing the number of times I check social media and I deleted all social media except Instagram from my phone – baby steps, people.
10 years ago, if you had told me my life would be what it is today I would have laughed. If you had told me my goals and aspirations I would have politely smiled, but silently judged. Now, I wouldn’t have it any other way. This is mostly due to the people in my life continually speaking truth and guiding me when I am so lost I don’t even know I’m lost.
I think this is one of the reasons social media can be so alluring and dangerous. We’ve all heard it before, but it still holds true. It’s easy to post the great pictures or see someone else’s life and want what they have, but we don’t know what’s going on behind the scenes – sometimes even in our own lives. In the last year my life has changed so much in ways I would have never imagined. I’ve moved, changed jobs, made friends, lost friends, mourned the loss of life and celebrated new births. Some are great changes and some have been really, really hard. Either way, 18 months ago I could not have predicted any of the changes.
For me, this has been one of the greatest and most unexpected benefits of living in community. I am surrounded by people who know me – good, bad, and ugly, and who want the best for me. These people give correct me, listen, provide connections, and create opportunities I wouldn’t have on my own. We celebrate successes and grieve losses. We sacrifice for each other and sometimes literally, carry each others’ burdens. side note: Have I said thank you to the many people who’ve moved me many times? If not, THANK YOU! They make me a better me and I would like to think, a more true and fuller me.
No, my life isn’t just what you see on Instagram. It’s a lot messier. It’s a lot more complicated and nuanced. But it’s better – even with the ugly. My life doesn’t come with an editing filter and although there are times I wish it did, I am better for it. I am better without the filter and so is my life. Sometimes, I just have to remind myself.