Happy Friday, sisters.
Some housekeeping to begin.
Recently, I’ve been under criticism for presenting here in this tent of ours a, for better word, fabricated life. One where maybe I don’t tell true things, and present a picture-perfect view of how things really are. It makes folks feel cheated.
I just need to talk about that because there are so many issues in that concern which are worth addressing.
Listen, I get it. Writing publicly will always contain an element of selective storytelling. Only one slice of the pie. A story heightened by the gift of retrospect, reflection and hindsight. Photographs do the same. The shiny moments. The selected split seconds in time we choose to share. The 2-D nature of their existence, omitting a mess to the left of the frame, a tantrum which preceded the clicking of the shutter, a filter which enhances the blueness of the sky.
Let it be known that for every glossy picture I share, there is a bucket full of Hard hovering to the left, not in frame. That for every lovely thing I write about, there are stories I don’t share because they involve other people who have the right to privacy. There exists in my life all the time, moments when I feel like the bottom will fall completely out of my partnership with Joel, moments when I am in the midst of a fall-out with a loved one, moments when I am struggling to accept the behaviour of people in my life. But those stories half belong to those people, and it’s one thing to be okay with sharing my insides publicly, and another thing to share the insides of others. I have no business in that, and so what I share has to be selected.
It’s important, I think, to ask ourselves who are we writing for? And while I write publicly because I enjoy the connection which follows, I primarily keep coming back to this blog again and again and again for my own benefit – to store the memories I want to cherish, to hold myself accountable for thoughts I’m having and patterns I’m wanting to change, and to anchor my life to all that is good in it. If this is inspiring for people, that’s not my business. If this offends people, also not my business.
I am the first person to get caught up in pretty pictures and a romanticized portrayal of life, motherhood in particular. There are some blogs I follow which I have to be careful about falling too deeply into because the way I compare my daily grind to their daily highlight reel is damaging. But it isn’t their fault for showcasing their happiness. They share for their reasons and that is their business. It is my fault when I believe in their stories as the epitome of perfection, of beauty, of bliss. It is my problem when I fall hook, line and sinker into a 2-D image and then feel less than when I try to measure up.
I believe in reckless truth-telling because it frees us from ourselves and connects us to others. Sometimes I write like that. Raw and emotive and about unpretty things. But I also recognize the benefit of documenting the beautiful things. I see now that it is a way of staying grateful. It’s a wonderful tool in stockpiling happiness – in noticing the small, lovely things and using them to fuel more good. And it’s okay for me, even if I’ve had a shitty week, to pluck out the happy moments and share them instead, because in doing so my own perspective changes, and isn’t that a grand thing?
So friends, it was a wonderful/long/easy/challenging/beautiful/hard/messy/pretty week, AS THEY ALL ARE.
And here are some of my favourite things.
Giving Good Praise To Girls – What Messages Stick. (If you’re interested, you can find the full article here.)
Home, by Phillip Phillips. I sing it to my kids and try not to cry.
Over ten years had passed since we’d seen each other, separated by different paths and great big oceans, but after reconnecting through this little tent a while back and her moving back from Austria, I got to hug my friend Bec in real life and watch our babies play together. It was surreal and totally normal and really just very beautiful. And yes, it’s THE Bec. The one who writes for us here sometimes. OUR SISTER BEC. Holy excitement.
Signing off with a Friday Photo Dump and wishing you a fabulous weekend. (theredtent on Instagram if you want to follow the feed.)