settling

A few weeks back, Dr. R introduced me to the concept of "good enough parenting". Striving to be the "perfect" parent, he suggested, is nothing more than an exercise in futility. There is no such thing and the pursuit of which only leads to guilt, guilt, guilt, and more guilt. Topped off with an extra large scoop of stress and a little guilt cherry on top. Instead, he proposed, work to be good enough.

Sounds easy enough. Should be no problem to back off on the expectations, right? Just dial 'em down a notch. Relax a little. Take off the pressure. Good enough is good enough. Simple concept.

Except that it's not. Reconciling myself to being "good" when I could be "better"; to being "enough" when I could be "more" has become my newest obsession. Which, I'm fairly certain, is not at all what the good Dr. intended.

My childhood was filled with lessons about striving for more. Giving my all. "Anything worth doing is worth doing right." Nature or nurture, I took those admonitions to heart and somewhere along the line became a creature given to extremes. I'm "freezing" or "roasting"; never just cool or warm. I think, speak, and write in ALL CAPS WITH EXCLAMATION POINTS AT THE END OF EVERY SENTENCE!!! My initial impression is either blackest black or whitest white.

This notion of settling is not settling well. I keep reminding myself that this is a journey towards balance. Towards the middle. Towards harmony. Towards peace. "Everything in moderation," my grandfather was fond of admonishing us. Of course, he always tagged on "...especially moderation." What the crap is a girl suppose to walk away from that with?


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