Behind-the-scenes: I earnestly hope everyone has a “Caley” in their lives. She is someone who brings life into a room and gives space to the messy bits of life. She and I met through friends and husbands years ago, but what drew me to her this time was our mutual struggle with perfection. In short, it is a beast. However, as you will read, Caley is no longer defining her life by what is or isn’t perfect. Instead, she would tell you that life is composed of near-perfect moments, and a whole bunch of moments that give you opportunities to grow. Enjoy a look inside her world and what God has written into her story.
Where does doubt or comparison hide in your life?
“Oh gosh. It’s everywhere.”
“I don’t necessarily think it hides. It is so easy to see in social media, in church, in family. I think it is something I have to be really self-aware of. It is easy to compare—being a momma—how my kids act, what they wear, what I am feeding them. It is something that is everywhere, especially for me.”
How do you fight against it?
“Being self-aware and praying for wisdom.”
“Recognizing I am not the standard that I need to live up to. Rather, it is the Lord’s. And, I don’t want this come across as harsh, but people don’t matter. It doesn’t matter what other people think.
Ultimately, it’s saying ‘God, what do I need to be doing, as a mom, as a wife?’ Then, expecting Him to deliver. I have to ask for help and then give it over. It is a continual heart-check.”
Being imperfect: is it something you are or something you wish you could be?
“It depends on the situation. I think that I am imperfect, but I am a perfectionist. I have grown a lot in that area since having babies. Even before, I wouldn’t have shown my face without make up on.
I mean, I would go home, when I was working full-time, to vacuum during my lunch because I wanted to come home to vacuum lines. Now I am like, ‘there are crumbs all over my floor.’
“So, I am learning it is not about perfectionism.
And, that is so freeing.
And, it is more freeing than it is hard. I don’t have to have it all together.
Even if I wanted to, I would never.
So, I am putting this huge expectation on myself to be something that I truly cannot be.
And then I ask myself, ‘Why am I trying so hard?’ There are so many other things I could be doing or trying other than perfectionism.”
How has God shown you over the past six years that you don’t need to keep this standard?
“Kids, for sure. And, lowering expectations of marriage. You don’t know them fully when you get married and expectations are either high or low. Then, kids are thrown into the mix and you both change drastically.
You end up asking the questions, ‘Who am I?’ ‘What am I?’
Honestly, I got to this point where said, ‘I can’t do this.’ I was doing it all by myself. I wasn’t in the Word like I was supposed to be.
I was checking the boxes and doing the things I was supposed to do. I found myself at a low where I couldn’t be a mom to my three-year-old and teach her about the Lord if I wasn’t pouring myself into it and wanting Him the way I needed to.
It came down to this: I can’t without Him.
It has been this awesome journey of trying to get up before my babies and having this quiet time before the Lord. Discovering who He is without placing the expectation on myself that I need to. It has changed my marriage, how I interact with my kids.”
“It is a beautiful thing to be wanting Him and needing Him, instead of needing Him and wishing I wanted Him… It is true when they say, ‘I need thee every hour.'”
If God were to show you your heart, what is He writing into it?
“Grace. Lots of grace. He is chiseling away at it and softening it to be open to what He wants.”
“My mom has a lot of words of wisdom and she recently said, ‘my time is not my own.’ Now, I am learning that it isn’t all about me. Giving up of myself in a way that is sustainable because I give to my kids and husband…and God is the one who fills me up.”
Today: Let go of perfection’s hand
This week: Examine what areas of your life could use less perfection & share them with someone who cares for you
For life: Take time to need God & want Him