Oysters Or Tilapia Dinners

Blogs are the worst, right? ...says the blogger. Well, "blogger." But hear me out.

I'm just sitting here minding my own business on the internet by skulking around anonymously. Lurking, I believe, is the historically favored term. (Hey lurkers! I know there's a few of you. Literally a few. Two.) 

Anyway, I'm lurking like a champ when, behold, something catches my eye! It's some young, attractive mommy blogger who spends more on clothes in 1 year than I have in the last 5 - 10 years. (WHERE DO THEY GET THE MONEY?) You know her, she's all over the place.

Her hair has the prefect beach wave. Her makeup is expertly applied. There are no under-eye sleep-deprivation circles. Her outfit is so casual yet cool. "I love wearing a low heel for a cute stroll with my kids! Just 3 inches of height is all I need today!" She looks good in hats. Her purse is devoid of the coffee splatters decorating mine--the ones that say, "Wow, you were running with coffee to catch the door to the elevator because you were late, weren't you?"

(Was I? WAS I LATE? Update coming soon. Hint: YOU GET NO HINTS.)

And her children. Aren't they adorable? They are, they really are. Most amazingly, they have no stains on their shirts, no banana goo on their faces, and no tear-streaked cheeks evidencing the latest meltdown over the fact that you didn't let them flush the toilet for you. FLUSHING. They even know how to pose, somehow, these kids. They just behave, because they know what a joy they are to their mom. I know they are, because she said so.

Not only is she, this mommy-blogger, perfectly coiffed with perfectly stain-free children and a coffee stain-free purse. She also is in stupidly great shape. "Just trying to love my body; amazed at what it has done!" says the prepregnancy-skinny-jean-wearing-at 3-weeks-postpartum lady. I guess her ol' bod didn't bounce back at her ripe old age of 27 like it would have when she was young.

Her home is, quite simply, the most perfect light and airy dream cocoon you could imagine, an excellent backdrop for her multitude of pictures. 

And the pictures. She's an Insta-princess. And Insta-star! She doesn't look directly at the camera. Oh no. She holds her hair (they are always holding their hair. ALWAYS) and looks off to the side, or down at the ground, or off to the horizon, or at her charming off-camera companion. Anywhere but the camera. Except for mirror selfies. Then, obvs, you can't pretend you didn't know the camera was there.

And she's laughing! She's so happy! Her children and home and herself are all so beautiful that she just laughs while looking perfectly made up and in such fabulous shape!
So I'm just scrolling around, getting sucked into her perfect world with her perfect kids and suddenly feeling like I need to somehow make my life, my world, my surroundings, match hers in some way. Clearly she's got it figured out. She's working from home, happy, relaxed, enjoying her children. I'm working from work, tired, and enjoy my children when the baby isn't screaming because her internal clock KNOWS IT'S TIME TO EAT THIS MINUTE and the toddler isn't having an explosive physical outburst because it's time to leave a birthday party. 

Maybe I need to buy an It-Bag. Or some investment shades. Or a better primer. I need to grow my hair out so I can get that perfect beachy wave. And maybe a statement mirror would not only enhance my living space but it would provide a perfect place to practice my mirror selfies to share with you. Do I need an OOTD? I'm pretty sure that's Outfit Of The Day, but it could be Oysters Or Tilapia Dinner. I rarely see seafood in the pictures, unless it was something she enjoyed over a lovely, boozy alfresco lunch with her girls. So it's probably the outfit thing.
Picture does not do justice.

Perhaps if I did those things, my best selfie wouldn't be the one I took that time to show my husband the awesome heat rash on my chest from my lunchtime workout in my little office.

Perhaps I wouldn't be the woman who accidentally caught her muffin top in her side-zipper pants when zipping them up.  (Yes. That happened. It hurt. #babyweight)

Perhaps my children would never cause me to lose my cool. Nothing would!

My house would never be messy, my husband and I would have weekly date nights, wine would be calorie-free and my children would only ever smile and wear clean clothes and not have messy hair! And I would never be tired!!!

Okay, oysters are delicious, so that would work for me. And a statement mirror would enhance my living space. But the rest, though at first being inspirational, perhaps aspirational, too quickly turns into feelings of discontentment with my own life. Myself. My abilities as a mother, wife, and human being citizen of Planet Earth.

Why don't I photograph that well? My house looks like crap compared to that. My clothes are so boring and old. Am I not happy enough? I should be happy more. Why am I not happy more? What magic makeup hides those eye bags? My kids n.e.v.e.r. pose for pictures like I ask them to. How do they afford those clothes for their kids? Should we make more money? Why don't we have more money?

My kids are cuter though.

I mean, come on. Some things are just no contest.

Thankfully, too much of this toxic line of thinking, much like too much booze, has a similar effect. I literally get a headache and that's enough to break the trance I'm in. I step back and see how totally absurd I'm being. Then I close the tab to that blog (whichever blog this may happen to be) and reenter my life. 

MY life. It may not be glossy, but it's mine and I love it. We don't spend much on clothes or entertainment, but we're giving some away, paying bills, eating well, and saving for expenses as best we can. I don't have a perfect "light and airy" house with high ceilings, but the house we have will be ours in 28 short years! (Mortgage life, son.) We have two beautiful, happy (usually), healthy girls who we wanted and who we adore. And Lizzie the Cat might poop in a box, but she purrs and keeps my feet warm at night. 

As the old saying goes, we have everything we need, and much of what we want.

So maybe it's not blogs that are the worst. Maybe it's my own pathetic reaction to those bright and beautiful young women who are making it all look so much easier than it is for me. And I'm sure it's not that easy for them.

If you suffer from these kinds of ridiculous reactions to any type of "lifestyle blogger," and especially a mommy blogger, I urge you to imagine them not smiling, but clenching their jaw as they pick up their 30 pound model-good-looks child, who is kicking and screaming, and carrying them like a sack of angry cats to the car, then wrestling the beautiful demon into the car seat as the child does the advanced toddler maneuver known as the Flailing Back Arch with Round-House Kick to Mom's Face.

It helps.

Oysters Or Tilapia Dinners and completely misleading post titles, to you and yours,


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