In all comparison I've ever seen, the good usually comes before the bad. The Good, The Bad, & The Ugly. Pros & Cons. Plus & Minus. Perhaps it's just because it rolls off the tongue easier that way, but I have no real knowledge as to why this is. Today, I break with tradition. I am putting the bad, the ugly, the cons, the minuses FIRST.
My reasoning is two-fold. To begin with, I am honestly not comfortable with bragging. I never want to come across as that person whose life or circumstances are perfect. I have trouble accepting compliments without justifying how the "compliment-able" came to be--(compliment) that shirt looks LOVELY on you!, (me) oh thanks--just an old Walmart buy. So for me to have placed my talents and other "braggable" things first, would have made me feel very uncomfortable. My other reason: I'm just in a negative mood and have been for quite some time, so it's just naturally easier to be hard on myself and post my imperfections than to do the opposite.
So...there you have it. I am imperfect. And quite a bit so at that. Actually, I'll go one step further and even admit that most of the time, I plain don't like myself. As this portion of my case study states, I am going to delve deep into what it is that I just can't stand about myself. My imperfection (from the inside looking out mind you) laid out for all the world to see...
#1. I am a terribly jealous person and have been even more so lately. I hate it. I know it is a sin to be envious because you aren't happy and content with the wonderous work God made in you as a person. I hate carrying around this cross of jealousy. I have dumped it many times, but like a sick addiction, I just pick up another along the way. It always seems that no matter what I do, what I say, what I wear...well...there is always somebody popping up that makes me just want to be them. I wish I lived in their neighborhood. I wish I had her body, her face, her athletic prowess. I wish my kids aced every academic and athletic thing they are faced with just like her kids do. I wish my husband was as outgoing and talkative as hers. I wish I could just let go and let God like she does. I wish I could be as good a mother as she is. I wish I could sing like her. I wish I could... I could go on, but I'll stop here.
#2. I struggle daily with living for the moment that God has me in right here and right now. I long for the past or dream of the future...and too much so. In August 2005, Steve left for a year unaccompanied in Camp Casey, Korea (I shall hereout refer to this period as our first deployment, because even though he wasn't in a war zone, he was gone for a year, in a not-so-safe place, and I had less support from the Army at that time than in later "real" deployments.) It may sound horrible at first, but that year would have been the BEST of my adult life thus far had Steve just been with me. I had never felt better about myself--inside and out-- than during that year. I was in the best health of my life. I had the "perfect" job for me and I loved it. I was confident in my role as a mother. I just felt truly GOOD. So I long to have that back, but I know I can never relive any part of my past. Sadly, I am also constantly dreaming of the future. About where we will live. About how our kids will be. About travels, and plans, and projects. And you know what...NOTHING turns out the way I dream it will be. It's a waste of time.
#3. I'm not a pretty girl. I struggle with my weight daily. I am hardly ever happy with how I look, even if the only people seeing me that day are my husband and kids. I long to be one of "those" women who, without doing hair or makeup, just look good. A nice body that can be maintained somewhat easily with enjoyable exercise and good wholesome food yet allowing for the occassional treat. A face with skin so smooth and features so well proportioned that makeup would only mar it and any hair style, even short and sassy, would look divine on them. I'm not one of those. I kid not when I tell you that 10 years ago, I was referred to three times in one week as a member of the male of our species--once I even had my nicely cropped hair done neatly and makeup on. Let it go, I know. But it hurt and it hurt deeply and I will never forget how ugly I felt after that week.
#4. I have a TERRIBLE temper. Say a prayer of thanksgiving now that most of you have never seen and will never see that side of me. It's sad really, for it is those closest to my heart that have seen me literally blow up. I'm ashamed of that. I scream at my kids and lose my temper over juice spilled on the carpet, and then I'll turn around and see their sad little faces and know how I've hurt them. No matter how many times I apologize and no matter how heart-felt those apologies are, I cannot take those words said in anger back. But oh...how I wish I could.
#5. I am lazy. You know those people that have to have a fire lit under them to get them to do anything? I hate to admit it, but I am one of them. When it comes to doing work of any sort--paid or unpaid, home or away--unless I WANT to do it or it MUST be done, I will put it off. I look at my dad and his work ethic and those of his generation and those before him and I am amazed. He can't sit still. It's not in his nature. He WANTS something to do every day. He'd go crazy without work. As much as I love history, I would never have survived in the days of old when, for example, cooking wasn't a hobby one took up because they were a foodie, but because it MUST be done to feed your family of 12...oh...and it was done over a wood or coal stove with ingredients you grew or raised yourself and canned and preserved yourself, and...well... I'd have been screwed.
There are many more smaller, trivial things about myself that I don't like, that are imperfections, but these five emcompass the majority.
Please read Part III when I post it, because for every action there is an equal and opposite reaction. Don't walk away from this post feeling like you need to run to my home, or call me, or email because I need encouraged. I'm fine. I'll be okay. I needed to write this.
It's freeing in a way because our society just seems to glorify "perfect lives" when you know what--THEY DON'T EXIST! And for me, personally, to go one step beyond just admitting "I am not perfect," and saying what it is about me that makes me scarred and marred...I feel better already. See you at Part III...