Diary of a Real Mama

One mom's endeavour to become an authentic woman of God

Becoming Real

on September 10, 2013

Ahhhh, September.  Blame it on a full 20 years of ‘back-to-school’, but September has always felt more like the beginning of a new year to me than January. A perfect time to reflect, kick some bad habits and establish some good ones, set some goals, try something new. Like blogging. Because if my time spent online recently is any indication, apparently that is what moms do. So here goes this new twin mama on a blogging journey. Thanks for joining me!

Over the past year or so, there have been several occasions where I felt the Lord challenging me to ‘be authentic’. To resist the temptation to hide behind a mask  and actually let people see the real me. Easier said than done, especially in this age of social media. It has occurred to me  how platforms like Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram facilitate our ability to portray a false, one-sided, ‘perfect’ life, and how this can negatively influence our expectations, our self-esteem. This really hit close to home in regards to my recent (twin) pregnancy. How many adorable ‘baby bump’ photos have you seen online, where the mom-to-be has her hair and make-up perfectly put together and is wearing the cutest maternity outfits, with status updates documenting all the joys of her week-by-week pregnancy progress? Perhaps it was in part this plethora of images and messages that set me up for such great disappointment in expecting my pregnancy to be a cute, enjoyable experience, with minimum impact on my day-to-day life. Well for those of you who know me at all, that’s certainly not how it all went down.  This got me thinking about whether I am partly to blame for perpetuating these unrealistic expectations. Let’s face it, I wasn’t about to post a selfie of how glamorous my hair was after 5 days of being too sick to even shower. Nor was I going to post a video clip of myself dry-heaving over the side of the bed. Sorry if that’s a bit graphic for you, but that was my reality.

So how exactly am I going to be ‘authentic’ ? That’s something I’m going to have to figure out as I go along. I’m not saying I’m never going to post another photo when I’m having a good hair day or when a new recipe or DIY project has turned out well. But the challenge I’m undertaking is to examine my motives, because more often than not, what motivates me is insecurity; a fear that if people really knew me, they wouldn’t like what they see.  This is something I have wrestled with for a long time, and I have a feeling I am not alone in this, that to some degree this resonates with every woman’s heart. We try so hard to put our best foot forward that we give the false impression that we’ve got it all together. We end up comparing ourselves to each other and wondering where exactly we went wrong and why we don’t measure up. Galatians 6:4 warns against playing the comparison game. When we compare ourselves to others we end up feeling discouraged, discontented. Or heaven forbid if we find ourselves coming out on top, then we’re giving a foothold to pride and arrogance. And I don’t want any of that!

What I want to do is give you a well-rounded picture of who I really am. To admit that I don’t have it all figured out. To admit when I’ve had one of my not-so-good days where I lost my temper or never got out of my pyjamas or had brownies for breakfast (and lunch, and supper). Because we all have days like that. The problem with what we see in social media is that we’re not comparing ourselves to something real. And it’s not helpful to Susie or Jane or Mary if the only thing they see of me are my successes, because heaven knows I have my share of failures too.

So will you join me on this journey of becoming ‘real’ women of God? Of leaving behind the temptation to present only the good, which ultimately leads us to doubt ourselves and secretly resent each other? Of sharing our triumphs and failures as we work out our faith with fear and trembling, and as He who began a good work in us faithfully carries it to completion? It could be scary at times and humbling, no doubt, but oh so very worth it.

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2 responses to “Becoming Real

  1. Very worth it endeavor!!! A life long process… 😀 Beautiful post and 100% absolutely with you on it all!!!! Real life is graphic at times… and that’s good. That’s life… and I think when it comes down to it… that’s beautiful… well maybe after we clean up the bathroom after the morning sickness episode 😉 wink wink!

  2. Shannon S says:

    Such a beautiful post Alison. I am so excited to follow and support you along your journey!
    xoxo

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