Friday, February 15, 2008

Six words of life

I just read this article which got me thinking about how I would sum up my life. This is actually harder than I thought it would be, but strangely enough it puts life in real perspective.

Lousy housekeeper, great mom, wife and teacher.


Striving for absolute perfection and failing.

OR (if that last one was a little too depressing for you)

Acknowledging massive imperfections, still having fun.

This is actually quite an interesting experience - the three of you who occasionally read my blog should try it. 

But on the topic of perfection, I keep hearing news reports and feel that I need to put my two cents in on it.  This article is well written but I thought I'd explain and add my never so humble opinion.  Basically, what it comes down to is that prescriptions for anti-depressants 
in the state of Utah are higher than any other and some people think it is because we can't let go with alcohol (WHATEVER!  Hands down one of the most ridiculous ideas I've heard of).  They also think that our religion is too strenuous, asks too much of us, yadda, yadda, blah, blah, blah.  Excuses.

Here's my theory - we, as LDS people, often feel that we need to be perfect.  We can't be perfect because we are HUMAN.   I have seen several women specifically, but men fit in too, who feel inundated with tasks, responsibilities and 8 million different things that for some reason we feel we have to do well and in absolute perfection everyday.  Basically, we have a perfectionist complex.

I have a magnificent husband to met me in one of these states and could see that depression slipped into my life when I didn't have a gourmet meal for dinner, laundry caught up, straight A's, whatever project was the new it thing in the neighborhood, couldn't get in 15 minutes of scripture study individually as well as with him, didn't pray as much as I should, 
etc.  He told me that he didn't marry me because I was perfect, he didn't want me to be perfect, it was impossible for me to be perfect, so why the heck was I still beating myself up over something that isn't attainable?  

Since then I have realized that I have an amazing spouse given to me 
by an amazing Heavenly Father to help me realize that the effort is worth it, and that as long as I was moving forward instead of backward or standing still, I was doing the best I could.  

So all you lovely people in the state of Utah, I would encourage you to
 adopt the new motto of O be wise, what can I say more?  Do what you can with what you've got and if it didn't work out, try again next time.  I promise, life is more enjoyable when you can enjoy it.

1 comment:

Harmony said...

Six words, huh. I'll have to think about that one. I like your last one best.

As for the whole perfectionism thing, my two cents worth is too long for this forum. Suffice it to say that I've spent almost half my life coming to my own terms with it. I don't believe that the incidence of depression is any higher in Utah than elsewhere, or that anti-depressant use is higher because "we can't let go with alcohol." On the other hand, I wouldn't be surprised if there is a higher percentage of depression sufferers outside of Utah who could be helped by anti-depressants but cope and self-medicate with alcohol and/or other substances instead.