Just the right amount of perfect
Her pictures portray just the right amount of perfection. Sun kissed beauty that tells of freedom and fun. The wind blowing around highlights masterful brush strokes. Warm, friendly and loveable. The image of perfection. Can you identify with it? Oh how I wish this manuscript of beauty and perfection was the reality for all. I love to see well put together and got it together women. They give me hope, hope that maybe one day I will get off the yoyo that bounces from too much to not enough and finally land on balance. So while this evasive equilibrium continues to evade me I’ll tell you a little story.
What is the right amount of perfect?
Entering into my teens I think I may have closely passed for the bride of Freddie Kruger (recovering horror movie buff J) . I was deeply intrigued by all things unorthodox. Wanting desperately to push the boundary just a little. I was a raw form of passion. Volatile and unstable sure! But unique and beautiful too. A tasteful horror of misunderstood individuality. Never picture perfect but liberated. And this was acceptable! I was ok with not fitting in or being noticed. But I turned fourteen and overnight my paradigm shifted. I suddenly noticed the creaks and cracks that were my persona. I etched at these bent corners. Fashioning a new being that looked a lot more like the people around. Out of movies and books I lifted beliefs that were standardised and ok. I borrowed opinions that allowed me a voice in the social discourse. A carbon copy of another carbon copy.
Fitting in has always been the order of the day. To be different is sometimes to be shunned and outcast. The struggle for a sound female identity has been one evolving over the years. Fighting the good fight to break stereotypes and establish individuality. Yet in a time we are “free to be” we are still chasing after being everyone else but ourselves. I have faced many a challenge in the few but intense years I have been in existence, but none resounds more soundly than this one “will I ever be enough”. Sitting with friends and sometimes strangers we have retold story after story of how experience has subtly arm twisted each of us into changing. Too emotional, too loud, too quiet too you. How does one contend with that? If the opposite of loud is quiet and both are too much then what do you do?
The BEAUTY that is you
“Who is this who looks down like the dawn, beautiful as the moon, bright as the sun, awesome as an army with banners?
Songs of Solomon 6:10
What a way for a woman to be described. On the rare occasion that I can scrape myself out of bed early enough for a run, I have had the divine pleasure of catching the sunrise. A deep mix of orange and yellow floods the horizon. The light flickers and dances on the darkness, pushing it out gradually and making way for splendour. Light takes up space and suddenly there’s clarity. I can see a long distance away. The use of nature to describe the uniqueness and beauty that is a woman is outstanding. The dawn is unthreatened by the sunset, the moon in all its glory is not working tirelessly all night to be the sun. Each is wholly beautiful in its identity and function. Ever think what it would be like if the moon tried to assume the sun’s role and purpose, or if on an evening walk, dawn suddenly decided to assume the place of the sunset. Genesis says, when God was done with creation, He looked upon it and stated that it was good. My analogy will not compare, but perhaps it will help express this sentiment a little more. After working on a meal, you set up the table and plate it. You look down at your creation and your heart is full, you look at your handy work and with no doubt have the satisfaction that it is good. Multiply that feeling of satisfaction by infinity and there you have it. The Creator of all the universe made you, looked upon you and fully satisfied said YOU are good.
You in all your passion, emotion and silence are good. There will never be another like you and there never was before. Despite what the world or anyone else thinks and says you are not too much, you are not too little and you will always be enough.
“Our deepest fear is not that we are inadequate. Our deepest fear is that we are powerful beyond measure. It is our light, not our darkness that most frightens us. We ask ourselves, Who am I to be brilliant, gorgeous, talented, fabulous? Actually, who are you not to be? You are a child of God. Your playing small does not serve the world. There is nothing enlightened about shrinking so that other people won’t feel insecure around you. We are all meant to shine, as children do. We were born to make manifest the glory of God that is within us. It’s not just in some of us; it’s in everyone. And as we let our own light shine, we unconsciously give other people permission to do the same. As we are liberated from our own fear, our presence automatically liberates others.”
– Marianne Williamson
Our ability to embrace who we are allows those around us the freedom to be themselves as well. I was an only child for the greater part of my life. I was my awesome mother’s end all and be all. The world revolved around me. Haha joyous living! However, over the years I came to realize that the more I tried to be someone else the less I was able to live and the more crippling I was to my mother. I had to find my feet and spread my wings to allow her to do the same. For as long as I was the baby, foul staggering and unstable, she had to be the momma that followed behind me and made sure I didn’t bruise my tush. The same applies to the people around us, the more we are who we are not, the less those around us have the freedom to be who they are. The only balance to this yoyo is embracing who you are. Now, it’s not easy breaking out of a mould and moving out of a comfort zone, but freedom and balance will cost us something of you. Are you willing to lay down the “fit in” mentality to embrace YOU?
This is an adventure. Along the way you will discover secret truths and treasures deeply buried. You will be able to walk arm in arm with the One that has known you better and longer than even you have known yourself.
I hope you take the leap!
By Marla Chanetsa