I spend an unreasonable amount of time on my laptop with 2 businesses and one part-time job. I also spend a lot of this time on Facebook. I have to advertise, post, create events etc, it’s about 10% of what I do. I’ll often find myself scrolling through Facebook, as most of us do, checking the news feed I checked only an hour before, and not really looking for anything.
You see another mother doing sensory play at home, again with her baby younger than yours and feel guilty as you sit watching the same episode of the Twirlywoos for the 14th time this week. Another baby being pushed in a swing, taken to National Trust locations. One mummy seems to be able to juggle 3 children, a business, the school run, 7 after school activities, host a coffee morning and even have time to bake the cakes too.
Someone you went to school with is travelling the world, becoming cultured and experiencing all the things you never wanted to, but you still feel jealous that its not you out there. Career women post photos of them out with work colleagues at fancy cocktail bars in dresses worth more than your TV. Another Facebook friend shows snaps of ‘All the girls’ for their weekly lunch date at that restaurant you really want to visit, but isn’t child friendly and even if you did go with your husband you wouldn’t be able to order more than a salad and tap water as you calculate the cost of the meal to tubs of formula and boxes of nappies.
I envy all of these people. I wish I had the career woman lifestyle, with my gorgeous child in tow, with my husband who took us to fancy restaurants and the regular holiday in paradise, with a business that didn’t require any effort but still afforded me success and I had all the time to take our baby to National Trust parks and the energy to do sensory play each afternoon.
But the truth is thats unrealistic. Darcy is happy to watch Twirlywoos, Bing or the Teletubbies while I catch up on some work. I don’t have all the time to do everything with her and to be the world’s craftiest, most entertaining mum but I do make her laugh and play with her for hours and if I find the time to do some sensory fun, then well done me! Holidays will have to wait, but we’ll get there in time. Daddy and I will reserve ourselves for the rare Date Night to relive our misspent youth at fancy Cocktail bars.
But more to the point. What you see is not necessarily what you get. While I envy these people, to my surprise, a lot of people have told me they are jealous of my life.
Now I won’t pretend that my existence isn’t full of happiness, but its certainly not perfect. Just remember, you can edit photos, type what you like and paint your life through rose tinted glasses on social media. No one knows what goes on behind closed doors. So before you start doubting yourself and feeling depressed with what you have… just remember. It’s not what it looks like.