Tuesday, December 22, 2009

Define "Perfect"

What is "perfection"?
I can be such a perfectionist that it can really interfere with my enjoyment
or my ability to complete a task.

Case in point, this blog..

Unless I can put up a post that includes everything I really want to say, or show me at my best,
I put it off.

I LOVE to read other blogs. I love to see all the pretty pictures and be inspired by the gorgeous tablescapes and flawless stitching. I see beautiful photography of food and craft,  and feel inferior because I have no idea how to recreate it myself. Sometimes I put so much pressure on myself to be inspiring and clever that I judge myself before anyone else has the chance.

And then I freeze.

I never judge others as harshly as I judge myself. That is good for others but not for me.

So... where does this put me? Well, I have not blogged in almost 2 weeks, both out of extreme business and also, truthfully, out of shame.

So......Ahnalin wanted to make "rolly cookies". This is her term for sugar cookies
that you roll with a rolling pin and cut out with cookie cutters.
"rolly cookies" stress me out. Really!

I love to cook, and bake. However, while my cooking tastes really yummy,
I stink at the whole "presentation" aspect of it. I tend to prefer drop cookies, like chocolate chip and oatmeal, because they taste incredible and everyone expects them to be lumpy.

But Christmas cookies, well, they are supposed to be beautiful. I love to look at beautiful Christmas cookies. And I love to eat them. They remind me of the dozens of boxes of different kinds of cookies that my grandma baked every Christmas.

Her cookies were PERFECT, and oh, so good!

So, in my frustration with not being able to make perfect pretty cookies,
I put off the whole "rolly cookies" thing.

But Ahnalin begged and begged.

I have to work hard to remind myself that not only am I teaching
my children through my words, but also through my fears and actions.
If I so bind myself up in fear that I stop enjoying simple things,
then I am setting her up for the same things.

What is perfectionism?

Well, I see it as an overwhelming need to be in control
when so much is out of my control.

It is the fear that everyone sees all the broken spots in me and chooses to judge rather than love.

I do the same thing to myself, that I fear in other people.

Everyone who knows me in real life knows that every time they compliment me on my singing, I will tell them about all my wrong notes.

They know that if they tell me they love a dress I designed, sewed, smocked, or whatever,
I will show them every missed stitch.

I need to learn to just say "Thank You", and accept that as a gift,
rather than a place of potential judgement.

2 Timothy 1:7 says this:
"For God has not given us a spirit of fear, but of power and of love and of a sound mind."

Yes, my perfectionism can make me crazy! And God wants me to be of sound mind!

So, I bit the bullet, pun intended, and we made cookies.
 I let her decorate them.
These cookies are far, far from perfect.

Some are too thin. Some are lumpy.
Some have little chunks missing where the cookie cutter overlapped.
Some broke before we could eat them.

But we made them together.
I helped and she took the lead.

Ahnalin thinks they are perfect cookies.

And I think she is perfect exactly how God made her.

And God, my Heavenly Father, wants me to learn to accept myself the same way.


MamaOfTwo said...

One of my favorite scrapbookers, Ali Edwards, always says, "Embrace your imperfections". Hard to do, sometimes; but well worth it.

Loved the post, Sivje. And you're right - God does love us, just the way we are. We need to follow suit.

Merry Christmas! BTW, the cookies look Delicious! Good job, Ahnalin!!!!


Goosegirl said...

Thank you Michelle. The cookies WERE delicious. They are gone now! Heehee!

Holly Days Closet said...

I think Ahnalin is right they are perfect and you made more than cookies you made a memory with your little one which she will have forever a fun day making cookies with her Mom. You can't get better than that. Have a great holiday.

DidaHeart said...

i love all the pictures of baby bug! love this post mommy

seamsgreat said...

Sivje, I think you were raised in the South. We learn at an early age to beat a compliment off with a stick and you can say anything about any one as long as you end it with "Bless Her Heart"

All your "Cookies" looks wonderful! :-)

Mona @ la la by mona said...

Bless you and your cookies! It just brought tears to my eyes. First, because I can so relate to everything you wrote. I have had many of those same thoughts and tendancies.

Second, because making rolly cookies is such a wonderful tradition. Not only are you making yummy things to eat - you are creating lasting memories for you and your family. The cookies are absolutely perfect. And you are a good mommy to not only deal with your thoughts and fears, but to love your children enough to sort through them and use them to pass on valuable lessons for them. I wish you and your family a very Merry Christmas and Happy New Year!