TikTok to the Rescue

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tiktokMy name is Maria. I’m almost 44 years old, a mom of two, a wife, and an educator, and I’m addicted to TikTok. I remember when TikTok first started as Musical.ly. My students at the time were obsessed with Musical.ly, and I just didn’t get it. Little did I know, I, too, would be hooked.

Shortly after COVID changed our lives forever, I started to need an outlet that I could just watch in short segments and zone out. Enter TikTok. I could hide in the bathroom for 5-10 minutes and escape. It didn’t matter that I didn’t know these people or that I would never see them in real life. They were my new family and friends. And the best part is that they were always there for me. 

It is no surprise to me that the mom and teacher accounts are my favorite. I also love how easy it is to share content. Before I knew it, I was forwarding TikToks to friends, family, and, soon enough, co-workers. 

I love the quick, fun videos, the spoofs, the PSAs, and the recipes. It’s better than Instagram because TikTok has two ways to engage views, “Following” and “For You” pages. Personally, I stick with FYP because TikTok does a great job of knowing exactly what I need to watch to reboot.

Although I’m sure I’m not the demographic** TikTok intended to hook, I sure do appreciate all it offers. And apparently, they even have a feature to help you manage your time scrolling. Screen Time Management videos remind you to go grab a bite to eat, give your eyes a break, and stretch your legs. You have the option of setting a time limit of 40, 60, 90, or 120 minutes to spend on the app per day before you’re notified that your screen time is up.

Luckily, I have yet to get this reminder…have you?

**I especially love using random TikTok sayings (sheeeeessshhh), signals (TikTok arm gesture to suggest that someone is telling the absolute truth), or doing the dances (Savage Love is my favorite!) to embarass my boys and students.

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Maria is a full-time mom, teacher, wife, daughter, and sister, who feels pulled in too many directions! Her older son Michael took over 24 hours to be born, and at six-months-old was diagnosed with allergies to dairy, eggs, nuts, soy, shrimp, and wheat…all after exclusively nursing because she was SO SURE that would help him be a healthy kid. Luckily at age 1, he began to outgrow some of his allergies. Fingers crossed the others will soon follow because that plus a husband who doesn’t eat any veggies and Maria always battling her weight makes for three meals to prepare every night. Luckily, Christopher, her younger son, is a cooperative eater! As someone who has always been committed to making positive change, Maria uses her privilege and position as an educator and mom to work toward a most anti-racisit, equitibile, and inclusive world. Recently, Maria has even started getting up at 5am to workout in her basement. (Thank you pandemic living!) She is addicted to reading chicklit on her Kindle app in the dark, most Trader Joe’s products, and watching TikToks.

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