Friday, May 16, 2008

Hidden Danger...

Did you know it's dangerous to read stranger's blogs? Not dangerous as in "watch out, you might hurt yourself" or "someone crazy is going to hunt you down and.."

O.k. maybe dangerous isn't even the word i'm looking for.

What I'm trying to get at is that reading people's blogs that you don't even know (and even people you do know) gives you a false sense of reality. You read what they write, see the pictures they post and you think you know them. You think that perfect little world that you are witnessing really exists. Those happy smiling faces staring out from the computer screen say it all.

And then you start to ask yourself... why am I not like that? Should I be more like that? What am I doing wrong? You find yourself making comparisons... and when you do this, you cannot win.

Because no one really tells it how it is. Sure they might tell you about the mess the kids made and they might talk about sleepless nights and unfolded laundry, but the tales are usually told with just a hint of humor. And there are always the pictures, and the pictures "never" lie.

Nobody puts bad pictures on their blogs (o.k. the pictures may be bad -as in poor quality - but you get what i'm saying). Because a picture really is worth a thousand words. The hundred or so words they used to describe their "terrible" day is always followed up with, or sandwiched between pictures of smiling children, laughing parents, and always in the background are snippets of clean houses.

Yes, I notice these things... so do you. I just do it consciously and you probably do it subconsciously. It's funny because growing up my Mom took lots of pictures. And I look at them and smile knowingly. Not because of what you can see, but because of what you can't see. You can't see that just out of the frame is a pile of junk that just got pushed a little higher so it wouldn't be in the picture. You look at us in the picture with our cute smiling faces and our flushed cheeks and you presume we just took a break from our play to pose for the camera. What you don't know is the fact that we just spent the last 5 minutes making a small space near the curtains or wall presentable enough for the picture. As a result, most of the pictures we have (at least inside) are posed. We don't have any of those spontaneous "oh that's so cute, I had better get out the camera" moments (at least not inside anyway).

You see, even at a young age, I was being taught that the way I lived wasn't acceptable to others. So I pushed the piles out of the way and I posed for the camera. And that's how it still is. Although the piles aren't there in a literal sense, I still have to push them out of the way and make my self presentable to others. I feel like a fraud...

1 comment:

Donna said...

Jamie,
We have soooooooooo many pictures from childhood with a nice clean backdrop where we are all smiling and posing! For the camera. So we don't "ruin" the picture. "Proof" that things were kept "nice" and were "happy-happy"in the alternate reality we lived in (within the camera lens frame).

Pictures. Hmpfh.