We all know what a perfect day looks like, right? When everything goes exactly the way you planned, when all the details fall into place, and when you are able to communicate exactly what you meant to say, without a single misunderstanding. No one says something ridiculous, you don’t get your feelings hurt, you get everything you wanted, exactly the way you wanted them. Ah, the satisfaction that comes with perfection!
Wait, What? You’ve never had a perfect day? How is that possible? You’ve been practicing perfection for 15,466 days! How in the world haven’t you managed to figure this out yet?
At this point in my life, I have accepted that perfection isn’t the point. We’re not racing to figure out how to be perfect. We’re racing to figure out how to live a life of meaning. And, if that’s not what we’re here for, I am afraid we might discover a disappointing result.
Measuring Meaning — I Should Have Been an Amazing Mom
We all have a different way to measure meaning. And, it likely will shift as we grow older. When I was first navigating the world of #adulting, I thought my purpose was to be a mother. I wanted 6 kids. I wanted to have playdates and snuggles on the couch. Perfection was a happy marriage with doe-eyed cherubs, and the feeling of little sweaty hands reaching out to me for one more bedtime story.
But that wasn’t in God’s plan. And it took me many many years to come to terms with the path that my life was going to take. Whether or not I was a willing participant. Much like the path of a hurricane. We can try and prepare for what we want to happen, but we’re not in control of what will actually happen. And, that’s the hardest lesson of all. Please don’t worry about me today. That dark period is well behind me. But it didn’t happen on its own. And, today, I choose to be happy, content, and completely accepting of the path that God has chosen for me.
But it wasn’t always like that. It took what seemed like an eternity to come to terms with the GPS signal that I kept trying to re-route.
No: I thrashed, and fought, and cried foul. Raging against my misfortune, my guilt, my shame, my loneliness. I chose to let my failure to conceive define me.
Perfection is a Myth
Until I let go.
And that is when I realized that perfection was a myth, and the world I lived in was going to go on with or without me. I could stop playing the victim, and letting depression suck the purpose out of me, or…. I could rise.
I had that choice — I still have that choice. Every day, I make that choice. You have that choice too. But the choice to make a difference is one that requires work, sacrifice, and accepting that you might be called in a different direction than the one you are pining away for. Sometimes, it is just easier to hate. You can hate for so many reasons. And they are all legitimate reasons. We can justify our pain, and we can always find someone who will let us feel sorry for ourselves.
Get off the Roller Coaster!
The roller coaster ride that describes my life before I let go of my desire to control it wasn’t one I was proud to claim as “My Life.” But the person I am today is. And, the nugget out of that mess was that I found something to live for. I stopped blaming and started loving — myself first, and then you. I love it because it’s a gift I have been given by those around me, but like their love, my love isn’t perfect. I get my feelings hurt — more often than I would like. But the sensitive, wounded heart that felt so bitter when I was in my 20’s warmly admires the woman I discovered I was capable of being in my 30’s.
And when I started to see the Nugget in each day, each day became a little brighter. My focus on MY way turned to a focus on letting my life be what it was designed to be. If there’s a lesson in all of that turmoil, I know my path is to help others out of that place and to see what greatness exists in the world.
Those who don’t know me might think I am crazy. Might think I have no handle on reality. Might even judge my idealism. But that is not my concern. Today, my concern is the person I see in the mirror. And that woman, makes me cry tears of joy, instead of tears of shame.
Finding your Nugget
And, every day I rise, I am blessed with the nugget that I have the strength and the fortitude to carry whatever burden I am given and choose to move forward. What is the nugget in your day? If you’re stuck in the darkness, I understand. But I am not here to shame you for your pain. I only wish to encourage you to start looking for that one thing that will help you get beyond it. And, once you have, let that be your nugget.
PS: There is ALWAYS a Nugget, as long as there is a desire to see it.