06 October 2014

It doesn't have to be perfect to be beautiful

It is so easy sometimes to focus on the things in life that are not perfect.  Whether its home decor or your marriage, we are constantly bombarded with the message that if something is called beautiful that means it is perfect or very near to perfection.

My sister and bro-in-law got me this book for my birthday that I wanted to read for a really long time.  As I've been reading, I spent a lot of time reflecting on the different area's in my life where I've made myself believe the crazy ideas that life has to be perfect to be beautiful.

It is so easy and dangerous to get consumed with perfection...so says the recovering perfectionist.  Reading this is helping me look around at the various "imperfections" of our apartment/marriage/my life with more gentleness.  Those mysterious black spots I cannot seem to get out of the carpet?  That obvious scratch on our hutch that needs another touch up of yellow paint?  The smallness of our apartment?  Somehow I can look at those things and they bother me with much less crazy intensity.

NOTHING in life is perfect.ever.  Our home will always have a fix-it project on the to-do list...marriage will never be easy and it will always take hard work...my beauty is not determined by shape/size/a number on a scale.  And in the realization that there is such beauty in imperfection is kind of really freeing.  The only thing is we have to look for it.  

When I was growing up I had this older cousin I really struggled with inwardly comparing myself to.  I can remember at family holiday gatherings thinking she looked so.perfect.  Not a curl was out of place, her make-up looked flawless, and her outfits always coordinated with just the perfect touch of accessories.  I am embarrassed to say but there were times I would make it a contest in my head to see if I could out-do her in "looking perfect." 

At the time, she was the epitome of glamorous to me. And I hated her for it.  I have been reflecting on those memories recently and am seeing how all those holiday's of self-comparison only reinforced for me the idea to be beautiful=looking perfect.  But the older I get, I am starting to get more comfortable and accepting of my imperfections.  I realize that even if my cousin "looked" perfect, I would not really want to be her. 

Life can be beautiful amidst imperfections.  Home can still be a warm, welcoming place to be even amid the dust and paper piles.  Your home is a place you feel safe and make memories, it is not supposed to look like a staged apartment.  Marriage can be beautiful even amid difficulties and growing pains; it will never be perfect this side of Heaven and will always take work. 

But those difficulties and inky stinky things to work through end up making you stronger, they purify your heart and intentions.  Don't wait till you reach a goal weight to look in the mirror and tell yourself you are beautiful (and mean it!).  If the number on the scale defines how you see yourself, you're giving wayy to much power to that number.

Who would have thought a home decorating book would have been such good therapy for my soul?!  Looking for the beauty in imperfections of life is similar to gratitude.  Its easy to be grateful when life is all hunky dory, but its another thing to be grateful when you are struggling to look for things to be grateful for.  Same thing with beauty.  If we only see beauty in the perfect things, we miss an amazing opportunity to challenge ourselves to find beauty in the imperfections.

Don't sweat the small stuff and remember...





2 comments:

  1. I'm in the middle of reading this book right now. So glad to hear how it touched your heart! Beautiful.

    ReplyDelete
  2. I've never even heard of this book, though! I like the message. I have perfectionist tendencies of my own and this is good to remember!

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