When I wake up in the morning, one of the first things I do is look in the mirror.
I stare at the person looking back and start searching.
Every morning, without fail, I’ll find something that needs to be improved. Something that needs picking, or something that shows that I’m not perfect.
I make a mental note that I need my hair doing soon, pluck out the rogue eyebrow hairs and scrub my face to start another day.
Let’s not get started about the internal turmoil of stepping onto the scales in the morning when you know what that not so magical 8 ball will say.
I step into the shower and think about the day ahead, I think about the things I need to juggle and start planning:
I think about what juggler’s ball I’ll need to drop today in order to make it work.
Which will it be today?
- Be a great mum
- Be good at my job
- Keep my house clean/tidy
- Exercise the amount I’m supposed to
- Eat healthily
- Feel awake and energised (aka, getting enough sleep)
I’ve long since lost the ridiculous notion that I can have it all.
Instead, I opt to be good at a handful of things. I can’t and don’t aim to be perfect. I can fight as much as I can, but I’ll never reach it.
If I wanted to do everything on my list or even more than a handful then I can’t do them all with the same highlander gusto.
What gets put on hold?
Most days, I’m sad to say that being a great mum is put on hold while I go to work.
As a consequence, I also can’t exercise the amount I’m supposed to as my desk job and half hour lunch break just don’t allow it.
So it turns out that being a mum is like an epic game of the Crystal Maze.
My Crystal Maze
I run from room to room trying to solve the next puzzle, with the zones of: Parenting, Health, Home and Work.
Sometimes I get locked in.
Sometimes I even get a few crystals along the way.
But the thing is, the game is really about the end point. The crystal dome. Sure, that’s the boring bit that doesn’t involve other people piping in with their input on what you’re doing wrong, but it is the aim.
It’s not about making one zone work really well. It’s about getting by. Getting enough crystals from all of the zones combined for the grand finale that we call life and happiness.
We all know what happens when you try and use up every second in a room reaching for an unattainable crystal. You’re out of the whole game unless you give up something else.
So no, I’m not perfect and I play it safe. But I am trying my best in each zone.
I step out of the shower, put on my war paint and do the best job I can for the day ahead.
Sure, I can’t have it all – I don’t want to as the cost is too high. What I can have is acceptance.
I’m not perfect and that’s fine.