Perfectly Imperfect

I started another semester of my attempt at a college degree and I am taking a rather large workload. This works against my personality in so many ways. You see, I am a bit of a perfectionist. Getting a 100% at the end of the semester is the ultimate reward. I actually get disappointed if I get below an A on an assignment. Now, I don’t have a perfect 4.0 GPA, but it is still pretty high up there. I only say these things because I am trying to show a major flaw in myself….perfectionism.

Did you know perfectionism is most definitely NOT a good thing?! I have had to work on this in myself for probably the last couple of decades since I was even a child. I realize much of my perfectionism comes from trying to please a parent who quite possibly, I will never please, but it is still wrong. How many times have I redone something that my husband or my sons have done because it isn’t the way I would do it; which of course is the perfect way? I stress over coursework because I am afraid I will do bad and people may think I am imperfect. Well, there is another problem with perfectionism. It allows fear to have a foothold in your life. I have become afraid of being imperfect.

This is an ongoing process for me. I have to sit back and realize that I only need to do my best with school. I have a fantastic GPA and I feel like I am learning quite a bit; which is kind of the point! When I redo something that my sons have done, I am telling them that what they did isn’t good enough. I know at times kids don’t do their best, but often enough my boys work hard to clean something and I have to praise them for what they did and thank them. I don’t want them to give up because they think they will never measure up. When I redo something my husband has worked hard on, I am telling him the same thing…what he does just isn’t good enough; YOU aren’t good enough; YOU aren’t as perfect as I am. Sounds a little like pride too doesn’t it?

This is a reminder to myself just as much as it is to possibly help something out there. I can’t get stressed over one question wrong on a test. I don’t need to check and recheck household chores because I saw a speck of lint on my floor. Well, I may recheck my boys’ bathroom because, let’s get real, boys can be a little nasty!

Any comments to add to this? How do you find yourself buckling under the pressure of perfectionism??

Social Media Venting

I love social media. I am a stay at home mother and I currently homeschool one of my sons. I tell my husband that social media is one of my outlets to the outside world. The problem I have with social media, is the passive-aggressive attitude that many people take with it. I have multiple friends on different social media outlets that post all their private issues right there, for all to see. I am always bothered, when I see a spouse posting negative things about their husband or wife. Now I am the first to say I mess up, but I don’t like to grab my phone and frantically type out all my husband’s flaws on my facebook app after we fight. 

One of the problems with this is that eventually you may get over the fight and hopefully resolve it, but that isn’t the case for the many people who read about the issue. I have one friend who constantly writes posts after an argument. She gets over the frustration within a few days, but I find myself being irritated with her husband because of what she posts. I find that my opinion of him is swayed unfairly. It is also very manipulative. My husband should not be afraid to disagree with me because I may post something on the internet within moments of an argument. 

We need to love our spouses enough to keep our garbage off the internet. We get over things, but once that junk is out there, we can’t take it back. Now I understand we all have the right to say what we want on our social media pages, but do you really want people out there to constantly think negatively about your spouse? How about if roles are reversed and your spouse is constantly posting negative things about you? Maybe you show up to a party where each person has read everything that your husband posted about your latest fight and they can’t get past it. What would that feel like?

This may seem simple and harmless, but I love my husband enough to keep our garbage off the internet. If somebody has a poor opinion of him, I won’t like that, but I will sleep better at night knowing that it isn’t because of me. You can post what you want, but remember, once it is out there, you cannot take it back. Sharing with one close friend is much different than sharing with tens, hundreds, and even thousands of people via the internet.

 

Adults Only

I was one of those young people who hated hearing the child cry when I was trying to eat at a restaurant. I wondered why somebody would choose to go to a restaurant, or even a movie with a child! Now, after 12 years, I have five of them. Five sons who cry, throw tantrums, yell, sound their alarms when they want me or their Daddy to come running to their rescue. I have seen both sides and I have to say, neither is wrong. When I went out before I had children, I didn’t want to have to listen to a child crying for three fourths of my dinner. Nobody wants to hear that. I didn’t want friends bringing their toddlers over to my home to break literally everything within reach of their grimy hands.

