Pictured: the imperfect skin, sloppy handwriting, messy hair, and chipped fingernails. #BeBonafide

“Aerodynamically, the Bumblebee shouldn’t be able to fly, but the Bumblebee doesn’t know that, so if goes on FLYING anyway.” -Mary Kay Ash

The Bumblebee. Why are we not all like the bumblebee? The bumblebee doesn’t conform to the societal standards placed for it, based on what other people think the bumblebee “should” or “shouldn’t” do. It doesn’t let the ideas and opinions of others deter it from reaching its own potential. It doesn’t decide it can’t fly just because it shouldn’t be able to. The bumblebee just flies.

A few months ago I came across an instagram campaign called Be Bonafide where people post their confessions. We live in a world heavily influenced by social media, emphasis on the “heavy.” Our feeds are littered with photos of vacations, pretty spaces, beautiful people, and other ideals. As social media has become more and more relevant in our lives, studies are showing increased rates of depression. Coincidence? An art has been developed, the art of capturing just the right image to portray what looks like perfection. As these types of photos fill up more space, we start to see the lives of everyone else through rose colored glasses that make us believe they have a wonderful life. As part of human nature, it is only natural to feel the urge to compare with others which makes it hard not to feel depressed about the hand you have been dealt sometimes. Be Bonafide embodies the idea that life is NEVER perfect, no matter what the image looks like, and rather embraces the idea of nobody being perfect and instead trying to be more…. Genuine. Real. Bonafide.

So in a world where people constantly try to show off only the good to maintain a reputation, I come in with a confession. A confession that goes a little bit deeper than just my lack of hygiene habits. I have talked about my struggle with depression after having my baby before, but one of the most difficult parts of having depression was that I literally felt incapable of doing anything. I had no energy, I had no will to live, I could barely make myself get up from the bed without tears. This largely affected my ability to take care of myself, I would just forget, to shower. Yes. I would forget. I just couldn’t think about it, and when could remember it would feel so overwhelmingly difficult that usually I couldn’t make myself do it. Yep, I know, that is disgusting, but that is only part of fighting a mental illness. As I sought help, got treatment and medication, and slowly started to recover, showering was just something that didn’t come back naturally. I know it sounds weird because now I do actually really enjoy taking showers when I take them, but showering just didn’t seem like a “necessary” thing anymore. Working = Necessary. Taking care of my child = Necessary. Spending time with my husband = Necessary. Exercising = Necessary. Showering…..just takes up a lot of time spent on myself when I could be focusing that time elsewhere.

It may seem a little crazy, but that was my logic and even though I do force myself to shower regularly now, I still can’t bring myself to do it every day. Or every other day. Or even every 3 or 4 days sometimes (to my husband’s dismay, ha!) No, not because of depression anymore, but because I am flat out lazy. I openly admit that. Pretty much my best friends are deodorant, dry shampoo, and up-dos with the hair. I recognize that a lot of people will probably think I am gross or that this is an embarrassing and personal thing I shouldn’t be sharing on something as public as the internet, but it is part of me. It is a flaw that I have and embodies just part of my imperfections. It is something that is NOT perfect in my life which means it doesn’t typically get displayed for public to see and know, but that just goes to show that life behind the pictures ISN’T perfect.

Sometimes I look at my social media feeds with my ideal lifestyle printed right onto a 612×612 square and then look over at my piles of laundry and fat rolls spilling over my jeans and can’t resist the urge to roll my eyes or breathe sad sighs, but ultimately no matter what it looks like in other people’s photos, life is NOT perfect. Life is messy. And screwed up. And hard. But all of the messiness is what makes it beautiful. Life may not always go how we think it will, but we shouldn’t live confined by the box society thinks we should fit into, we should embrace what isn’t perfect and like the bumblebee, go on flying anyway. I may not always accept that truth so easily, but just as the brush strokes on canvas create the most incredible paintings, the strokes of imperfection make life the amazing thing that it is.