Social media overwhelms me.
Maybe it is just because of the weird mix that is my personality…social introvert with the spiritual gift of evangelism who has a tendency to pursue justice at all costs but doesn’t want to hurt the feelings of even my worst enemies.
Goodness. I think they have mental health treatment programs for people with such mixed up psyches as mine. For those of you who have never been able to peg just what is so strange about me…now you know why you couldn’t quite figure me out.
So basically…with my personality social media means I feel overwhelmed that so many people want to be my friend and care about my life at the same time feeling the burden of each person’s eternal destiny.
Because of my personality my heart aches at the injustice I see happening in the lives of all of my ‘friends and followers’ and I want them to know I am by their side fighting for them. While at the same time, I find myself being somewhat of a social media ‘stalker’. I don’t “like” or comment on things because I am so afraid that I will hurt someone’s feelings by “not liking and commenting” on things…
I almost feel like I should commit myself to a facility after typing all of that out, knowing it is all 100% true.
This week I posted some pictures from my kids first day of school on my InstaGram account. I send pictures from my IG account to my Facebook page because I have many friends and family that are “Facebookers” and I love occasionally hopping on Facebook to see pictures of their sweet families.
Anyone who has been a “Facebooker” knows that you can hop on your page with the good intentions of just browsing through it for a minute or two to catch up on the lives of the loved ones in your life…and two hours later you catch yourself reading an article posted by a friend of a friend of a friend that is about a study on the benefits of owning a cat…did I mention that I am allergic to cats and have a justified hate for them.
Then you look up and dinner is still not planned. The kids are still on the video game that you told them to get off of two hours earlier and your husband will be home in 10 minutes.
Because several years ago I found myself somewhat ‘addicted’ to Facebook, I developed a love/hate relationship with social media. I have inherited an addictive personality and so I can easily become obsessed with almost anything I enjoy. Social media, exercise, and even my church work can easily turn into something that can control me.
I sat down this morning at my local coffee shop at 6 am on a Saturday morning (another unexplainable thing that makes me a weirdo) to feed my introvert soul. Because if you ever want to have a coffee shop to yourself…try going at 5:30 or 6 on a Saturday morning…Introverts out there…you will thank me….but I am not telling you where I go…that would ruin it for me.
I decided to hop onto Facebook on my laptop. Somewhere along the way I decided that having Facebook on my phone was like a recovering alcoholic carrying a bottle with them everywhere they go, so I deleted it from my phone a long time ago.
So, because I had time and access on my laptop I decided to ‘catch up’ on my Facebook world friends.
As I looked at the names of the couple of hundred people who had liked and commented on a picture I posted on IG and sent over to Facebook land…I found myself in a dilemma about how to respond honestly to people without sounding prideful.
Here’s what I posted…
First day of school at 5:30 am this is where I find myself. Rushed home last night from a meeting at church to tuck my “babies” in before their first day of school. One of these not so babies (who hasn’t believed in Santa, tooth fairy or other fun make-believe in years)…after a beautiful prayer and pep talk about being a friend to the friendless and a light for Jesus at school said, “you remember when we were little and the backpack fairy used to come on the first day of school and put a surprise in our backpacks…I wonder if she will come tonight. My response, “you are too big for all that!” I truly meant it until they were sound asleep and I started thinking about how time flies. So what were my last words to Joe as a lay my head on my pillow, I’ve got to make a Wal-Mart run in the morning before everyone wakes up because having preteens and a toddler in the same house is a constant reminder that all too soon they won’t ask for such things of their momma…looks like the BackPack fairy has come back to life and likely will be putting treats in suitcases someday when she sends them off to college….now to wipe the tears and go find some “silly childish surprise” for my big “babies” for some silly fairy to get all the credit.
And here is how people responded…
“You’re an awesome mom”
“You’re the best”
“You’re the coolest momma”
As I read through the 30 plus comments like that, I kept thinking…
If these people only knew…
If all the people who liked my pictures or commented on this picture knew the inner struggle I have had with my mothering abilities…
If these people knew how ‘unnatural’ mothering has been to me for most of my 13 years of being called a momma.
If these people knew how social media had added to those struggles.
I am working on writing all of that out in the raw…not sure I will be brave enough to share it to the “world” through social media … introvert struggles…
But I didn’t feel like I could type out a reply on social media without a deeper explanation because it has taken me years to accept compliments on my motherhood.
- To believe that the good things that others said about me was actually true
- To simply say “Thank you! Why yes I am an AWESOME and GREAT momma”
My motherhood is a living example of the truth of 2 Corinthians 12:9-10
But He said to me, “My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.” Therefore I will boast all the more gladly about my weaknesses, so that Christ’s power may rest on me. 10 That is why, for Christ’s sake, I delight in weaknesses, in insults, in hardships, in persecutions, in difficulties. For when I am weak, then I am strong.
Indeed in my weakness, Christ has made me strong so that only He can get the glory.
Because of the power living inside of me through the Holy Spirit, I can now let these words roll off my tongue without battling back thoughts of guilt and shame accusing me of being a liar because I get motherhood wrong almost as much as I get it right.
So to all those who gave me compliments I can say and I now believe it…
“Thank you. You are right. I am a good momma. In fact, at times, I am an awesome momma.”
But, what I have come to know more and more as my kids have grown and have a voice of their own in our home…it really doesn’t matter too much to me what my social media friends think about my motherhood. You guys only see the ‘dos’ of my motherhood. The parties I throw or the costumes I make or the places I take my kids.
But there are only five opinions that are the true judges of my motherhood: three kiddos, one man here on earth, and one Heavenly father whose comments and “likes” matter the most to me. The opinions of these five matter most to me because they are the ones who see the true “who I am” behind the “what I do.”
I could get an A+ in the “what I do” in motherhood but still fail in the “who I am” as I mother.
And praise Jesus…His grace defines who I am and the mercies of my Heavenly Father are new every morning.
If I kept a tally…I probably fail at being and doing each day almost as much as I get it right.
So this morning, as I am getting ready to leave this coffee shop that has gotten way too crowded for my introvert enjoyment….I declare by the mercies of the Father and the grace of my sweet, sweet Jesus….
“Why yes indeed I am a great momma.”
Now…to go put this to the test in the presence of the 5 who get to be my judges.