Tuesday, August 26, 2014

don't Instagram that sunset

This sunset and I had a moment last night. Driving home I had one eye on the road and one eye on this gorgeous sky. Do you ever have a moment when you're completely alone and everything just feels so right? The sounds, smells, even the temperature. I was full of joy and satisfaction last night around 8:04 pm when I snapped some blurry moving pictures of the dipping sun. And pictures this beautiful need to be shared, right? But when it came time to post I just couldn't do it. Ya see, I knew I couldn't communicate just how awesome and beautiful and awe-inspiring this moment in time was. So I kept it for myself. Until now, of course.

But waking up this morning and looking at this picture again caused me to reflect on just why I didn't want to share it. Seriously, I have like a few hundred Instagram followers, what's the big deal? But it goes deeper than that. I've been thinking a lot lately about social media and it's effect on society as a whole. There are those who view it as an awesome networking tool, those who only want to keep up with the grandkids, and those who are borderline paranoid and stay away from it in general.

No matter which group you find yourself in (I'm still figuring that out for myself), I have come to the realization recently that over sharing tends to cheapen. Hear me out on this;
Looking back on my time here in the US with family and friends has been so amazing. I've gone on trips, reconnected with decade old friends, shared meals with distant family members, and revisited places new and old. If I was the scrapbooking type this summer have a major picture-filled book to sit on my shelf.

And in a way, our social media accounts are like scrapbooks, right? But do you bring your scrapbook to a job interview? Or to a Sunday morning church service? Or even to a night out with friends? My favorite pictures I have of this summer are not the ones shared on Instagram, or tagged on Facebook. They're the ones that only I and a few others have ever seen. Taken on nights where the only people who knew it happened were the people there.

Hear me out, I'm not quitting social media or rallying for you to do it either. I guess I'm just saying to cherish those quiet moments that don't need to be shared. The great moments/pictures/stories I decide not to share are the ones most cherished to me. And I feel like if I put them online for everyone to see it almost lessens their value. Is that me being selfish and kind of ridiculous? Maybe. But try it sometime. Spend an amazing night with people you love, and keep it just to you. Some things are too good and beautiful and awesome even for Instagram.

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