by Tamara Flaherty
I received a request on Facebook this week asking me to post a picture of my face without makeup to support breast cancer awareness.
Now I have to admit, my immediate thought was that it would make more sense to post pictures of breasts to increase awareness, but then again, I’m not running the campaign.
Not to mention that’s highly inappropriate!!
But then again, so is posting a picture of my naked face!!
That got me thinking about all the ways that both men and women “conceal” our true selves, and the lengths we go to in an effort to hide our flaws from those around us, and even from ourselves.
The “makeup” we wear is usually the full-coverage, flawless finish kind.
It “covers” our burdens, faults, failures, regrets, loneliness, and pain.
This makeup is very expensive!!
The rates of substance abuse, divorce, depression, and suicide in America are through the roof!
We are disconnected in the worst way, from the things that truly matter. Things like faith, family, and friendship.
Ironically, the rate at which we share information about ourselves and “connect” with others is skyrocketing.
With the advent of social media and easy access to platforms like blogs, Facebook, Instagram and the like, we know more about the people around us then ever before.
But do we really?
The vast array of tools at our disposal allow us to portray ourselves in almost any way we wish.
There is this great app called Facetune that allows me to gently erase the wrinkles on my neck, smooth out the imperfections in my face, and even make myself thinner if I wish.
I have been tempted to use that thinning feature, but eventually I would run into some of you in person, and give away the fact that I’m not really a model in real life.
Sometimes I look at what other people write in their blogs, or post on social media and it makes me think that my life totally sucks!
The truth is that even though their pictures and stories are examples of happy, beautiful things in their lives, that isn’t true about their whole life, no matter who they are.
We share with others only the things that make us look, act, or feel the way we think people expect us to look, act, or feel.
That creates a disconnect that prevents us from truly knowing, understanding, and supporting one another. It creates loneliness, isolation, and dissatisfaction with our lives.
Now I’m not suggesting that you post a video of the fight you had with your spouse last night, or photos of the disgusting mess that’s under your refrigerator and couch cushions (I KNOW it’s there!) , but I do think that if we really want authentic relationships with each other that we need to be more real, more transparent, and less “Photoshopped” in our lives.
I believe that we go through difficult things so that we can reach out and help others and make the journey easier for those who come after us.
We can’t do that if we conceal our true selves or if they do.
I have committed to making my blog as real and transparent as I can without “over-sharing”, or “dumping” all my emotions and feelings onto the page.
Unfortunately I cannot do the same with my face, even if the cause is as noble and valuable as Breast Cancer Awareness!!
Read through the Bible in a year!
On Happiness, Adventure and Contentment
Exploring the world through caring thoughts, the freedoms of guilt free emotions, and looking at the world through the eyes of someone elses perspective seeking to enhance and set free your soul by opening your heart and mind
by Justin Shoemaker