​My kids forced me to stop being a perfectionist

Author: Stacey Nee

My name is Stacey and I’m a recovering perfectionist.

Through most of my life, I had my eye squarely on the prize...of perfection. I got excellent grades in school. I rarely left the house without my hair done and makeup applied just right. I worked out at least five days a week. My house was clean. Oh, it was so very clean. I ate healthy, yummy, well-prepared meals. I loved to organize. I mean LOVED to organize.

Then, I had children.

You see, perfectionists like perfection. It turns out kids don’t allow perfection.

I have to wonder what people who didn’t know me before children might say if I mentioned my former perfectionist years. “But, your house?,” they’d ponder. “Didn’t you show up to work with yogurt...or was it boogers?...all over your pants the other day?” they’d ask. “I’ve seen your desk,” or “Your minivan says otherwise,” they’d giggle.

The truth is the first year or so of being a mom I did a pretty good job of hanging on to my perfectionism. Then, she started to walk (the little bugger) and it got harder. When number two came, it hit the fan.

That has been HARD. You see, perfectionists like perfection. It turns out kids don’t allow perfection.

But, when I’m in a good mood (or a half a glass of wine in), I can honestly tell you it’s been a blessing - and I don’t use that word freely.

There are only so many hours in the day and there are way too many things that I’m supposed to get done in 24 hours. What being the mom of these two little monkeys has taught me is that I have to prioritize and it’s my relationships, my people, and my love for them that matter most.

So, we moved into the new place five months ago and half the rooms still need to be painted. I haven’t exercised in over four years and I’m feeling fancy if I show up to work with a little blush and mascara. And, holy moses, my kitchen floors are disgusting. BUT, damn if we didn’t have a pretty good little snow day today, including hot cocoa and movies snuggling on the couch. Tomorrow, it’s a dance party then pizza with some of our favorite people on the planet.

Screw perfection. This is life with little kids and it’s perfectly wonderful (you know...most days).

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