Thursday, December 10, 2009

PostHeaderIcon Jenn: Your Perfect is not the same as Everyone's else's Perfect

This Sunday, a group of the "girls" and I went on the Holiday House Tour. This was our 3rd or 4th time doing it together. It is a lot of fun. We get to walk through other people's homes and get great ideas or just see beautiful houses. Afterwards we go to lunch and talk about the houses, the decorating or just BS and catch up over a glass of wine and a nice meal. A whole day without kids or spouses. A time out in the busiest time of the year.

All the houses are "historical." Some more historical than others. My favorite was built in 1780 and held a lot of the original charm. It was decorated beautifully. I spoke to the owner, found out where she bought her furniture and put in on my list of places to go. There were 5 houses on the tour this year. The first three we visited were stunning. Just beautifully done, decorated tastefully and clutter free. All three happened to be on the water. Beautiful water views, just charming. The fourth house we went to, not so much. Stuff everywhere, clutter everywhere, cramped and small and uncomfortable. One of the girls made it through the first floor and went out. I made it through the first floor, up to the second and then out I went. it was too much for me. While standing outside waiting for the rest of the group, I said to my friend, I don't understand why someone puts their house on the tour when it looks like this. I will not do it (yes, the historical society has already approached me) until my house is perfect. She gave me the greatest answer and one I had never really thought about. "Everyone's perfect is different." The last house was worse, I couldn't wait to get out.

My perfect is not over-the-top. It is just clean, clutter free, nicely decorated. Not everything in my house is perfect, and sometimes it is more perfect than others. If I know you are coming, then yes, the candles are lit, the bathroom is freshly scrubbed, there might even be fresh flowers. If you stop by and surprise me, there might be dishes in the sink or an unmade bed. But if I knew the whole town was coming, it would be freshly painted, perfectly placed decorations and absolutely spotless without a single dust particle in sight. How people can let someone in their home - in fact, hundreds of someone's - and have dust and clutter and stuff everywhere was mind boggling to me. But now I understand, that everyone's perfect is different, I am going to work on this. On not letting my perfect get in my way, stress me out or cause me to freak out at my kids when things are not just so. As much as I love Christmas, it brings with it a lot of stuff. Decorations everywhere, surfaces covered in Santas and reindeer. Today I was complaining about a Christmas display my daughter put up. It was just too much for me. I wanted desperately to rip it apart. But so far, there it sits, and I am going to try to live with it. Because everyone's perfect is different and my daughter thinks her Christmas town is perfect - so I will too.


Jamie said...

You know, I react like that sometimes too. My husband tells me I have really high expectations and a lot of times I press them onto others. I too struggle with just letting it go and not letting the stress overwhelm me.

I think it is awesome that you and your girlfriends take the time out to do this each year, what a wonderful holiday tradition. Merry SITSmas.

Confessions From A Working Mom said...

What a great post-- you are right, as OCD as I am, I need to realize that not everybody is the same way. While I obsess over every dust bunny and smudge on the windows, others do not. Thanks for the reminder to let go!


Beth P. said...

It is so hard to always keep in mind that what we think or may do is always going to be different than what someone else may think or do. Its incredible, I feel like I'd be the same thing you were thinking about it, but they are not us, obviously!

Please stop by. Either one or both of you are tagged to do the Christmas Meme on my blog! :-)

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