Accepting imperfection is a challenging thing, particularly when we are bombarded with messages about not settling, manifesting dreams, having it all, and living our best lives. From talk shows to novels to movies and documentaries, we are pressed to create the ideal.
But does the ideal exist? Does it exist in this earth-bound realm? Or is the ideal just as much about attachment as it is about being who we want to be? There are plenty of times in my life when I have experienced the ideal. Visions of perfections likely concocted years before would manifest in fleeting moments, vanishing just as quickly as they came, making me long for more, making me wonder how to create it again.
What I am finding in my almost mid-life, post-partum, spiritual crisis is that reaching for perfection and working towards it is to be desired, unless it becomes something that clouds our vision and allows us to overlook the perfection we have already achieved. And let me add, most of that perfection is, well, imperfect.
Northwest Arkansas is a beautiful place in the Fall. The leaves turn to intense colors of gold, orange, red and brown before they drop from the trees and there are quite a few drives that would be breathtaking. But if you get a little closer than that picturesque postcard sized image, it is quite easy to see the decaying leaves that are losing their brilliance, the discoloration of the outer edges as they begin to dry, and random branch, twig, or rotting log that litters the forest floor. Is all this imperfection? Is our view of what we perceived as brilliant wrong? No. It's our perception of what perfect is that is wrong. It's our inability to let perfection be flawed and less than Hollywood glamorous. Perfection is right now. Perfection is the next step you take, the last step you took, and wherever you exist in this moment. Perfection is the body's ability to adjust to whatever imperfect belief we have about ourselves and it's ability to adjust back to perfection when we change our minds. Perfection is in between all that imperfection, perfection is in between all that messiness.
Perfection IS the imperfection. Flawed. Tattered. Exhausted. And ready to go again. Perfection is perception and your own ability to perceive the good things you have in your life and the long journey of achievements that have brought you to today.