Recently I posted a picture from my Galapagos Retreat on my Facebook page. Under it I had written, “Everyone should try and go to the Galapagos once in their life.” Under that, someone had commented, “Look at your life, Jen. Must be nice. How many people do you think can realistically travel to the Galapagos, Jen?”
First off, I had to resist writing back to the sarcastic poster with, "Should I not post about this magical place and urge people to visit because of all the people that may never be able to go there?" Or, "Everyone on my retreat saved up for a long time to come." I posted nothing in retort. But the thing about this particular comment that got me was the idea that this person was making up a story about how awesome my life is.
Don’t get me wrong. My life is awesome. Except when it’s not. Except when I am dealing with depression or anxiety or am at my sister’s and her son, who has Prader-Willi Syndrome is trying to pull all of his hair out. Or, when I can't hear due to my hearing loss and I feel totally lost and helpless.
I’m guilty of it too, sometimes. I’ll look on another writer’s Facebook and think, Oh, they're publishing their third book and I have published … zero. Or, Wow, I wish I had that kitchen. Look how big it is! That fridge! Or, They seem so happy all the time.
It’s easy to look on Instagram at the pictures of people in crazy arm balances and inversions and feel like you suck at yoga, and that their life must be perfect. (Side note: being able to do crazy arm balances and inversions does not maketh a perfect life.)
Comparing ourselves is dangerous business. Especially when we do it online or with the media. Almost everything we see on the Internet is a careful construct.