What I mean by PERFECT

@postaday 47; #postaday2011


OK. I got called out by my friends for my mini pity party yesterday, a tweet sent out on Twitter and copied to Facebook:


@Lavagal wishes she were perfect.


Truly, very kind of my friends to tell me I’m fine just the way I am. And I know that’s true, but given a few minutes of spare time to look around or listen to the people who work near me, I sometimes feel a bit inferior and that I’ve been lucky not to have been found out yet. Note to self: Avoid breaks.


I’m surrounded by movers and shakers and the confidence brims as though it were an endless pool. They are clever. They are smart. They are nice! They never get tripped up, no one ever surprises them, nothing ever falls between the cracks. Their hair is smooth. Sometimes their hair feature colors found in nature. Sometimes they don’t. They have flat tummies, taut thighs, arms sans bat wings. I would wager none has bounced a check or missed a credit card payment.


Is life a breeze or does everyone else fake it, too?


Are all of you a work in progress, even though you hide it well?


Last night after dinner, after homework, I ordered the girls off their computers and to put on their sneakers as we were going for a walk in our Hawaii Kai ‘hood. No hesitation. They were ready in two minutes. We bounced out of the house and I led the way. The girls chattered lightly behind me. I enjoyed hearing them as I pushed the pace up to turn this into more than just getting a little bit of fresh air. It was cool and breezy. The sky was cloudy, and we couldn’t see the stars. We walked a part of the neighborhood we never had before, disturbing dog after dog (we’ll go a different route from now on).


It was remarkable. Yes, we’re one of those families whose kids could vegetate in front of their computers around the clock if we let them. I knew something had to change. Although Sophie doesn’t really have a problem with getting her homework done or keeping up with her studies, Charlotte does. For Charlotte, the computer is where she shines. But we all have to be well-rounded individuals. A lot of times what’s going on with the computers disintegrates into bickering between the Benderettes.


Last night was different. After we got home from our quick, brisk walk, the girls got their showers and into bed before 830 p.m. There were no battles, just this smooth transition into bedtime rituals. I was folding laundry and realized how peaceful it was. I savored it. I waited until I was done before I went in to see them and say good night and commend them for it. That for me was a perfect moment.


I realize we are all working toward our own personal perfection, and that such pursuit takes each of us into a different direction. I cannot be you, or any one else, and neither can my daughters. And instead of taking a moment to myself to wish I were like someone else, I could take that moment and remind myself of what is in me that might make you smile. After all, I do that with my children.