Tuesday, July 3, 2012
Debunking the Myth of Perfection
To combat almost 100 degree temperatures, the boys and cousin Grace hit a splash park and then followed up with a frozen treat at a local ice cream store.
One of my dearest friends called this afternoon. I've always placed her on a pedestal. She's just about perfect in every way: Harvard educated, bakes like a trained pastry chef, cooks like a professional, looks like a supermodel, decorates like a Design Star, and that's just the start. And her kids? Well, they make the Duggar children look like a bunch of juvenile delinquents.
So I guess that's why I was so surprised by today's phone conversation. It went something like this:
Dear Friend: So tell me about your marathon training?
Me: Well, I've just started and...
Dear Friend cuts in (directing her comments to her children): Hey, I told you we were picking the Barbie movie. Turn off the Teenage Mutant Ninja movie right now.
Cries and wails filter through the phone's receiver.
Dear Friend: Sorry about that, what did you say again?
Me: I've started to do a couple of long runs, they're going...
Dear Friend cuts in again (speaking in a higher octave): That's dangerous and against the law. You cannot take your seat belt off in the car and you know that.
Dear Friend: Let's try again. Tell me about your training.
Me: I've really just started...
Dear Friend (fully exacerbated): Oh my goodness, why did you get into the chocolate chip cookies? You're completely covered in chocolate.
At this time, I can't continue our conversation as I'm laughing too hard. Truthfully, somewhere deep inside I was celebrating. I was just a wee bit glad to witness (via a phone call) her imperfections. (How many times have I sounded like that on the phone?) This realization drenched me with guilt. Did I really want my friend to suffer?
Of course not.
I dearly love my friend.
I realized hearing what was going on with her children didn't provide me with joy, but comfort. Twisted, I know. I was comforted in the fact that I'm not the only one that deals with unruly, messy, crazy children. The conversation on the phone debunked any silly notions I have about perfection. No one's perfect. No one's children are perfect. Even Harvard-educated supermodels have children that leave them speechless and flustered!
As we finished the phone conversation, I felt an even stronger connection to my friend. She isn't perfect and her children aren't perfect either; but she is still perfect in my eyes.