A few weeks ago, I updated my profile picture on fb with a frame representing my alumni status of the university from which I graduated. It was homecoming weekend, I’m old now, and I felt like being connected to a time before babies ravaged my body and laundry consumed my life ?.

It doesn’t happen often, but I had liked the picture I was using as my profile picture. It was taken the day I had my hair done and back when I was getting lash extensions.

It was also 10lbs ago??‍♀️.

Regardless, I was now ready to remove the frame but for the life of me could not figure out how. The only option I seemed to have was to just re-upload the original picture from my fb album.

The problem with this is that by re-uploading the picture all of my 400+ fb friends would see “Jill has updated her profile picture”.

(Are you impressed that I have over 400 Facebook friends?? I know, I know. Most of you get 400 likes when you post a selfie feigning exhaustion, cradling your coffee, on another manic Monday. Clearly my cyber friendship is not a hot commodity ??‍♀️. I’m not running for office folks, so I suppose I don’t need to be too concerned about my numbers, or lack thereof. Though my snarky comment about you and your fabulously busy Monday with all your “likes”, makes me wonder if maybe I do need some validation??)

Back to my social media conundrum. I did not want everyone to see that I had re-updated my profile picture with the same picture they had already seen me update with almost a year ago?. It’s sad. They know it, I know it; stuff has happened. Pounds were added, hair was neglected, and the lighting in my last few several photos was not my friend. There is no other reason to use a photo that old. I just wanted to quietly, under the table, reinstate my “good” photo without the fancy frame and without alerting everyone.

After ten fifteen minutes of trying to fix it, I finally gave up. What a ridiculous waste of time. I’m embarrassed that I allowed my vanity to occupy 15 minutes of my life which should have been spent doing something worthwhile.

Why am I concerned what anyone thinks of my appearance? Sure, maybe mama is packing a few extra pounds and my stretchy pants are my only pants these days. I’m working on it and I’ll get there.

But in the mean time, I kind of love my life. Well not kind of, I really love my life. I get to stay home with my babies and work alongside my husband. I have people in my life who love, encourage, and hold me accountable.

Last year was a very challenging trying time for our family. A time of transition and stepping out in faith like we’ve never done before. The peace and contentment we found on the other side of uncertainty and fear is indescribable!

So you know what, I am going to love this season of life. Right now. Today. As I continue to work towards my health and my spiritual goals. As I continue to grow, and work to better myself for the work ahead.

And for my first little step towards further surrendering pride, I will be sharing this lovely picture. Such a great memory of laughing and playing with my little girl while big sister was at school and baby sister napped. Greasy hair, extra weight in my face, my makeup done by a 4 year old…and a perfect memory.

I don’t want anyone to think I have jumped on the bandwagon of “everyone is perfect just the way they are”. We aren’t. Now don’t get all flustered and start hollering that I have offended your sensibilities. Take a deep breath and just hear me out. We are all flawed humans and every day we should strive to do and be better. Anyone who claims to have reached perfection as a human is delusional.

Y’alI we are flawed! I am not addressing the aesthetic flaws we hyper-focus on. Well actually, in a way I am. I am addressing our self-obsession with our physical appearance and our concern with what others think of us in regards to it..

Can you imagine a society where people worked to improve their character and focused on their spiritual life, with the same commitment and tenacity they expend stressing over and focusing on their outward appearance?

I am not saying we should quit taking care of ourselves. Our life and our health are a gift and we should do our best to treat them as such. I am also not saying we should stop doing our hair, putting on makeup, or wearing clothes that make us feel good. If you want to stop it all, that’s fine; some days I fall into that category. But that is not the message here.

There has to be a recalibration of our hearts and minds so that we are able to shift our focus from the superficial to the substantial.

I am going to be real honest here and say I struggle. Each morning I try and recalibrate and refocus, and by day’s end I still come up short. I’m toting around extra baby toddler weight that I am reminded of every time I go to put on “real” pants. I spend more time and energy addressing this and other surface concerns than I’d like to admit.

I have allowed myself to become distracted by the superficial at the sacrifice of the substantial. I want to do better. I want to be better. I am in no way, “perfect just the way I am.” But as I work to become a better version of myself, I don’t want to be weighed down by the frivolous. I don’t want to forfeit any more substance along my journey.

If any of this resonates with you and you feel the weight and frustration of this battle, give it up. Let others have their opinions and stop trying to keep up appearances. Throw off the superficial and embrace the substantial.

Oh, the peace! The sweet merciful peace that consumes the spirit, when we remember what is important. When we focus on what is real and meaningful rather than the empty facade that so often distracts us. I want to live there. I want to live amongst other flawed people striving to be better humans. People focused on good and created for a purpose. Seekers of truth, givers of grace, possessors of humility.