A group of friends, sharing cheese, wine, sourdough, roasted garlic, and kale the other night asked each other what they remembered from childhood.
After we all answered, one woman said, “But what do you remember most, the good or the bad?”
In unison, we all answered “bad.”
My friend then explained her theory that if we remember moments of bad from our childhood, it’s because the bad was shocking and abnormal. That most of our childhood was kind and calm and uneventful because we were loved and supported and able to do the play and learning and exploration of childhood. This is not the reality of many children in the world.
The bad bits we remember, she argued, are anomalies. And that’s why we remember them. So, too, our children will remember the stuff we agonize over: the moments of short temper, the unreasonable “no,” and the time we’re too busy to play. But they’ll remember that because their lives are full of patient “yes”es when we do whatever they need.
When I got home that night I had a link to this post from another friend. In it, a mother discusses how doing her best is exactly enough for her children, who need her more than they need perfection.
It’s a good read and I recommend you click over, because remembering to cut ourselves some slack is a really good idea.
Earlier this week someone asserted that my best wasn’t good enough. A friend who knew about my effort and about the criticism emailed me, “You’re doing so much, and fuck perfect.”
Do you think we can get this month National ‘Fuck Perfect’ Month? It’s just the right time of year for kicking should to the curb, I think.
Would you choose another month for Fuck Perfect or is November okay with you?