Archive | January, 2013

Learning from imperfections

11 Jan

As I stated in the last post. I tend to be a perfectionist. Not a perfectionist with OCD but one who obsesses in her mind about something until it is done correctly. I stress about things as small as getting out the door on time up to big things like planning events for my team at work. As soon as one task is done I am on to the next. My mind is constantly racing. One task that occurs everyday is our morning routine. I try to keep us on a schedule. I have a routine that remains the same everyday but there is not one day that my Olivia can make it through the routine without some sort of event. Of course as much as I try to be perfect Olivia creates imperfect moments that throws off my routine. You see she is very smart but as smart as she is also scatterbrained. She is easily distracted and has a difficult time dressing herself. You would honestly think that after nearly three years I would be used to the imperfections. But being the one who seeks perfection I believe that I will get her dressing herself correctly. Yes I said dressing herself CORRECTLY. Yes she is 6. Yes she is book smart. Yes she has a quirt that drives me crazy most mornings. Here are a few examples of the quirt I am talking about. These are a few of the things Olivia has done while attempting to dress herself: She has put her head through the sleeve of her shirt instead of the hole for the head (more than once), she has put denim jeans on backwards and even buttoned and zipped them (only once thankfully), she puts dresses on upside down (a couple of times), she puts her clothes on inside out, she puts her shirts on backwards (too many times to count), and shoes are on the wrong feet 85% of the time. Now I know some of these things seem typical for a 6 ½ year old, right? Well that isn’t the most bazaar part. You will ask her “Olivia, can you guess what is wrong with the way you are dressed?”. Her reply after looking herself over “NO”. You think after taking 20 minutes to dress that everything would be on correctly but that isn’t the case for Olivia. Even after telling her what is wrong and you send her to fix it, she will come back at least once with it the same way she did it the first time. I often lose my patience because the perfectionist in me just takes over. I give the same lecture “Don’t you know how to dress yourself? You are smart Olivia Gabrielle! Do you know we are going to be LATE?!?!” She just stares at me blankly and then cracks up. Is that laughter I hear? What is funny I often wonder.. How can it be funny that we go through this everyday?! Well this morning was different. This morning she did something new. No, she didn’t get dressed correctly the first time lol. She wore a button up shirt and she put her head in between the first and fourth button And for the first time I decided to find humor in the situation. Most morning my thoughts go to how and why but not today. I found it so funny that I actually took a picture. You see since I have been trying to let go of perfection I am finding myself laughing so much more. I am finding that if I could just relax and allow these moments that Olivia dresses herself imperfectly become perfect moments to laugh at later then the stress would simply decrease in a lot of ways and I‘m learning that the girls sure have a lot more fun when their mother stops stressing over imperfections.

What things does your child or someone in your life do that you stress over and react negatively tos? What humor could you find in the situation to bring a smile to your face and theirs? I know that this morning Olivia and I had a good laugh over her shirt, then I took the time to fix it, and then we were out the door. And I’m happy to report I was also 15 minutes early for work. Maybe I should just find humor, snap a picture, forego the lecture, and simply fix the error. Yes, yes I should and I do believe this will be my reaction for now on. So funny how much children can teach their parents!

“The most valuable thing you can make is a mistake – you can’t learn anything from being perfect.” ~ Adam Osborne

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My Perfect Little Imperfect World

2 Jan

Well I know the title might seem a bit odd to some folks so let me explain.  I’ve always enjoyed reading and writing.  I’m not the best at spelling, grammar, being “politically” correct, or even saying things correctly the first time but I love to write, talk, and share my life with others.  (Good thing I am now finding imperfection comical because I’m sure I will make a lot of mistakes while blogging.)  I think we can learn from each other.  I love reading other blogs about parenting because I love that moment when I don’t feel like I’m the only mom going through something or the only one that has a child that doesn’t listen or whatever the story might be.  I love relating to others.  So here is how my title came about.  You see from a very early age I liked things perfect.  I like things that are neat, clean, and simply “perfect”.  Although I am not a perfect person, I never have been and I never will be perfect, that is however what I always strive for.  Before becoming a mother striving for perfection was a much simpler task.  I was able to get somewhere on time, my house was neat, I had energy, and I could plan an event and everything went perfectly.  However the road to motherhood was not a simple task but hindsight I see it was a perfect journey.   To make a long story short, I met my husband when I was 15 years old, he was 20.  2 ½ year later we walked down the aisle and said I do about a month before my 18th birthday.  Six months later I decided (and convinced him) we needed to start a family.  Was I young, of course but ever since I was a little girl I knew all I wanted was to be married to a man like my father and to be a good mother just like my mother was.  At age 12, I told my mom I was going to adopt my kids even if I could have my own.  But my husband and I were not ready to explore adoption yet.  I assumed we would have a child or two on our own and then prayerfully consider adoption.  Anyway, my husband and I had no success of conceiving on our own.  Then we went through a rough period of time financially, we had relocated away from our families for his job, and with me battling depression which was later diagnosed as Bipolar and other trials which I might share later on if I feel the Lord leads me to.  During this time I was diagnosed with PCOS around the age of 20.  All 5 months of fertility treatments failed in 2005, a year later a private adoption failed in 2006, and eventually we decided we just needed a break.  During this break we found out that the Pastor of the church I attended as a teenager with my family was a Pastor at a church nearby.  We went and visited that church and immediate felt that we were exactly where God wanted us to be, where we needed to be.  Since that time I have been healed completely from bipolar and our financial situation is great.  Then God used my mom and close friends of ours to plant seeds in us to become foster parents.  We wanted children and they needed parents, it seemed that it would be a great way to make a difference in the life of a child until God’s timing for us to be forever parents.  It was no easy journey to become a foster parent nor easy to be a foster parent, and God truly blessed us along the way (I will share stories along the way).  We are now parents to our daughters, Olivia who turned 6 in July and Kanda who turned 8 in July.  We were blessed to be able to adopt our two daughters in July this past year.  Kanda’s adoption was July 18th and Olivia’s was July 24th.  As I look back over my life all the moments that I thought were imperfect at the time were God’s PERFECT will and his PERFECT timing.  And deep inside of me is embedded a perfectionist.  However, I’m learning that all the moments I stress out about making PERFECT and girls’ moments that make it seem imperfect at the time and different from what I envisioned it, is actually making PERFECT memories.  I know as I get older these PERFECTLY IMPERFECT moments will be the source of my laughter.  I can’t wait to grow old with my husband, sit on our porch in our rocking chairs, with my gray hair blowing in the wind, and for us to just sit and laugh about how PERFECT these moments really were.