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Hello, my name is Lisa, and I think I love Instagram.


I got my iPhone several months back, after much foot dragging and mindful consideration -- and I loved it right away.


But I didn't start using Instagram and I thought I might not ever start. It is, of course, largely to do with the way that all these new media tools can eat away at our time and our concentration and our presence with the people we love. I believe, as Sue Atchley Ebaugh says, that "the greatest gift we can give one another is rapt attention to one another's existence" -- and I want to give that to my child, my husband, my home.


I am also concerned that by ceaselessly sharing the (beloved) minutae of my life, I might cease actually living it.


How, also, do all these tools which offer, among so many other wonderful things, such regular validation and immediate gratification get in the way of a deeper, harder won, more enduring contentment?


I can't stop thinking about Ma Ingalls. Surely, surely, she would have liked a sister or aunt or neighbor closeby -- some grown woman to talk to, to cook with, to help birth her babies, to ruminate on parenting or relationship challenges with. But she didn't have that, and she did build a solid, joyful life with her family.




I am still thinking about all that.


But I have also started using Instagram and I am having a lot of fun. I don't think I have the words yet for why -- maybe those among y'all who are using it too can articulate?

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Uploaded on July 23, 2011