Comparisons are a thief of joy. No one knows what is going on in the perfectly designed homes we see on Instagram or what the husband who tags his wife in various romantic articles on Facebook is really like. While I would love to spend my days sipping coffee while doing Bible Study and taking photos of me clipping flowers in my sink (you know what photos I’m talking about), that isn’t life. That isn’t real.
A few weeks ago, while scrolling through Instagram, I saw a photo of a woman who took a photo of herself in front of a mirror wearing next to nothing. One of the comments was “I wish I could be you, even if it was just for a day.” The thing is, the person who made that comment, is a WONDERFUL mother and person. I thought to myself “Why would she want to give up her own life to be someone who looks good in booty shorts?” Is that who we are now? We are mothers and wives and women who would give up everything we have just to look like someone else?
We are always trying to be something else. A better baker. A better birthday party giver. A better meal planner. A more adventurous mother. A better house cleaner. It’s never ending. We have all these unattainable goals for our lives and when we fall short, we turn on ourselves. We aren’t good enough or smart enough or pretty enough. These are the lies we constantly tell ourselves.
What’s worse is we do it to our family. We compare kids and milestones. We compare behavior, victories and accomplishments. We put those same unattainable goals on our families as we do on ourselves. For no reason other than what we see happening on the surface. A photo we see that makes us angry that we have to go to work and not get to stay at home. A status that makes us feel inferior and less-than. A comment that seems to be a dig at who we are.
I too am guilty of all of this. I felt the sting when I saw someone else on a wonderful vacation and I was at work or felt that little bit of jealousy when someone posted about their wonderful job. I’ve been there. Oftentimes I find myself back there.
The thing is, you are good enough. You are more than enough. The life you have is the life you were made for. No one can do your life like you can. You children don’t need a mother who can make the best crafts or put them in the best clothes money can buy. They need YOU. Your husband does not need you to be in a face full of makeup every single day or skinny or for you to make the best home-cooked meal. He needs YOU. You wouldn’t be a better person if you looked better in leggings, learned how to make 100% organic whatever, lived the life that you pin on Pinterest. That isn’t what counts.
There are always going to be people who seem, from appearances, to have it easier than you do. That is never going to change. What needs to change is the feeling that we somehow need to be in competition or that which makes us feel unfulfilled with our own lives.
Your house might be dirtier than you would like for it to be. Your dinner might be fish sticks and mac-and-cheese. Laundry is probably way behind. Friends are few and far between. That’s all ok. This is you and there isn’t anything better.