April 13, 2015

Let’s Get Real


I have always been a perfectionist. I beat myself up when I let others down (or when I let myself down,) I don’t like to show my imperfections, and sometimes I spread myself too thin trying to be perfect at everything. With that being said, I think the only way to be a successful writer and to relate to other people, is to show your vulnerabilities. So, please know that what I am about to do is extremely unlike me and it takes a lot of courage for me to do this! But, I am excited to see where it leads.

Lately I have grown a great love and respect for people who easily share their “imperfections.” This can happen in many ways: when someone admits that they are financially hurting, when someone openly says they are tired of being a mom for the day and need a break, when someone isn’t ashamed to allow someone in their messy house, or when someone says admits their insecurities. The reason I have grown a love and respect for people who share such things, is because I can relate. I may not be able to relate to the exact problem they are having, but I can relate to having my own imperfections. Recently I made a goal for myself to always be honest in this way. I don’t want to be negative and  bring people down, but I want to do just the opposite by letting others know that I understand and that it’s okay! We don’t have to be perfect and no one expects us to be.

Once a month I play bunco with a group of friends. I love it because all of the women who attend are so diverse. It is a way for me to spend time with other women who are in the same mommy-stage of life as me and share our experiences. The other night we got talking about how we, as women, always compare our worst to others’ best. The reason we do this, is because that’s usually all we see. We are our own worst critics. How often do we see other mom’s frustrated and yelling at their kids? How often do we see people’s houses when they are completely destroyed? How often do we see other couples arguing? And how often do we see the stretchmarks on other women’s stomachs? These are things that happen all of the time, to everyone, yet very rarely do we see it in anyone’s lives but our own.

Technology is one of the worst culprits. What do you see when you open Facebook on your phone? If your Facebook is anything like mine, you see: a mushy anniversary post, a professionally photographed family picture, an advertisement for some tea drink that’s supposed to make you skinny (with pictures of women with awesomely toned bodies,) someone who just had a baby and is posting a selfie where they look skinnier than before they got pregnant (I SO wish I was blessed with this ability,) and a pregnancy announcement. Okay, I love all of these things!  Truly! It makes me so happy to see others happy. But, I want to see “real” things too! I want to see the family picture before it is edited and the baby’s head is photoshopped in from another photo when he or she wasn’t crying. I want to see a selfie of someone because they are just plain happy, not because they actually have their makeup fully done today. I want to see a post of someone doing service for someone in need. I want to see someone write a post about how they had a bad day but they are grateful for the things they do have

I love this quote: “God does not look on the outward appearance. I believe that He doesn’t care one bit if we live in a castle or a cottage, if we are handsome or homely, if we are famous or forgotten. Though we are incomplete, God loves us completely. Though we are imperfect, He loves us perfectly. Though we may feel lost and without compass, God’s love encompasses us completely.” (Dieter F. Uchtdorf, LDS General Conference Oct. 2009.) Isn’t that beautiful? If only all of us could look at each other and ourselves the way God sees each of us. We should all try to look at each other with complete lack of judgment, with full acceptance, and with love. Let’s see each other as we really are.

So, the girls at bunco came up with a great idea that I want to start implementing right now! I want whoever is reading this to post something REAL.  I don’t mean something negative, but, something that we all can relate to and appreciate. Something that will make others smile because they understand. Something that will allow all of us to laugh together because we know how it feels. Whether it be good or bad, just something real. Let’s start a social media movement that is empowering and uplifting! So, who is with me?! #REAL



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