See the heavily filtered cover photo? I look so carefree and happy sitting on a pile of pumpkins at my sorority's fall sisterhood event. I'm in a very cute, very trendy outfit with my hair done and my makeup caked on to perfection. If you're not jealous of me, you should be.
Just kidding. I was MISERABLE. My heeled boots made it impossible for me to walk up the steep, gravel hill. It was actually 80 degrees outside, and I was sweating buckets. I mean, I loved spending time with my friends and my Big, but the pumpkin patch was over-picked, and it's just not fun pretending on Instagram that you're excited about the seasons changing like all those fashion bloggers when you actually suffer from Seasonal Affective Depressive Disorder (SADD), and the colder weather means inescapable emotional pain and suffering. And I was being the fake bitch that said "Omg, loving this colder weather! #pumpkinspice #spookyszn"
And then come the holidays. Thanksgiving, Hanukah, Christmas, Ramadan, etc. I "celebrate" Christmas, but it's really not much of a celebration of anything. My depression makes it five million times more difficult to put on a smile around my family members. I love them, and I love that Jesus was born to save me, but I'm just tired of people telling me that I need to be happy and merry and festive if I physically cannot will my body to produce more serotonin and Vitamin D. Being home for the holidays is stressful, and it makes me sad when I find myself comparing my inconsistent, sometimes fine, sometimes extremely turbulent home-life in reality to everyone's perfect family holiday pictures on Instagram.
It just sucks how staged our lives have become. We spend all this time branding ourselves on the Internet as if we're something to sell to the rest of the world instead of a living, breathing person. It's gone from keeping up with the Joneses to keeping up with the Kardashians to keeping up with photoshopped pictures of our best friends, who we know don't really look like that (but we still compare ourselves anyway). We go to extreme lengths to convince people we live the perfect life, from getting cosmetic surgery to improve our selfies to literally breaking into rich people's homes and posing with their cars and fancy furniture (I'm looking at that one 12-year-old from a couple months ago). We're not just doing this to make people like us. It goes way beyond that. We're doing this to avoid negative judgment and rejection.
What's the worst thing that's gonna happen when we're rejected by strangers? They don't know us. They don't our stories. Why do their split-second opinions matter in the grand scheme of things? We're on a tiny rock orbiting around the sun at just the right distance that we don't burn up or freeze, and I'm over here complaining that I didn't spend enough money on the filter for my theme. And the friends that reject us? If they're rejecting you based on you Instagram, they were never your friends in the first place, and that's the tea.
I'm making a pledge this holiday season to stop pretending that my life is better than yours because it's not. It's probably worse, but who's competing? I've decided right now that I'm not going to be happy-clappy and festive in all my Instagram pictures if I'm truly not feeling happy-clappy and festive. So, that being said, can we PLEASE go back to the olden days where people actually showed their true feelings in photographs?
My true feelings preserved in time forever...Pixabay
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