A Day in the Life of an Instagram Stalker

In grade 3, my teacher told me that “a picture is worth a thousand words” and until today I insisted that wasn’t true. This post might be heavy for some people, but if you’re as curious as me then I know you’ll read on.

I’ve recently started following random people on Instagram whose lives I find interesting. There’s no other way to put it and let me expand on that before you think I’m a freak. The outdoors have been a huge part of my life in so many ways and through different opportunities I’ve gotten to know and become friends with people who would fall into society’s label of “hippie”. No, not a hipster, I’m talking like vegetarian, yoga-loving, possibly dreadlock-growing hippie. I wouldn’t consider myself a hippie-mostly just because I think I use too many products that are harmful to the environment-but I’ve always been interested in the calm and carefree lifestyles that some of these people lead.

So, how does this have to do with Instagram? I recently started following a girl who loves yoga and eats amazingly healthy but delicious looking vegetarian concoctions. I’m not even positive where she lives because her pictures are from her travels all over the world. Over the past couple weeks, she’s been posting pictures leading up to her wedding. It’s like the comic book version of a reality TV show where you only get a picture every couple days and have to piece together the plot.

Through the descriptions of her pictures I realized she’d lost someone close to her in a crash. So today when she tagged her friend’s Instagram in one of her reminiscent descriptions, I clicked on it. The most recent photo was uploaded 16 weeks ago… Now to solidy what I suspected, I then went back to the original yoga-loving girl’s Instagram to look at her photos from 16 weeks ago. That’s where I found a picture of her hospital stay following the crash accompanied by vivid descriptions of what it felt like to lose her best friend.

I was shocked to find she’d literally lost her best friend 4 months before the “big day” that everyone you love in your life is supposed to be present for. But what was even more inspiring was the similarity between her photos prior to the accident compared to the photos afterwards. The vast majority were of her doing yoga with a smile on her face followed by descriptions telling people to love life. She continued sharing her passion with others even when she was struggling.

Unfortunately I sometimes find that the content of this blog follows a clockwork: midterms, exams, break, midterms, exams, break, etc. but as students we need to occasionally remind ourselves about what’s actually important here. What will really crush you or make you soar is the people you surround yourself by and the random chance events that affect those people. Studying and work will always be on the “to do” list, but spending an afternoon trying that thing you’ve always wanted to do with that friend you keep rescheduling with may not be. I still don’t know if a picture is worth a thousand words, but I do know that you can express the importance of 3 Instagram photos with 540.

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