Good Morning Texas’ Paige McCoy Smith, tells us why she coined the phrase The “Not-So-Perfect Parent”, and why she wants you to make this New Year’s resolution — be imperfect.
The origin of the “Not-So-Perfect Parent” is actually a sadly inspiring story about a real-life event. I had just given birth to my first-born child, now 15. It was mid-afternoon and I was still in my pajamas. As I nursed my darling son, my attention wandered to the television. As if to mock me, there stood one of those perfect “can-do” women. You know the type; she was touting her herbal honey made with fresh picked herbs from her organically grown garden. I scoffed at her audacity, but the breaking point came when I watched her don beekeeper gear and collect honey from beehives. I am not making this up!
I was inspired at that moment to bring some sanity and rational expectations into the lives of real parents. Our club of Not-So-Perfect parents is a diverse group, but what connects us is that we are the caregivers who love our children and try to maintain sanity in an insane world.
The moment my child was born I was thrust into the comparison game. It starts with those “infant report cards” at the pediatrician’s visits and continues on to your child’s class rank in high school, athletic ability, college acceptance…and the list goes on and on.
Striving for perfection does not bring you closer to your kids; it can even serve as a wedge between you and your children. Can they ever feel good about themselves if they are taught that anything less than perfect is … well… not good enough?
So, this year, I am resolved to stay imperfect. That doesn’t mean I won’t try to be on time for carpool, or try a new home cooked recipe, or try to be more patient. It just means I will be snuggling up to the concept of doing the best I can.
Quips & Quotes
“No one is perfect…that’s why pencils have erasers.” –Unknown
“Have no fear of perfection — you’ll never reach it.” -Salvador Dali
“When nobody around you seems to measure up, it’s time to check your yardstick.” -Bill Lemley
“I am careful not to confuse excellence with perfection. Excellence, I can reach for; perfection is God’s business.” -Michael J. Fox