Every morning I wake up at 6am.
Over the last year or so I have developed a habit. Perhaps an unhealthy one. I immediately grab my phone that has been charging on the floor by my bed. I check all my messages and emails. Before I have even gotten out of bed or spoken to another human, I escape to Facebook.
I scroll through the smiling faces, the bubbly luncheons and the delightful dinners. Bright colorful pictures pop up onto my screen displaying cute cupcakes and wonderfully creative kids art and craft activities. People having a fabulous time in their fabulous lives with their fabulous friends.
Recently I have been going through some shit and I have been digging deep amongst the laundry and the stinking nappies, searching the road to work and the road back home. Rummaging around for my soul, the one that is scattered amongst it all.
As I scroll that glowing touch screen I ponder. Is Facebook good for your mental health? Does your news feed nourish only insecurities and anxiety?
I see mums making an admirable effort to bake stunning animal cupcakes or delicious organic chocolate chip cookies with their terrific toddlers. Lately I would be lucky to make a piece of toast with my three year old.
I see friends having a wonderful time exploring the world or partying into the wee small hours.
People Fine dinning while sipping on bubbly jet streams.
Exploring the playground and dining at the local food hall is about as far as we venture these days.
Some time ago I posted a picture on my personal Facebook. If I dare use that dreaded word it was a “selfie” A photograph capturing a precious moment my little baby joey and I.
I am smiling I look happy. I guess at that moment I was. However behind the scene of that picture was an exhausted mind. A mind racked with anxiety and worry.
A mind continually being interrupted by intrusive and sometimes morbid thoughts. People made remarks about that particular photograph. Comments on how well I was looking and assuming that everything must be great.
Most of you know that we should take Facebook with a pinch of salt and a dose of reality.
What about the vulnerable among us. Those with minds trapped in an unhealthy way of thinking. Those who compare themselves to what they see on Facebook, to their friends in mothers group or at work.
I have been told that the rate of depression and anxiety is on the rise. While there are many contributing factors to this. It does make you think whether technology plays a part. The way we live our lives allowing computers to take over our perfectly evolved biological brains. Exposing us to even more people to compare ourselves to.
My advice to you is just remember never judge a persons life by their Facebook cover page. Behind those beaming smiles and those cutsie pie cupcakes there could possibly be another tale to tell. A not so happy fairy tale. Depression and mental illness cannot be seen in the face.
As my brain fog begins to clear. I am slowly remembering how to nurture the news feed of my one and only real life. I now leave my phone charging in the kitchen overnight. I try to remain in the real world.
An unedited world where there are ups and downs, highs and lows. A world with sunshine and rain, a world with touch and smell. I leave my phone inside while I play outside with my two magical little elves in this beautiful raw and real fairytale.