For much of my life I have been striving for perfection. Whether I wanted to be the perfect student, perfect daughter, perfect mother or citizen, it was always a goal for me. And, even though I knew on some intellectual, realistic level that perfection is impossible, I still tried to become perfect in all ways.
And somehow, I don’t believe that I am alone in this pursuit. I believe that most of the persons that I have met in my life, and have had some sort of relationship with, were trying to aspire to be perfect in one or more areas of their lives. And the truth is, it is a totally lost cause.
We may be able to tell ourselves that from time to time. But the reality of it all is that we keep trying to be the most perfect human we can be. And, the real reality is, is that by nature of being human, it is impossible to be perfect.
So we keep trying, and trying and trying, to do it anyway. And, then we become so sick of our inability to be perfect at something, we decide to perfect the art of self loathing, self hatred, shame about who it is that we are. We berate ourselves incessantly about not being the perfect size, weight, age or social status.
For the last week, I have done the deed with sheer beauty, of telling myself just how gross I am. Because I weigh more than I did three years ago, because I feel like my shorts are a bit tighter after a few July 4th celebrations, I give myself permission to be a hater, a hater of myself. It is awful. It is painful. And, the truth is, I choose it. Until the time that I don’t.
When I am not busy doing this, I am in the realm of knowing that I am imperfect and flawed, and pretending to others that I am perfect on the outside. I act like I have it all under control, while on the inside I am a complete mess. Am I alone in this pursuit? I think not.
What is the answer? One way to handle it is to continue to live a dual life, being imperfect but pretending otherwise, and struggling with that angst through most of your waking, and maybe even, sleeping moments. However, there is another option. One that brings more peace and balance.
Embrace your imperfections. Now, as I say this to you, believe me, I am saying it to myself as well, because I need to keep hearing it, keep believing it. We as a human grouping are deliciously and beautifully flawed, unique in our imperfections, quirks and behaviors. Yet, that is what makes us lovely, and relatable, and balanced and free. For when we remember that we don’t have to be anything, except who we really are, on the inside and outside, to everyone, we can breathe a sigh of relief that we don’t have to hide anything anymore.
Are you ready? I know I am!!!