I am far from a perfectionist. But I have my moments. There are certain things in my life that I know I can control, so I try my best to keep that control. Our bedrooms may be disaster areas, but the living room almost always looks good in case of company. If I hang a picture and it turns out just slightly off-center, I will re-do it. I follow recipe instructions exactly, afraid that the dish won’t turn out perfect. I’m notorious for not finishing craft projects because I’m afraid they won’t turn out “right”.
I worry about achieving perfection. I started a project (which will appear in another blog entry when it’s completed), and I’ve fretted over every detail. Measuring and sawing and painting. Everything has to be perfect.
I’d just finished painting a shelf, when I suddenly had the bright idea for T and I to put our handprints just beneath it. I called out to T and told him my idea. He thought it was silly, but he was ready to dip his hand in that paint. We practiced what he would do. Carefully dip your hand in the paint. Stick hand carefully on wall. Pull straight away from the wall. Carefully. To achieve the perfect handprint. Then I would do the same. I imagined it turning out just like something I’d seen on Pinterest.
He dipped his hand into the paint. Carefully. He stuck his hand on the wall. Then, it slipped. There was too much paint on his hand, and it slipped. There was a giant mess on the wall. He looked at me slowly, and I could see he was worried about how I would react.
I laughed. I giggled. I told him to try again, all the while thinking I could cover up the mistake later with some white paint.
He slightly misread my laughter and started decorating the wall with his handprints. Little green handprints.
I laughed harder, and I gave way to my idea of perfection.
I dipped my hand in the paint and followed his lead.
Then we stepped back to admire our handiwork.