“You don’t have to post everything you know”.
“What are you doing-recording your food?”
“Ugh, there she goes again. You look much thinner online. How do you do that?”
These are just some statements and and questions I get often. Some readily tell me they are too busy to always be online. I used to become defensive and even logged off all my platforms once.
I asked myself the question: What would I be doing if I wasn’t watching a loc tutorial on YouTube, scrolling through popular hashtags on Instagram, liking posts on Facebook, watching funny videos on Snapchat and re-tweeting the last Yamaneika Saunders tweet?
I discovered: I read more books-not electronic versions either. You know books, the ones that have pages that you turn-yeah those.
I also looked my husband in the eye more when he talked to me. I have a habit of keeping my eyes glued to my cell phone as I listen to him discuss the latest boxing match, Tom Brady football play or Lebron James’ newsworthy philanthropic venture.
He prefers eye contact and once I logged off, I gave him the eye contact he feels necessary to engage in ever-thrilling sports talk. Did you catch the sarcasm there? Never-the-less, eye contact increased with him and others.
It was interesting. I liked it. I can see myself doing it again. Please don’t be shocked, taking a break now and again is healthy and at times needed to recenter oneself.
Don’t get me wrong, I love social media. Not only am I able to stay connected with college friends near and far, I’ve also reconnected with family members I otherwise would not see. I enjoy watching the lives of those I love through the lens of their camera. I live vicariously through those short 60 second video clips. I can admire pretty babies, congratulate those that have graduated college, share condolences for those we have lost and get my daily dose of beautiful examples of black girl magic.
It’s through social media platforms that I am able to have fun with taking pictures. For those of you whom knew me before the social media explosion, you already know I love taking pictures. I took a photography class my senior year of high school (Shout out to Mr. Franco, Norwalk High School-not sure if he’s retired yet but he inspired many including myself to not only love art, but to create it).
For the holidays that year I took black and white photographs of some family and friends. I directed their poses and I snapped away. Once developed, I framed them and gave as gifts.
The use of social media platforms allows me to share my love of photography even more.
Going back even further, open any of my mother’s old albums and you’ll find me posing for the camera-forever ready to strike a pose. As the middle child in a large family in addition to my award winning-extroverted personality: I thrived off the attention a camera lens provided . Oh-you have a camera? Take my picture! Snap away!
As my older, more beautiful sister retreated I stepped forward front and center; ready with hands on narrow hips and a gap toothed smile.