It’s so very easy to get swooped up with the holiday season and be immersed in the blog posts full of gift ideas and last minute shopping sites. It is easy to feel inept with not having made a beautifully crafted present for every friend and acquaintance. I think that when we, with the power of the internet, begin to compare ourselves to the portrayed successes of other people (especially women) we can begin to feel like we fall short. I haven’t been consistently blogging for how-ever-many years. I don’t have an incredible small business that we run (yet!). I don’t make home-cooked meals every night. Sometimes it is hummus and cheese. Other times it is chips. I don’t have a book published (like this fabulous lady!). I have a drawer (actually, a few desktop folders) full of short stories mocking the send key on my keyboard. (Yes, a send key. In my writer brain the enter key is the send key when submitting my writings to a literary journal, editor, etc.).
I come home from my long days at the office, grab a glass of wine, and sit my butt down in front of another episode of the Housewives of Somewhere and I zone off into a land of not having to answer questions, solve problems, schmooze, or just be the professional, powerhouse of a woman (maybe only in my mind!). I have stacks of sewing projects and needlepoint projects sitting in the closet. I have a stash of yarn from fabulous yarn shops with many beautiful scarves created in my brain (I am still at the knit, and barely pearl, stage of knitting so scarves it is!). (Why does the word scarves look weird right now? Is it scarfs? Damn spell check is allowing both versions of the word. Ok, well, we are dealing with it)
I guess what this whole rambling is leading up to is this: all bloggers (it’s true-I have seen the posts), and crafters and homemakers, and perhaps all women, probably feel like everyone else is more organized, more pulled together, more creative, more successful, further ahead in their careers, better dressed, successful organic vegetable gardeners (as opposed to having 2 large raised beds full of weeds and heirloom tomato plants from the 1800′s that you continually murder), cleaner homes, finished renovation projects (and the money to complete them), happier families, thicker wallets, fancier makeup, better hair, better stocked book shelves, etc. etc. (I understand if you stop reading this now. It does sound so superficial but you know what? I am turning over a new leaf and turning off the perfectionism button).
I wish that I could say that I don’t compare myself against the successes of others. I wish that I could tell you that I don’t have a list of things I want. I wish that I could tell you that every time Fossil or Lucky Brand (or that damned J Crew) comes out with a new brown leather bag/boots that I simply turn the page of the catalog and think, oh, I have enough brown leather bags. And truthfully, I do say, oh, I have enough leather bags, but I sometimes get this odd sense that I need something (new ipad, phone, boots, eames chairs, etc.) and that success or happiness means having that something. I didn’t say that any of this is rational. It just is. And for right now it is what it is. Greed? Perfectionism? Unfullfillment (not even a word but I am ok with this)? Distraction? Inspiration? Misdirected/misplaced sense of purpose? Who even knows!? I sure don’t. At least right now I don’t. But I guess this is where a few things come into play for my New Year. 2013 is the year where I will be attempting to strip away, peel back, uncover the reasons for all that lays inside of me and my desires to be more, better, perfect. My 365Project will be a self portrait a day for the purpose of showing myself as human (zits and all) and also finding the beauty in myself. Beginning to actually like the pictures I take of myself. Maybe even…are you ready for this…maybe you should sit down…maybe beginning to LOVE myself. Gasp! Shocking idea, eh? Well, maybe this is where all of this comes from. And even if it isn’t the reason, it sounds like a good place to start.
My dear friend Kristin, while handing me my Christmas present said, don’t be offended. We both laughed as she then said, I guess those words aren’t the best thing to hear when recieving a present. And you know what? Her present was perfect. She gave me a book called Be Happy without Being Perfect by Alice D. Domar, Ph.D. and Alice Lesch Kelly. And I will read the book. I will chew it up, digest it, let it swim around in my brain, find places for the truth to begin to reside. All while not beating myself up that I don’t have my Ph. D. like the author does. I know…I sound hopeless! Ha!
*If you, too, have written about this same/similar topic, please comment and link to your blog.
*I can’t find the location/original place this picture is from. Pinterest takes me to some random url of the picture. (If you know, please share.)