Beautifully flawed

Number 1 friend dropped round a large bunch of tulips the other day, as a gesture of thanks. They were beautiful and I knew the exact jug that would show off their full potential. It was the jug with a chip on one side. No problem, I thought, whilst arranging them with as much love and attention as the thought that had gone into the purchase, I can just sit the chipped side of the jug so that it isn’t on show.

They looked gorgeous and every time I walked into the room, they filled me with happiness. I thought about how well the jug fitted in with my cushions and the cheap rug that I had bought for a carpet when a mysterious stain had appeared from nowhere and had needed an emergency cover up a few months before. I didn’t think about the chip and I didn’t think about the stain, as both were hidden from my view.

Our house is full to the brim. It is bursting with people and animals. It is overflowing with make-up brushes and throws. Every sheet seems to own the reminder of a nose bleed from when my daughters were small and every duvet cover at the moment has circles of fur, where much loved molting cats snuggle in – especially when the heating stops working, which recently, on the coldest days, it has been prone to do. These are the days when we must hunker down with a paper and a bottle of wine in front of the gas fire in the sitting room, which has started to become temperamental. Yet candles still have the ability to save even the grimmest, most unlucky of days and make you feel that things will somehow be ok.

This house is full of cracks and that is why I love it. That is why I feel at home. I don’t crave perfection. I relish imperfection. Maybe I see fuck-ups as a challenge and a distraction from routine. When things go wrong, there is the opportunity to put them right. In fact, to make them better than they even were before. Humans need fuck-ups. Fuck-ups rally the troops and give everyone a sense of community.

Perfection must surely make you anxious. Having to sustain perfection must be like never reaching the top of a mountain, but having the summit constantly in your sights. I don’t care if my children fuck-up; I did. Of course, I want them to do their very best and I want them to feel fulfilled, but the only way to achieve this is with knock backs, with things going wrong, with cracks. Because even with these cracks, they will still be fabulous. Even with all our human imperfections, we can shine. We can hide the cracks and we can mend them, but ultimately they make us beautifully flawed and most importantly, they are the making of us.

25 thoughts on “Beautifully flawed”

  1. Oh I LOVE this post! I couldn’t agree more, I used to strive for perfection and it was anxiety producing and left me so unhappy! Now I embrace all my imperfections and even love them! My home is full of chaos, and love, with 3 cats, and now 3 dogs, 3 kids and too many bunnies to count it is never dull around here. It makes me happy to know my kids are growing up with this kind of home. My childhood home was always so clean and I love that I have been able to let that go. Yes I adore pretty things, but what good are they if they don’t make us happy! #mg

      1. Congratulations this is my favourite post on #mg this week! Feel free to stop by and grab the Featured Writers Badge xx

  2. I love this! There’s such joy in the things you own that have memories attached to them rather than shiny new things with no soul that are perfect. I love your jug!

  3. Well said. I think perfectionists are also control freaks. I’m neither of those. I’m not perfect. My kids are not perfect. My husband isn’t perfect. But our family fits together. Great post. #dreamteam

  4. What a great post! As two moms who grew up trying to attain the ‘perfect’ gene, this is so welcomed to see and read. We are doing our very best to let our girls know how silly that ‘P’ word is… you did a great job here. #livingfearlesslyauthentic #mg xo

  5. This is stunning (as always Alison). I know exactly what you mean. Our house is filled with things that all have their little inperfections. I remember buying a beautiful, and expensive by our standards, planter for in the garden last summer. Within 10 minutes of us getting it into position, the hubby dropped something onto it and took a big chip out of it. We just took it to be the pot’s initiation ceremony into our slightly chaotic household. Now it fits in with the rest of us. Now it has character! Thank you for sharing this and I love the powerful meaning behind it all. #DreamTeam x

    1. Lovely comments, Dawn and a lovely story about your planter. (Did you shout at your hubby, before you embraced its new character?!) x

  6. Beautiful post. I gave up on perfection long ago. My house is lived in and it shows. In fact I feel quite uncomfortable in spotlessly clean houses with no flaws. Your tulips look fantastic in that jug

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