Saturday, May 12, 2007
Letting Go of Perfectionism
This first part was written Friday...
The other day I posted about letting go of perfectionism when I created the sign for my kitchen. Here's another example of accepting imperfection and enjoying something even when it's not just right. This is a pretty silver tea pot that I found on a "free" table at an antique shop. Yes, free! In my world, antiques for zero dollars are a good thing.
It has a tarnished place on the front that won't come off even with cleaning, and although it's hard to see, one of the feet is broken off. I've balanced it with a tiny stack of cardboard pieces that hopefully aren't too noticeable in real life. I think it's pretty, even though it's not pristine. It has character. Sometimes you have to look past the imperfection and see the possibilities.
On a different, but related note...
This weekend a new acquaintance and her family are coming for supper. I'm once again having to let go of perfectionism. I've been to my new friend's house. It's without a doubt the cleanest and most organized home I've ever been in. Even the gas cans in the garage are arranged in graduating order by size. It's beautifully decorated. A wonderful place! I would love to be that organized, that good of a housekeeper, but I'm not. I could beat my brains out trying to achieve an unrealistic level of perfection (which would be an exercise in futility anyway), or just not have them over because I feel intimidated. Both options are silly. I've had to come to a place of peace about my imperfect homemaking skills and realize that as long as my house is reasonably clean and orderly, I can cut myself some slack. Maybe I'll be perfectly organized one day. Right now I'm not. I have to live with that and not let it keep me from sharing my home with others. People are more important than perfection.
We had a lovely visit. As I cleaned, continued to unpack, (yes, still), and got ready for our guests I kept having to prioritize and knock less-important tasks off the list. A few minutes before they were due to arrive I felt near tears at all I hadn't gotten done, but I had to force myself to accept that everything wouldn't be just right. As it was, Billy helped me a ton and cooked supper (fried fish, yum!), so I couldn't have gotten that far without him. What a guy!
We had a wonderful evening! My friend kept using terms like, "A wonderful place to come...so relaxing...homey...cozy..." I couldn't believe it. I felt so encouraged. I had to practice what I preach and realize that everything really doesn't have to be exactly perfect to extend hospitality. Yay!