We are told, in general, not to expect perfection. If someone promises it they’re either selling something or deluding themselves. We conflate idealism with naïveté and pessimism with ‘just being realistic’. But to deny the existence of perfection is to deny the evidence of our own lives. Yes, re-read that a few times as it’s really a beautiful statement!
In Chuck Palahniuk’s Fight Club, Tyler Durden spends hours dragging driftwood logs into position on a lonely beach.
“What Tyler had created was the shadow of a giant hand. Only now the fingers were long and the thumb was too short, but he said how at exactly four-thirty the hand was perfect. The giant shadow hand was perfect for one minute, and for one perfect minute, Tyler had sat in the palm of a perfection he’d created himself. One minute was enough, Tyler said, a person had to work hard for it, but a minute of perfection was worth the effort. A moment was the most you could ever expect from perfection.”
The most you can expect from perfection is that it lasts just one moment. And the most you can expect from a moment is that it be perfect. I have experienced these moments that get burned in my brain. The smells, the emotions, the sounds and the deep sweetness that stirs the soul. As if the universe is reminding me that what I am doing matters, especially at that moment, and what I have been working towards is perfect even if for just one moment.
What I have realized more and more through my experiences is that the moments of perfection are exquisite and if my life were to have those moments constantly they would never be as rich and as sweet.
As women I feel that we are all trying to reach this place of perfection that is a perceived perception that doesn’t really exist. There is no such thing as being perfect for it is in our imperfections that make us perfect. I meet women through my company and through our #selflovemovement that are moved to tears by the idea of practicing more self-love, of feeling that that are beautiful and feeling supported. Many women comment that they are in therapy for this exact thing, to cultivate more self-love. Another woman commented to me, “wouldn’t we all love to go back to that very first moment when we said we wished we were more in shape, or healthier, or whatever that first moment we had the thought that seems to have tormented us through our lives.”
I hope we can all find ways to be softer with ourselves, be gentler, see the perfection in ourselves that isn’t perfect and that perfect imperfection makes us uniquely beautiful. I hope that as a society we can let go of the idea of being perfect and letting go of that stereotype so that our daughters and the next generations won’t be held in the pain and inner torment of self-criticism that many of us carry and instead can look in the mirror and see their true beauty and the light within. Let’s all share our beautiful, radiant self with the world so that others will feel that they can do the same!