When you fall apart, the pieces never fit back perfectly again, do they? There are cracks, and chinks, and little holes in your heart where you can see straight through to your soul. Those holes and flaws let the light of love in, and your own light radiate, for all the world to see – but only if you don’t mind exposing your cracks.
There are cracks, and then there are crevices.
I wrote a little while ago about how it is possible to feel half broken, half whole – feels like the fissures have gotten bigger.
Lately I’ve been falling apart, cracking under stress and pressure and the sheer busyness of life (read yelling too much, getting overly anxious, feeling like it’s all too much and feeling hugely guilty about it) – all the while sending tips out into cyberspace about finding your flow, acting like a tree and growing flexible and strong – you don’t crack when you are grounded and bend in the breeze like a tree, and there’s nothing that can crack the flow of water, or any liquid, or indeed life itself. Damning things up simply holds back the inevitable flow (mostly of frustration lately).
My sister says (in the nicest possible way) that I need to make my blog more authoritative, that you, dear readers, wants solutions from the lessons I’ve learned more than the muck of the mess I’m in the midst of. A coach who may yet help me turn a fledgling blog into a business one day, reckons I have a genuine voice of experience (especially around infertility, adoption, loss and gain) that offers real value to others.
Me I just see vulnerability. Most of the time.
With my ‘big’ girl turning 10, I’ve been thinking, as I always do, of her birth mother in China – I wonder whether a decade feels differently to her than it does to me.
I missed out on the first 12 months and 29 days with our Miss Yin, but then she has missed so much more. Have I done a ‘good enough’ job with the precious days, months and years I’ve had?
And I feel like I’m missing (read squandering) moments, memories, in the rush and stress of life, my over-reactions to it and the mother guilt that is cracking me up (and it’s not funny), exposing my once broken heart with its chipped pieces that have been stuck back together and the scar tissue that has covered all but the last slivers of cracks since Miss Yin came into our lives and I started to heal.
I’m writing this on the sunny morning of Miss Yin’s birthday when I’m supposed to be at work, only I woke up feeling sick to the stomach. Sick of fights, yelling, nothing running smoothly, simply not having (or making enough) time to just BE with the kids, to appreciate them more.
Feeling bad that I’m parenting ‘someone else’s children’ and not doing it well enough, not even loving it enough.
I think I’m finally cracking under the pressure of mother guilt and so I’m declaring ‘enough is enough’ (well I’ve declared this before, but this time it feels really serious). Enough of feeling bad, enough of feeling NOT ENOUGH.
Abracadabra, Alakazam, piss the bloody hell off – Mother Guilt be gone. Can it be that easy?
I recently came across this great quote.
Good enough is the new perfect, Becky Beaupre Gillispie
Perfection is, as another quote goes, over-rated. Mother guilt feeds on imperfection, but only if we let it keep making a meal of our confidence, our joy. I’m not sure about you, but I know I need to cut myself some slack.
And on balance, while I could definitely be better (in part by acting like a tree, finding my flow and turning my To-do list into a To-be list) I am BEING ENOUGH for my kids and myself.
Being an adoptive mum makes me neither more nor less, simply ENOUGH.
Being an adoptive mum means I’m grateful, but I shouldn’t shoulder a debt of gratitude. Being thankful is ENOUGH.
Good enough is about recognising that life is practiced rather than perfected and that is ENOUGH.
I’m reclaiming ENOUGH as a mature Mum to two beautiful kids (now aged 10 and 3), and as a woman who is a mother, wife, daughter, sister, aunt, friend, worker, blogger, writer etc. and doing the best I can.
I urge you – all of you self-depreciating, angst-ridden, perfectionist, Super-mums out there (you know who you are) to join me in this sentiment – it may be great to do better, be better, but it’s OK to be good enough.
Will you join me?
Linking up with the lovely Grace for FYBF.