Wednesday, January 11, 2012

Perfection Eluded

"Why can I never get this house CLEAN??!!?"
The words erupt out of me, carrying with them the stress I feel in every pore of my body.
I look and see someone's toothbrush on the needed-to-be-mopped-days-ago tile floor and shudder.
Undoubtedly the little owner of that gross brush will put that thing in his mouth for the express purpose of cleaning his teeth.
Seems ironic.
I am beyond caring about such minor details.
I yell at the little owner to replace it in the bathroom drawer so at least I don't have to look at it anymore.
My words cut, even I can feel that.
Somedays I wonder why I even bother at all.
No matter how many times I have them clean up, no matter how many times I teach them to put their things away, the hurricane is relentless.
When they are tucked into theirs beds all peaceful and cozy with sweaty little heads, the destruction they've left in their wake is still there.
A pile of laundry here, a light saber there, a puddle of who-knows-what under the table.
Oh well, I think, the dog will lick it (whatever it is) up in the morning.
I trip on Lego's and plastic horses in the darkness on my way to kiss their stinky, sleeping heads.
Do I battle the winds day in and day out?
Do I stay up and clean?
Where did the hours in the day go, anyway?
Or do I just give in to the chaos?
Where is the balance?
Why can I not have a perfectly clean house and perfectly well behaved children who are perfectly smart in all areas of learning who never fight?
Isn't that the goal?
Why does it elude me so?
The answer comes painfully sharp to my heart.
Because I'm not perfect.
I am not perfectly clean, though I try hard. My desk is a pile of things that need to be dealt with, but haven't yet.
I don't always behave as I should. I yell and fuss when I should bend down and hug.
I have yet to learn all things. Along this home school journey I feel like I am the one on a quest for knowledge. Doodle is learning about U.S. history and the constitution and the branches of government. I must have missed that whole year in school because I am ashmed to say how much I am the one learning from her 4th grade lessons.
I wish I could say I never fight. I have a strong will and sometimes I just can't let things go.
So there it is, friends.
I (believe it or not) am less than perfect.
Much, much less.
So are my children and my house and my husband and my dog (she pooped on the floor just yesterday).
(Little M&M is the only perfect one around here, but that's only because she hasn't learned to talk yet.)
And guess what?
I don't plan to be perfect anytime soon.
If there's one thing I've learned time and again, it's this: no matter how seemingly perfect someone might seem on their blog or on facebook or at church, they are not.
Well, maybe THEY are, but I'm not, not by any stretch of the imagination.
I have my struggles, temptations, annoying habits and ugly bed head when I wake up in the morning (which stays with me on the days I don't leave the house).
We have messes in the living room after a long morning of studying.
Sometimes I go into the kitchen at 4:45 with no idea as to how it got so late and no idea what I'm going to make for dinner.
I often feel overwhelmed and stressed and even angry.
Those are the days when I snatch up the only perfect one in the house after dinner and take her to my bedroom and lock the door and just snuggle her on my rocking chair in the quietness.
I breath her in, trying my hardest to ingrain her babyness into my memory to conjure up again once she's all grown and they're all gone.
So for now I think I'll leave the mess.
I'll just sniff all of my babies heads on my way to bed and it will be enough, more than enough.


momof7 said...

Amen and THANK YOU!! You put is just right and like I said, Amen!!!

Scotty and Emi said...

I think we're both feeling overwhelmed today. Only you said it so beautifully!! There's so much to balance! So much to balance. So many people to make happy.

I loved Elder Uchtdorf's talk from last conference. We're not meant to be perfect yet, we're only meant to do our best. Now I promise not to judge you and you promise not to judge me! :) I think that's the true secret.

Mr Bird said...

This is my favorite part "Oh well, I think, the dog will lick it (whatever it is) up in the morning." LOL

Emma said...

I so agree with everything. I can't expect perfection in me or my kids, just that we keep trying. Beautiful post!