I’m Not “Fine” — You’re Not “Fine”

Brooke Latas bio_headshot1Introduction from Alana:

Today’s post really resonated with me.  Brooke Latas shares her thoughts on what I call our “real” lives vs. our “Facebook” or “Social Media” lives.  Suffice it to say, they are different!  I am grateful for her candor and the way that she opens up about her own challenges and vulnerabilities to encourage each of us to do the same.

Brooke Latas is a wife and mom and step-mom and writer and artist and kids’ ministry worker and cancer survivor.  She loves to tell stories about life.  While writing and speaking opportunities are on her bucket list, she says, “somehow the laundry always wins.”  She is currently waging a fight against the laundry.  Game on.

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Bruises” by Pat Monahan (of Train) and Ashley Monroe.  Guest Post by Brooke Latas.

We are all in TROUBLE in terms of the way we’re choosing to live today.

“We are the most in debt, obese, addicted and medicated adult cohort in human history.”                    

— Brene Brown

What???!!!  But everybody looks so happy and buttoned up on Facebook and Insta.  How can this possibly be true???

Yep, its’ true.  Because the key to CONNECTION is VULNERABILITY…and we don’t display our issues (or real lives) on social media…or in our conversations.  We just explore how “fine” and “great” we all are…while we’re all secretly dying about SOMETHING that feels absolutely insurmountable on the inside.

This is CRAP…it’s a bogus way to live.  That’s why I freaking love the song “Brusies” by Pat Monahan and Ashley Monroe.  It’s the story of two people reuniting at a high school reunion.  They both come in with their assumptions that the other is doing “great.”  And after some brief exploration…coupled with a little transparency and authenticity…they realize they’ve both suffered loss and hardship…and that LIFE IS HARD.  That shared experience and vulnerability creates deep CONNECTION for them.  *Bonus:  It works in real life too!

I’m not “fine.”  You’re not “fine.”  Why do we always feel so compelled to look “fine” to the outside world?

I believe God designed LIFE to be a TEAM SPORT.  Our highest need is RELATIONSHIP.  And it’s impossible to build authentic and fulfilling relationships based on our “outer shells” (the parts we choose to put in pictures and release to the world).

Our culture is constantly encouraging us to “have it all together” – at the very least, in terms of the pictures we share on social media (which has become a “pseudo-social life” for many).

Let’s all explore being “NOT FINE” together.  And let’s INVITE EACH OTHER IN.  Yes, we’re all quick to OFFER help…but can we RECEIVE help?  That’s where the magic happens…being the “weak” one for a season.

As a very recent cancer survivor, I’m here to tell you…CONNECTION to people is vital when you’re hurting.  Here are some ways I RECEIVED HELP in recent months…

My “village” extended generosity and compassion is ways I couldn’t have even imagined.  I didn’t cook dinner from the date of my surgery (April 13th) through the end of July…which took our family all the way through chemo and side effects.  A woman I didn’t even know showed up to clean our house every time I had surgery and chemo…because friends combined efforts in creative ways that were so loving. People texted and called and sent cards and just sat with me and said prayers and took over my spot in carpools and loved on my kids in such tender and loving ways. My mom pretty much pressed “pause” on her own life to sit with me through every appointment, every chemo…and became my nurse, nanny and Uber driver. My husband, Drew, and our kids have displayed patience and positivity and resilience beyond my wildest dreams.

I wasn’t fine…and it was beautiful.

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