TweetFacebook statuses prompts, “what’s on your mind?” is like greeting someone with, “how are you?”
No one really listens or really wants to know how you’re doing.
Instead, like asking “how are you?” and getting the routine “good!” “well!” “I’m great!” Facebook statuses are a running wall of finding out who FINALLY! got! RAIN! and who had THE most AMAZING! lunch! EVERRR! complete with instagram softenings to dramatize the chicken pesto sandwich on ciabatta.
There’s nothing wrong with it. Even though I’m mostly interested in following activists and their work on Facebook, keeping abreast of friends’ and families’ cycles of new life and deaths, jobs and lovers, travels and insights is a nice sidebar to the whole Facebook experience. But, lately, I’ve limited my time on Facebook and social media in general. Not because I don’t have anything to say – quite the opposite – I’m just becoming increasingly curious if anyone genuinely wants to know what’s on my mind.
What’s on my mind? Do I really want to share? More importantly, do 672 “friends” really care to know what I think? I think about 1/6 of them do. The others probably just really, really like watching Isaiah grow in photos. Or are just too afraid to unfriend me.
The photo I’ve attached to this post is how I’m feeling about the world these days. I photographed it several months ago. I entitled it, “Inside Every Home.”
I photographed it against the common background of a residential street, with an ordinary window pane as the frame, with that shiny golden latch next to the glass to show the view we all take from the inside of our houses. We can see the tidy and seemingly perfect houses, handsomely dotted with green lawns and nice car parked out front. We can see this, but we must also see the brokenness inside each home. Inside our homes, inside all of our hearts. The sophisticated, delicate, fragile glass goblets we hold together, even when it’s clearly in shards. The last drops of fine red wine still stain the bottom and rims, like dried blood in an old war. Evidence that we once drank from this goblet, evidence that we once were alive, useful, gay. But today, for now, we heed to a broken or dying spirit inside.
Perhaps its madness, or depression. Maybe it’s a partner who left us, a spouse who cheated on us, a child who lied to us, a boss who dismissed our work, a careless utterance that destroyed a trust, a dream that refuses to be born into a reality, a job that eludes us, a house that falls apart, a tragedy that cannot be lifted, a marriage that cannot be fixed, spiritual soot that cannot be cleansed.
Something inside us all is broken.
But we don’t write about those things. We don’t write about the broken world because we don’t want the others who are looking out their window to see that we have a broken goblet, too.
So we write about the weather, cancelled television shows, recipes for lemon cupcakes, and partial lies about who we truly are. When we fail to offer even a glimpse of our truest selves to our “friends,” to our so-called communities, we become soft liars of our very own existence.
I am and never will be a liar to my own life.
This is who I am today. Broken, struggling. Moody. Still loving. I cooked cauliflower soup and danced with Isaiah at the pool. We shared a small tupperware sweet-treat bowl blend of pretzels, m&ms, and marshmallows. I wore a sundress without a bra and felt daring. I am eager to get to the library to pick up a new book, “Crazy Brave” which I’ve been dying to read for several weeks. Just a few moments ago, I laid my head on Nick’s chest and asked him if he wanted to play cards. He replied, “I don’t especially want to, but I will so I can be with you.”
But I carry that broken goblet inside me today. I show it to you so you know I did all that I just wrote, but so you also know that I am more than that. My life is more complex than that. My home is filled with much more than that.
How are you today?