There are days when I wish to be a more perfect mom. Days like today, for instance. Days like today when my husband came home, asked me how we were doing, and I tried not to cry. I felt like a failure today.
Me: I wish that I were more perfect. I wish to be a more perfect mom.
Life: Hm. What do you mean, exactly, by more perfect? You realize that Living is, by nature, imperfectly perfect, right? Your son. He’s imperfectly perfect. You blither on about that enough for me to think that you, at times, Get It. That you get that life is lived in the moments.
Me: Well, sure. I mean, I know that none of us are perfect. And that’s why I want The Land of Empathy and Wonder. To find empathy and wonder for all of us in our imperfectness.
Life: I don’t think imperfectness is a word, but yes, you did. So why is it that today, you wish that you were more perfect?
Me: Because today, I sucked.
Life: Today, you sucked at what, exactly?
Me: I sucked at you. At Life.
Life: Hm. And how do you feel about that?
Me: Don’t sound like some uninterested therapist. Just listen.
Life: So, you just want me to listen?
Me: No! I want you to help me to be more perfect!
Life: I can’t help you there. That part is up to you.
Today, I had a lessthan perfect parenting day. My little boy was up last night. A lot. As the dumbass who stays awake until 2 a.m. much too often, Tucker being up, with sniffles, and cuddles and the messy, imperfect perfectness of childhood put a dent in my idea of a perfect Monday.
Mondays are the day that I have with Tucker. I mean, I have every day with him, but Monday is when he’s out of school early, that my husband works late, and when we find magic in tractors, mud, airplanes, sliding, and us. Mondays are when We Play. Mondays are when I blow off work, when Tucker comes home early enough to not be tired, and when we have hours and hours to fill as we wish. Mondays are this (although this was taken on a Friday):
Mondays are when we create elaborate games with me acting as an air traffic controller, and Tucker as the pilot, the wind, and the sun.
Mondays are magic.
Today was Monday. Today was less than magical. I was tired. My little boy was tired.
But, I heard Life’s voice, saying that being Perfectish is up to me.
Life: Perfectish isn’t a word, either.
Last night, Tucker was up. A lot. He wasn’t feeling well and he couldn’t sleep…every time that he put his head on his pillow, green buggery snot clogged his nose, his throat, and his breath. Which meant that last night was a night when I was in his room. A lot. Singing, stroking, soothing, and grumbling at Life.
Me: I’m so tired. When will I have time to finish my work? I’ve neglected work for three days now. When am I supposed to shower? I’ve blown that off, too. When do I get me? Do I only get me when there are single digits on the wrong side of midnight?
Life: … *silence*
I was grumpy and completely imperfect.
Until I almost maybe wasn’t.
I wasn’t because we played. We lived out loud. Although I didn’t take Tucker to the playground, where perfect often happens, we did have perfect moments. Chase. Airplanes. Silliness, laughter and happy. We had that. We had perfect. It just didn’t feel perfect, all of the time. It felt imperfect, tired, and less than. But sometimes, perfect enough is perfect enough.
Me: I was imperfect today.
Life: You’re imperfect everyday. As am I.
Me: I was perfect during parts of today. There were perfect moments woven between the lines of my imperfect parenting.
Me: Sometimes, you sortof suck.
Life: Sometimes, I do. But mostly, I don’t. I gift you with perfect moments. When I am there, in your breath, in your words, and in your heart. When I remind you of all that you have, while you’re resting in the dark or laughing in the light. When peace happens. I remind you that while you’re busy being imperfect, that you’re actually experiencing perfectly perfect.
Me: Yeah. What you said.
One thing that I’ve found that brings me closer to perfect every day is giving to others, when it matters (and this matters). Today, I sponsored a family so that they may have a Thanksgiving Dinner, as part of Jill Smokler’s Thanksgiving project. Want to feel more and do more? Help others. It works. I promise. To participate, just click on the button below.
Life: Yes. This. This is mattering.
Me: I think you used mattering in the wrong way.
Life: No, I didn’t.
Here for the story behind The Ordinary Super Halloween Costumes? Click here.
Special thanks to my dear friend Rachel who blogs at Tao of Poop (best blog name, ever) for encouraging me, and lifting me up when I needed it most today. And all of the days…