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Perfection versus Reality
I feel a million miles away from everyone on earth. I never knew what real love was, or how to trust, to communicate. I grew up amidst chaos of family tension and aggression, and anger aimed at the wrong people.. I felt their pain, literally, gripping my chest, my heart, my lungs...I would escape seeing those I love in pain and anguish by running. I would run outside and keep running until I could hear only silence. I fought to keep myself safe. I tried to stay outside all day, riding my bike through the hills behind our house and living in an imaginary world that was as beautiful as I wanted it to be. Where does this leave me now, grown up, intermingling with the billions of people on my planet? Hmm... well, I'm still a million miles away.
I believe my sensitivity to the emotions surrounding my formative years set me up for constant disappointment. Because I would escape by creating those heavenly havens, those sanctuary's of imaginary peace and perfection, I find this modern world is heavy. I feel the weight of it so strongly. I still cannot trust, I still cannot shrug off the cloak of guilt, somehow feeling that every bad thing that happens in life is somehow my fault. That I should have done better, tried harder, been there faster, thought of it sooner... It is IMPOSSIBLE for me to ever live up to my own standards. Every day. Somehow I cannot shrug this 'inventory' in my head of what I should be, how much I should accomplish, and how perfectly it should be done. It is a crazy mess and I am learning to unravel it, but the progress is almost imperceptible.
Unfortunately, holding myself to standards of perfection is not where this Utopian-esque way of thinking ends. I guess that means I hold others to an impossible standard as well. My perfect worlds where I lived for years as a child created a hopeless romantic that lives, deeply embedded in my soul. Which is why I cannot commit to something that is less than 'perfect'. Which obviously is a rarity outside of movies and photographs and music... I have had many perfect moments in my life...those times when you say, "I will never forget this feeling"... There are, of course, every day things that I enjoy too. However, I seem to have this annoying sense of discontent for the mundane. I want everyday to be new and interesting, not necessarily drastic changes, but little things that make me smile or make me think or take me to a higher plane.Through all of this though, I do not feel as though I am a perfectionist, but rather a romantic dreamer with idealistic hopes. =) Silly? Maybe to someone who doesn't know me. Say, when I go to the beach and set foot on the sand, and it starts pouring, the rain does not ruin my day... no, in fact it makes it all the more infused with unexpected splendor. I take things as they come, hungrily eating up all life can give me.
The point is not, however, how many perfect moments I can create for myself, for that would be a very lonely existence, and only one form of perfection. The point for me is to see each moment as a gift, as one of the many forms of beauty, and not as falling short of anything. I will not lower my standards, or stop seeking after beauty and pleasure, or to have someone know exactly what would bring me bliss. I should revel in the fact that I am a mystery, a puzzle. One thing I know is that life is not a guarantee... That abruptly, at any moment it can end for any one of us. Also, each moment we do not enjoy, is within our power to change. This I believe. This will be my newest self-bettering task. I will try to balance the insanely hopeless romantic in me, with the one who can be delighted with the commonplace, burnt toast, forgot-to-hold-the-door, and nearly never perfect hours in the day.