My relationship with Facebook (and social media in general) is a massive rollercoaster. There are days that I love scrolling through Facebook and seeing all the adorable pictures of my friends and family looking incredibly happy. There are also days, or months, when the scrolling unearthed such a strong sense of longing for what I was missing that I had to shut it off completely.
Social media sites claim to tell the story of a person’s life, but let’s be real, people only share the good on social media, they rarely share the bad. I also find it hard to believe that everything is all good all the time, so it’s pretty superficial. That superficial view is NOT reality. Reality is, everyone has a story.
There are also times when I am personally in a good place, and then I scroll onto a post or video of something that hits very close to home, for me that’s child-loss. BOOM – I am a sobbing mess, and that one post could stick with me for days. I try very hard to keep myself out of the dark “hole” that is grief, so as much as I like seeing these posts, there are times when I am not strong enough to handle it.
On the flip side, social media has reunited me with friends who have become a very important part of my life, and my recovery. When I see photos of my friends who have also lost their babies, it gives me hope and light. It shows me that all things are possible, joy, rainbow babies, smiles and good times. I have held on to those posts for as long as I needed to during the dark times. I also know that the dark times can return at any moment, so if I need to, I can hop onto Instagram and scroll through the posts of mom’s just like me.
The bottom line is that social media brings out what’s going on inside of me. My joy, insecurities, longings, goals, connections. I have learned to appreciate it for what it’s worth, a tool to see a very small snapshot of family and friends, to stay connected with others and the world, but I now know after a lot of practice that I need to “scroll with caution.”