NEVER JUDGE A BOOK BY ITS COVER
NO, NOT EVEN THIS ONE…
As most of you know, I have a love/hate relationship with social networking. As an introvert, I do enjoy the perks of technology, such as texting instead of having to look for an excuse to politely get off the phone with a long winded friend.
I love keeping in touch with real world friends, and with social networking only friends.
But, especially this year, with the political scene so insane, I’ve been leaning more towards dislike of social networking.
I really feel that social networking has turned us into different people.
Just the other day, I commented on Twitter about a parenting app that I (hope) I will never need.
Just my short tweet in the comments section, caused a complete stranger to go off on me, and call me an Anti-Vaxer. (I’m not), I have NO idea how they got that from my tweet, and neither did others who saw this exchange.
I think…no, I KNOW, many of us type things that we would never say otherwise.
On the interwebs, we see our “friends” getting promotions, getting nice things for their birthdays, eating delicious food…having a great day, every day except for the “I’ve got the flu” “My kid got bullied in school” type of posts.
We forget however, that we are not getting the entire story.
A real world friend hurt my feelings on-line ages ago, and I really need to let it go, but it still bugs me.
We were instant messaging, talking about children and his grand kids, and just life in general.
Towards the end, he said he needed to finish up so he could go to bed because, “That’s what we poor working people do.”
It really hurt my feelings and kind of made me mad.
I work hard, and half of my work is unpaid. There isn’t any money in rescuing animals.
And even with my services for Indie Authors, most of my work is free or less than half the cost of what others charge.
(And please don’t think I’m tooting my own horn, I’m just stating that I DO work hard.)
Now, don’t get me wrong, I’m not saying people are being fake on social networks (although we know some are), but really we ALL are just giving brief clips of our lives.
Yes, admittedly, I kind of do live the life of Riley, but I PROMISE you, you would NEVER want the journey I took to get here.
I know what it’s like to be poor.
I know what it’s like to go hungry.
I know what it’s like to be homeless and rely on the kindness of friends.
I made some bad choices in my 20’s. No crime, no hard drugs, but plenty of parties!
I know what it’s like to go without dental care, and to be in agony for days. The ER nurse laughed at me on the phone and hung-up.
Finally, a neighbor in my apartment building told me about a free dental clinic.
I know disappointment, sadness, loss, heartbreak, regret…
but I also know it’s my positive attitude that helps me through everything.
That, and sense of humor.
You see me post great trips, exciting news, a recent success.
What you don’t see very often is my struggle with Graves Disease.
I post about it sometimes. I could post about it every day, truth be told.
But for me, social networking is kind of like the local small bar you go to for quick drink. You know, the quiet bar where maybe the jukebox is playing softly in the background and whatever sport of the season is on the tv. Where you go to unwind from the hectic day.
I don’t want my socializing on the inter-webs to be a chapter in the bitch and moan society book.
You could say it’s my fault for not sharing this more-and that is true-but it’s not what I want to share all of the time, because most days I do my best to not focus on my disease and how I feel.
Remember, everyone is free to use their FB, Twitter, Instagram, etc. however they choose.
Most of us prefer to keep it happy for the most part.
And that’s not being dishonest.
It’s wisely choosing what you want to share and what you don’t.
But, my point is…
don’t just assume everything is sunshine and roses for someone just because that’s all they post.
I share with you the successes of the horse and cat rescues, but I don’t share the failures.
Because you already know bad things happen to animals.
And, in the rescue business, focusing on the positive is a MUST or you wouldn’t be able to do it for very long.
I share with you the joys and frustrations of parenting, but I haven’t shared the huge learning curve, or the insane paperwork, or the terror of going before a judge in another country proving you can provide for the children.
I don’t share with you how invasive it is to have state side social workers examine your home, lifestyle, health, religion (or lack of), habits, hobbies, marital relationship, personality, mental health, etc. etc. just to get approved to adopt.
I don’t tell you these things, because simply…I don’t want to.
Life is hard, and I try to put my problems aside and try to give people a laugh on my social networks.
Just remember that we all have struggles you will never know about.
And respect that.
Remember that some like to share more of their journey than others.
And that’s okay.
I wish everyone a great day, and a Happy New Year!