Tuesday, March 29, 2005

How to be imperfect.

I always thought that perfect was tres desirable. That candles and four star dinners were par for the course. Music, lighting, ambience, all of it for a night of being with friends. I find that I need to package my life. I look for the ideal and strive to make it even more desirable. Noone comes into my life without a theme night or a reason that I could have easily conjured from a hallmark card. And don't even get me started on Hallmark cards.

I have almost been to the point of perfection obsession. I pour over cookbooks. I place magazines strategically in the living room. Wine Spectator? Come on, I am a recovering alcoholic with the latest issue prominently displayed in my library. I spray annoying room spray that secretly drives me crazy. I have Girls Night In with all the trimmings. If I actually used tupperware, I am sure I would host the party myself. Martha Stewart? Rachel Ray? Nothing on me. I can command a perfect evening even when I am about ready to fall over with exhaustion. I rarely even stop to taste what I am cooking. Rarely do I engage in conversation with my guests. Rather, I try to make everyone as comfortable and happy as possible, even if it means sacrificing my own need. I have actually become despondent instead of throwing in my own two cents at a debating dinner party. And if you knew me, I have a voice that could debate for hours.

And for what reason? What is it that makes me go to great lengths of perfection? With some thought and self-psychoanalysis, I find I am looking for some reassurance that I am "normal". I am afraid of what is inside me. Will people accept me if I am not the perfect host? The perfect girlfriend? The perfect woman with an imperfect past? I am unsure of myself as a sober woman. I am hiding among the issues of Vogue, a diary of all of my shortcomings. I count them daily and then quickly proceed to disguise them with fondue. Or room spray. Or a matching set of dishes straight out of Pottery Barn. I can conjure up all the reasons that I am not perfect and squash them with a good house cleaning and serious redecoration. I am learning the ins and outs of my life. The ins and outs of my personality. Limitations. Boundaries. Qualities that make me fabulous. Qualities that make me human. Things that I need to improve and things I do not. And in the process, I am trying to learn that I will be accepted by some and rejected by others.

Would anyone still love me if they knew that I have smelly feet? Or that I can't stand to shower with my expensive soap that comes neatly packaged in a bottle? That I cry at the drop of a hat or I listen to the sappy music? That I seldom do my dishes and I eat in bed with numerous books at my side? Would I still be viewed as a woman with passion and creativity coming out of my ears? Would I spend the rest of my life alone if anyone knew that I sometimes skip running and watch infomercials on TV for hours on end?

Fast foward to epiphany #1241. Last night, I fell asleep on the couch with my man beside me. I didn't wake up when he went to bed. I couldn't move a muscle. I wouldn't be able to scratch his back and make sure he was sleeping soundly. I stayed there, unconscious, happy, fed and full from a long and wonderful day. It didn't matter that we'd had a spat that day. We had already made up. Sleeping on the couch didn't signify anything other than a moment when I decided I was just too damn tired to move. No issues. No alterior motives. It just simply was what it was.

And I woke up this morning, and he was still there...undeniable grateful, I am sure, that he had the bed to himself, but there nonetheless. In my moment of self induced imperfection, he stayed. He didn't leave. He didn't decide that I was strange or weird because I had curled up with the blanket instead of him.

So, this morning, I left a house full of dishes. Those are for him to do. I didn't have time to make coffee or Eggs Benedict. My curly hair, being naturally imperfect, was askew. My shirt,a stain on it that I may not have hidden so well with the trenchcoat. I kissed him goodbye, grabbed some easter chocolate and headed out the door at 7am. All in all, I have simply decided that perfection is not my forte. I am far from it. But learning who I am, imperfections and all, is the package deal I may have been looking for all along.

1 comment:

ShelleyL said...

Congratulations Sobriety Girl!!! You are NORMAL!!! I have learned and am still learning that there are an infinate number of correct meanings for that word....and your description of yourself from last night is just another correct one. You will find that you really dont have to make the lives of all your friends perfect when they stop by either. It is cliche, but try to make yourself happy. If done properly for all the truely important people, you all will benefit! Have a great day and enjoy yourself. O:)