On Imperfection…

Sometimes, things just don’t go so well… and that’s O.K.

The modern global culture, especially social media culture, is obsessed with an unattainable standard of perfection. From the perspective of the outsider looking in, everyone is on cloud 9. It’s no wonder that this causes severe cases of anxiety and depression over time, as individuals come to believe that they are the only ones left behind in imperfection.

Imperfection creates character in our lives… it’s the spice that turns out a little too spicy, and is therefore memorable. What are we, if not a compilation of broken pieces fused together? Whole, but imperfect.

Yesterday, a friend of mine told me she’s “a buzz kill”. This is why she doesn’t want to spend time with others lately. I thought this was both alarming and funny… but not in the “ha ha” sort of way. We don’t see each other clearly. If we did, we would know that everyone is carrying a burden and hurting, one way or another. Perfection is not real. Would we even want it to be? What’s the fun in that?

Today, another friend brought up the fact that everyone our age seems to be spiraling forward to the next new and big adventure in their lives. Feeling the pressure from all of the change she’s witnessing, she is questioning whether she’s falling behind. Is there such a thing? No matter which way I slice it, it seems to me that we are all always just in time. The right time is just different for everyone.

People who know me personally and read my blog say the funniest things to me… “How did you figure all this out?” they ask.

Here’s the great secret… If you were paying attention, you would have seen it repeated in several posts… We are all winging it! 

We are all learning and we’re all in this together.

We all have good days and we all have bad days.

We all need help.

And guess what… not a single one of us is perfect.

The truth is that perfection is a farce. Anyone who preaches that “perfect is possible” is lying to you. In fact, not only are they lying, but they are also misleading you. The goal here is not to be perfect. The goal is to be happy, and to know that you are not alone in this world. There are others out there who think like you, who worry like you, who feel like you, and fear like you. There are others out there who fight like you.

We’re all in this fight together. Our job is to create a safer world for you, for me, and for them.

That’s better than perfection.

That’s love.

And remember… we design our own luck! 

M.

On Laughter (out of place)…

Why do we laugh?

Because it’s funny… because we’re happy… because we are entertained… we laugh for all these great reasons.

We laugh when we are uncomfortable, hurt, confused, and angry too. We laugh when we don’t know what else to do.

I remember often laughing too hard and my mother reminding me that “smart girls don’t laugh for no reason.” Our cultural etiquette reserves laughter for the hysterically funny or hysterically unsettling experiences. It was not uncommon to hear someone tell a morbid joke and be greeted with fits of laughter: “Oh! How unfortunate to die in a car accident in this country. There are so many more creative ways to go about it!” Ha. Ha. Huh?

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On Pain…

We all have pain.

We have all survived something. That’s the nature of life.

It’s easy, of course, to look at other people and imagine that they have no pain at all. The Instagram highlight reel is absolute perfection, so we assume everything else must be perfect too. If we have learned anything from the double-shock of losing Kate Spade and Anthony Bourdain in one week, however, it is that we could not be further from the truth.

We all have pain.

Not one to indulge in celebrity culture, I was quite taken aback by how much Bourdain’s choice to die caught me off guard. I haven’t been able to write as consistently because I’ve been trying to wrap my mind around this heartbreak. How can someone so incredible, with such an abundance of God-given gifts, who brings such light to the world, be so overwhelmed by darkness behind closed doors?

Why did he have to go like this?

We all have pain.

Let me share a few personal stories…

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