In the past few weeks I’ve received a few comments and read a few posts saying that it is wrong to talk about our struggles and imperfections (the way I do in the Confessions of an Imperfect Mother series, and many other posts on this blog). I can definitely see where these thoughts are coming from, but I obviously disagree. For that reason, I wanted to share with you why I choose to talk about imperfection. Why I share my struggles and shortcomings on my blog, and why I don’t hide it when I’m having a rough day or I’m counting the minutes to bedtime.
- Because it’s real – As much as I’d like to be the picture-perfect mama, that has it all together and never feels impatient with her kiddos, I’m not. I am most definitely striving to be more patient, more loving and more selfless, but I’m not there yet. If I pretend that I have it all together and I’m a bundle of joy every moment, that won’t help any one. It won’t help me because I’d be lying to myself, and it certainly it won’t help my readers, because they might feel alone, or feel like they are the only ones struggling. I want to be real, share my real heart, imperfections and all. When we’re real about our imperfections, God’s grace shines through so beautifully, because we know beyond a shadow of a doubt, that He’s helping us in all of our weaknesses.
- To Encourage – I write about imperfections to encourage other moms. Bad days happen, so do things like depression and crazy hormones. When I’m having a bad day it doesn’t help me to hear some one tell me: “just be joyful”. As some one who has struggled long and hard with depression, PTSD and extra crazy pregnancy hormones, I know that being told to “suck it up” is never helpful. When I’m feeling down I want to hear from some one who is honest about their struggles, and the ways that they are working through them. Those are the words that let me know that I’m not alone, they let me know that whatever I’m dealing with is just a phase that will soon pass, and it even helps me not to take myself too seriously. I want to encourage other women that they are not alone on this path, and share practical ways to work through the tough realities that we may face in day to day life. That is why I honestly share the ups and downs of my journey with you.
- Because I don’t want to just share my highlights – I love Steve Furtick’s quote “The reason we struggle with insecurity is because we compare our behind-the-scenes with everyone else’s highlight reel”. Isn’t that so true? It’s so easy to look at our friends lives or the lives of bloggers or pinterest buddies and assume that every one else has it all together. But the truth is, none of us do! Sure, some of us are more crafty than others, and some people have got organization down to a science, but no one is awesome at everything. Only God is perfect, and when we’re honest with ourselves and with other people about our shortcomings, we see His greatness all the clearer, and can showcase it to the world. The fact that He loves an imperfect person like me is absolutely amazing, and I want the world to know the wonders of His grace, NOT the wonders of my faux perfection.
- Because I want to share my heart – Let me use my marriage as an example for this one: When he gets home, my husband often asks me how my day was. I always try to answer this question honestly. I don’t slap on a fake smile and just say everything was rainbows and butterflies because this is the “right” answer. No, I share my true feelings, the things I struggled with, the things that made me rejoice. I want him to know me. If I just told him the good parts of my day, he would never be able to rejoice with me when my bad day got better, or share in my utter relief and thanksgiving as God revived my heart after years of depression and PTSD. Sharing my hard times with him has let him know me, and has let him see the beauty of God’s loving kindness as God has worked in my imperfections and shortcoming to His glory. Sharing my fears, my failures and my ugly side allows us to rejoice together when the healing came, and it has brought us closer together. I view this blog in a similar manner. Of course, I will never share my heart with you the way I do with my husband, but I do want to share pieces of myself, parts of my story, so that we can laugh, cry, and praise God for His faithfulness together.
- Because I want to know you – If we only share the positive and perfect sides, we will never truly know each other. And I want to know you. I want to rejoice when you rejoice and be a shoulder when you need to cry. I want to pray with you when you are having a bad day, and tell you that you’re a great mama when you need the reminder. I won’t be superficial, I don’t want you to think I have it all together, because I don’t. But I do know the One who does. And so I keep talking about my imperfections, because it makes His perfection shine all the brighter. It gives us hope, that although we fail daily, His mercies are new every morning. Although we find life in this world to be difficult, He has overcome the world, and we can find joy, although the road is rough, and we may get weary along the way.
Yes, I will keep talking about imperfections, and most importantly, I will keep talking about the One who loves me through those imperfections and gives me grace and strength when I think I can’t make it through another day.