“You should never assume. You know what happens when you assume. You make an ass out of you and me because that’s how it’s spelled.” ― Ellen DeGeneres
I want you to look at the photo below:
Yes, this is my family — hello! Pretend you came across this on social media. As you start to look at it, you naturally start assuming things…I’m assuming. It’s only natural to do that. It’s human nature; after all, here I am writing this post, assuming you assume!
So from the picture above, you might assume a few things like:
-that I have my life all together
-that my house is always clean
-that my kids are well-behaved and happy all the time
-that my kids listen and obey the first time I ask them to do something
-that I have an amazing marriage
-that my husband was totally on board with taking pictures
Isn’t it funny how we think we can dissect someone’s life from one photo and start assuming we know everything about them?
In reality, those assumptions are far from the truth. We need to realize that one picture is just a glimpse into someone’s complicated life. The picture above may have turned out great, but my life is far from it.
What the picture above doesn’t show is:
-that it takes every ounce of me to round up the kids — making sure they are clean and dressed — setting them in place, bribing them, then threatening them to sit still and smile when we take the picture
-all the junk and clutter on the floor next to my bed
-the complaints and whining from my kids just minutes before taking this photo
-15 years of fighting to make my marriage work
-the complaints and whining from my husband to get this over with
You also don’t see the late nights I have with sick kids or calming down my anxious daughter. You don’t see me breaking up fistfights or yelling at my kids to knock it off. You don’t see my personal struggles with self-worth, social anxiety, and fitting in at church and community events. I’m quiet because I’m nervous and scared to be myself, afraid that I won’t be accepted. The list goes on and on. People assume but never ask. One could avoid a lot of self-loathing and misery by not assuming and not comparing their life to someone else’s. You never know what others are going through. You can’t see the beaten path others have made to get to where they are. All you see is the one moment in time they are sharing with you.