As we hyper accelerate and round the last curve of 2012 in our mach speed time machine aptly christened “Life”, some of us introspective types might feel compelled to take a little personal inventory. For those less inclined to the nitty gritty of retrospection, Facebook has conveniently provided the lazy (wo)man/ crib note version in its Year in Review 2012 feature. Why do the heavy mental and exhaustive emotional recap when you can just browse glossy pictures and click your way to personal growth? Because, thankfully, even the most rose-colored voyeur ultimately realizes that the review is really just a Stepford swathed digital photo collage. Privacy issues and invasions aside, quite revealing were my bulk of pics in those superimposed squares. I undoubtedly heavily abuse Instagram anti-aging light filters, I crop more than a farmer with a bumper harvest (aka Photoshop liposuction) and mortifyingly require, like, a minimum of 10 re-takes per shot. My stylized albums are almost entirely composed of my kids, my friends and family, all gorgeous and perpetually smiling with not a hair or step out of place. Almost every occasion appears joyful and enviable. No one seems to have experienced anything remotely close to abject devastation nor gotten a glimpse of despair nor ever felt utterly and nearly completely gutted. Hell, from the looks of it, not even one of us ate a lousy meal the entire year. For this arrogant infraction, the camouflaging of reality, I’ll go first in the social media confessional: I know much of my life to be a big photogenic crock of shit. Segueing right into one of my food shots for starters…take my Japchae Korean Noodles pic:
a truly disastrous dish which, incidentally, happened to mildly poison my entire household. A culinary learning experience was had though…the least of it being never buy Chinese imported melamine suspiciously masquerading as Korean sweet potato noodles from a shady 36th Street corner market. As for the weightier disappointments far heavier than literally a crap meal, too many of my loved ones were metaphorically round-house kicked in the stomach this past year. From a series of bad breaks to grave illness to gut-wrenching loss, many tears have been shed and angry fists hurled at the sky while cursing bitter and unanswered Whys??!! For all of you, my heart has broken a thousand times in both frustration and helpless defeat. To my very own undocumented failings as an often overwhelmed mommy and impatient wife. Those few and fleeting precious parenting moments regretfully lost to a tired haze. The poor decisions made in the name of the great equalizer of judgement called motherhood. My too often overlooking of the better for the worse in the long and arduous footrace that is marriage. The selfish neglecting of friendships, the clumsy missteps as daughter and shameful shortcomings as sister. The list is sadly long and regretful. The more complicated baggage we don’t post or share or can’t or won’t convey in 140 characters or less. The wrinkles, the muffin tops, all the mess below the belt. The blunders, the bummers and all the bitter pills swallowed. No, my real year in review is not to be found on FB, Twitter, Pinterest, Tumblr, et al…or even in my own beloved new blog but rather in the honest revelation found in being humbly human and perfectly flawed.