It is so easy to become a tabloid addict. You know what I mean, devouring People, US Weekly and In Touch one after another, ogling the bodies, lives and lifestyles of the rich and famous, and then in turn berating yourself for not even possessing a fraction of that perfection. These days the images of stardom, beauty and wealth are everywhere. It’s only natural to get sucked in, to start comparing and as a result – despairing.
Honestly, I do it all the time. I’ll hear a story of some starlet around my age, and inevitably I will start to compare myself to her. Almost immediately the focus turns from her to me. Why aren’t I rich, famous, successful, uber beautiful and happy as a clam? Granted, I know these feelings are more about me and my own insecurities, but surely I am not alone! I know others must fall into this trap too. Lately though, I am starting to realize that despite perfectly airbrushed portrayals of sunshine and lolly-pops, often the lives of the rich and famous are anything but perfect.
Case in point? Just this week, we learned that Madonna is divorcing her husband and Jennifer Hudson is dealing with the brutal murders of her mother and brother. These announcements are only the latest in a string of celebrity confessions and disasters ranging from addiction and depression to loneliness and mockery. Surely these stars are dealing with just as much as the average person, only they must do it in public. If I mess up and wear something horrible out with friends it barely registers, but a mere bad hair day could land a starlet on the worst dressed list in tabloids across the nation.
It’s hard sometimes to focus on the reality of the situation. The glossy pictures and gorgeous hair and make-up are so much more alluring than the underbelly of hurt and reality that celebrities so often mask with picture perfect smiles. Frankly, I don’t buy the tabloids anymore. If I find one or a friend gives me hers I’ll read it, but I try not to actively seek it them myself. Even though I know the veneer of fabulosity is fake, it’s still hard for me not to buy into it. I suppose all I can do is keep reminding myself that we all deal with stuff, and that no one is perfect. You get nowhere by comparing yourself to others, especially when the life you are comparing yourself to is mocked up, airbrushed and altered for public consumption. It’s like a horse trying to live up to the standard of a unicorn – the unicorn doesn’t exist and thus the horse will never succeed.
From now on I am going to try and guage my life and success by my own internal intuitions and feelings. I am going to get off the comparison train and get on board the “me mobile.” Surely, this will take time, but I am willing to give it a try. Plus, my mom always said “perfect is boring,” and I sure as hell don’t want to be boring so I guess perfection just isn’t an option.