Earlier this week a friend of mine posted a picture from a trip to a local museum with her baby on Facebook. The baby was clearly not a fan of the outing and my friend described it as a “trip to the museum with an angry baby”. She went on to comment that she looked a bit stressed in one of the photos. She added (tongue-in-cheek) that she hoped it “wasn’t too much” for Facebook.
The honesty of this really resonates with me. This idea that for all the cherub-like sleeping baby moments we see posted online, there are also screaming-their-tiny-heads off moments. Of course we all know this, it’s just that we don’t always put it out there.
Obviously, I’m not just talking about photos of kids, here. We filter everything. Delete every outtake. It’s so easy, why wouldn’t we? The picture at the top of this post is the most unpolished photo I could find of myself in the 300+ photos on my phone. I’d deleted all the things I would truly not want anyone to see (like the 6 takes of the photo below that featured a double-chin and the unfiltered version of it in which I I look really, really red).
And then there are the things that we would never think to photograph and share at all. We don’t take pictures of that day we were annoyed at our spouse for no particular reason and were silent and scowl-y all afternoon. We don’t include a status update about that time we were so tired we sat on the edge of our bed and cried about everything and nothing.
Even though I blog a lot about my life, I assure you there is plenty that never makes it on to this page, and I truly believe (for me) it is right to keep some things private. But I do wonder if occasionally I should just go ahead and put that unfiltered, red-faced picture up or post about the dinner that didn’t turn out so deliciously or the days I feel totally creatively unproductive.
At what point is it detrimental not to acknowledge that a lot of life happens in the outtakes?