It's not about the donuts

When I throw a party or prepare something special for my friends and family I want it to be right. I want it to be seamless and impressive. I want it to be perfect.  

And guess what? It never is. 

I've made plenty of things that were slightly under baked, over seasoned, or room temp by the time my guests ate. 

I've forgotten to light the candles on tables, left the flowers in the garage, and forgotten to sweep the bathroom floor a countless number of times. 

I've forgotten and been ashamed by my less than perfect performance. 

Oh, and I've made the mistake of attempting homemade donuts. All in the name of winning approval. 


Can I let you in on a little secret? It isn't about the homemade donuts. 

It's startling how invasive the thoughts of "perfection" and "performance" are. Many of us are wired to achieve and to present ourselves in a manner that wins the approval and appreciation of others. We have a deeply rooted need to feel valued, and sometimes we think that equates to being successful. 

I want a life that sizzles and pops and makes me laugh out loud. And I don't want to get to the end, or to tomorrow, even, and realize that my life is a collection of meetings and pop cans and errands and receipts and dirty dishes. I want to eat cold tangerines and sing out loud in the car with the windows open and wear pink shoes and stay up all night laughing and paint my walls the exact color of the sky right now. I want to sleep hard on clean white sheets and throw parties and eat ripe tomatoes and read books so good they make me jump up and down, and I want my everyday to make God belly laugh, glad that he gave life to someone who loves the gift.  - SN

Maybe you and I need a reminder that it's not always about the dishes. It isn't always about getting rid of cellulite or shrinking our thighs. It isn't about whether or not you made a Pinterest worthy pie. It isn't about the bathroom you forgot to sweep before your guests showed up. 

All of our striving gets us "closer" to an unattainable attribute and further away from the rich and brilliant moments within our messy lives. Maybe it's time to question our motives and redirect our focus. 

 Life is not about shrinking into the molds we think we should fit in. 

It's important that I start getting this right - not everything in my life, but the things that matter. These are some of the questions I've thought a lot about lately:

When is the last time you went swimming with your kids or grandkids and instead of dwelling on what people might think about your body, you just enjoyed it? When it the last time you left dishes in the sink or left things unfinished because your spouse and kids initiated a family movie night? Can you remember a time lately when you did something solely because you enjoy it rather than because you wanted to impress or win others over?

My dear friends, it's okay to buy donuts from the store.

Wear your bathing suit and join your kids.

Clean what you can, when you can, however well you can. 

Forget perfection so you don't miss the moments that actually matter. 

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