Finding the Courage to be Average
I’ve said it before, I’ll say it again, “Hi. My name is Kim and I’m a Recovering Perfectionist.”
If you aren’t a Recovering Perfectionist, you may think that I am making light of a very serious problem, alcoholism. But if you are a Recovering Perfectionist, then you know: there is nothing funny about obsessively striving for perfection, it is crippling.
I have this quote by Anne Lamott (literally) written on my bathroom wall:
“Perfectionism is the voice of the oppressor. The enemy of the people. It will keep you insane your whole life.” -Anne Lamott, Bird by Bird
Today I am working up the courage just to be average.
December 1 of last year I was told, “I don’t love you anymore.” I spent the next three months in a race to become lovable. I failed.
I thought that if I could just become more of me, a better version of me, a more enthusiastic me, a prettier me, a smarter me, a hundred times more fantastic me — then I would be loved again. But that’s not how it works.
It’s not that I’m not fantastic enough — for I know that I am more fantastic than he will ever find again (I can only say that with confidence after 3 months of beloved women friends whispering their love to me) — but because I am not able to fill the void. He has a few missing pieces, and no matter how much I want to be or how hard I try to be, I cannot be those missing pieces.
You have not heard from me for a week because I have been laying low, just trying to make it from one day to the next, limping along with my broken heart. And then, when The He finally left for good, I spent a day and a half in bed, in darkness, in silence, in a cocoon of my own making. Today I have emerged and I have a new purpose. Today I have decided to dare to be average.
I tend to make a lot of declarations on this blog, and I fail to live up to most of them. I have to wonder, will I be able to live up to this one?