We make it too hard, much too hard. We take life and make it a competition, a space without room for failure, a crushing need for perfection. Taking the reins and assuming all the responsibilities that go along with adulthood, parenthood, and other hoods has never been easy, but we, the modern parent, are making it much too doggone hard (forgive me; I’m trying to clean up my potty mouth. Substitute every “doggone” with a solid f-bomb and it will feel more like me. See, I’m even making swearing difficult).
We’ve made our own challenges by allowing ourselves to be constantly judged by our peers; indeed sometimes we open the gates of judgment with the simple upload of a picture. We allow a discourse to take place on ourselves—our outfit, our clean/doggone dirty house, our jobs, our parenting style, our car seat placement every time we post a tidbit from our lives. I don’t know if anyone intentionally does so, but intention doesn’t change the outcome. We are judged.
And we judge.
And we judge ourselves against others.
We miss the experience, the true joy, the true sadness because we are forever trying to capture the memory. We rarely sit back (and certainly not with an old shoebox of disorganized photos) and relive the moment. I’ve still not printed out my son’s 6 month photos (we took SIX MONTH PHOTOS, AND NINE MONTHS, AND ONE YEAR PHOTOS). He’s six now.
So when we don’t have perfectly manicured lawns, or perfectly manicured brows we feel like we fail. Things get even harder when we judge our performance on things that ACTUALLY count in our lives (doggone news flash: lawns and brows don’t count for much). We try to do it all, we try to be the everything and of course we fall goddamn short.
Our failure seems big, and ugly, and all encompassing because we don’t see others fail. They DO fail, but we don’t see it.
So, we work hard at making things even harder. We take on more hours, join another weight loss challenge, join another parenting group, buy another pair of blessed leggings (Just me? I’m kinda betting not). We set more goals for ourselves and take it harder, and harder again and again because we WANT to be good at life.
And when it all comes crumbling down, we fail to see that we were always making it too hard.
So, for the next while I’m going to let myself wallow in the mess I’ve made of things. I’m going to get off this SUPER doggone phone and I’m going to let myself fail. And feel what that failure feels like. And know that I’m not the first one to fail, and that it won’t be the last time I feel failure.
And, I’m not going to make my failure into anything more than it is; it isn’t fodder for a future blog post, or an artistic shot for an Instagram story. It’s life, and it’s hard, but it doesn’t have to be any harder than it already is.
Here’s to falling and realizing the only next move to drag yourself up. Here’s to fighting to take the easy road because sometimes it’s the better one. Here’s to letting your minimum be all you have to give. And here’s to putting your energy where it really counts.
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