Now I am that mother. I am the one who cannot be in my house one more minute; I HAVE to go out for supper because today has been one of those days and I want somebody to serve me for once. Often, people come up to us to tell us how well behaved our children are, but not all the time! I feel bad when my baby cries out because he dropped something and can’t get it. I see the looks. I hear the mumbled comments. Believe me, I understand. 

We are in a place now where people love to get together, without kids; Adults Only the invitation says. I would say it is 19 times out of 20 anymore we get the adults only invitation. Now I need YOU to understand that we just can’t do that. I respect that you have every right to not want screaming kids running around and breaking your stuff, but you need to understand I have FIVE, yes FIVE, children. Our family moved across the nation to follow what we believe is the will of God for our lives. We have no family and no really close friends yet. We don’t have people who offer to watch our kids anytime we want. We are a close family that does everything together. My husband and I maybe get a date once, sometimes twice a year, but now we are supposed to rush and find babysitters because every invitation we get doesn’t allow children? I don’t even trust many people with my kids. I don’t know any babysitters, let alone a babysitter that could handle 5 boys. I don’t even want to know how much a legitimate babysitter would charge to watch my five kids for a few hours. I think we would have to get another job!

I love adults only invitations. I may cringe now when I get them, but it isn’t because of the hosts. It is because we have five children; we live on a tight budget; we have no family to help; we have five children; we didn’t win the lottery; we won’t let just anybody watch our kids; we have FIVE children! I think you get my point. 

Next time you get the adults only invitation, don’t feel bad. I don’t feel bad about it. We may be the only couple that doesn’t show up. We do NOT want pity. We understand your purpose in the invite. Please understand our purposes when we politely decline the invitation. One day, when our children are older, we will love to come to your adults only parties, but right now, let us enjoy our children, who are five wonderful blessings that God gave us. Don’t make us feel bad because we have children and want to spend time with them. And parents with children, don’t make others feel bad who don’t have children and want those adults only parties. Nobody is right or wrong. Just understand we are in different places in our lives right now and love each other for it. 

Hope

I have a great life. I love it. I get to be home with my boys. I get to attempt to be a good cook and most of the time my family eats it; my husband always eats it. What a good husband! I have been blessed with so much more than I deserve. That is the kind of God I serve; I deserve not even close to what He gives me. 

The one thing I have never had, is a house. A house to call my own. A house to decorate and fill up with children. A place to make memories. We have had 7 places to live since the conception of my firstborn. We have wonderful memories in each of those places; don’t get me wrong, but it was always temporary. I am a woman who needs security. I think most women do if they are honest with themselves. Even though we have moved often in the past, my husband has bent over backwards to help me feel more secure. 

Over the years there have been multiple times we were going to buy our house. Something always happened where it just never happened. We want to save up money and 5 kids later, we still rent. I love to daydream and hope one day I will have my house. I realized these last few years however, that the hope I once had, has all but left. I want to hope, and I know there is a sliver still there. I was texting my husband the other day and I told him, “I am afraid to hope”. No. I am actually afraid to fail, to be let down, to once again feel that disappointment.

That sure doesn’t say much about me and my faith. I have put all my faith in man and my circumstances; not God. My God is my provider. He is Jehovah Jireh. God gives us hope. If we don’t have hope, we aren’t believing who God is. 

So today, looking forward I will have hope. I will have faith. I know that God is faithful and He loves me. God knows the future; we don’t. I don’t need to worry or lose hope because He has always taken care of us; no matter where we live. One day, hopefully in the near future, God will reveal to us what He wants us to do, where He wants us to live, when He wants us to do things etc. 

Don’t forget who God is. Don’t make the same mistake I have made. Always believe; always hope; always dream; always love; always have faith, because that is how God made us to be.