Wednesday, March 25, 2009
We're all UNIQUE seashells....
"That's not perfect enough..." I say, as if it were FACT.
....my little Sister's angelic response, "Why not?"
"I don't know it's all... (searching for the right imperfect word) ....broken and holey. Not Godlike, but grave-like." To ensure she knew I didn't mean the seashell resembled a relic of Jesus in anyway.
The thought that something broken and holey wasn't pure perfection didn't occur to her as "imperfect" and she tossed it in her sack of seashells; perfect enough for keeping, to her.
Every inch we stepped she kept finding seemingly "perfect shells" the shells I was hunched with a rabid tenacity searching for, I was in full Huntress mode, "I will find THE MOST PERFECT SHELL on shore before the sun goes down, or I will not go inside. I am a woman on a MISSION. You cannot hide from me!"
Meanwhile, here she is skipping along the beach, pigtailed and optimistic finding perfect, uncracked, unadulterated perfection; curly shells, twisted shells, smooth and hard-no dents, cracks, strange escape routes from it's former inhabitants. Just perfect. What's she looking for that I'm not???
"Ok, let's just stand. We'll focus on one concentrated spot and there we'll find some PERFECT SHELLS. " This is me being SMART. Wise. A lady with a plan.
So there we stood, in full Hunchback of Notre Damn style, asses out, arched with the ambition to fulfill my duty as Superior Shell Finding Master. As my back ached from yesterdays running (another ridiculous inner competition I put myself up against) I thought to myself, I can't find a single shell that's "more beautiful" each one my eye skims across is absolutely splendid....they're all perfect, they're just different. What's any more perfect that the next? The similarity between how I regard beauty in day-to-day life, people, things, etc. and the searching for "the perfect shell" had an eerie kinship. For all the times I regarded someone as "eh" or judged with a vain outlook. What was wrong with me? Why couldn't I recognize that if I JUST LOOKED CLOSELY, I'd come to see that each shell, small, sunset colored, off-white, broken, cracked, halved, were all PERFECT. Each person, each voice, each lifestyle.... Perfectly what they were meant to be, perfectly unique. Some not as flashy as the others, but yet absolute in their discreet beauty.
I've had this COMPLEX about being unique, since I was about fifteen. I was told once, by a famous Reality TV Show judge in a singing competition (guess which MOFO I'm talking about) that I was "GREAT" but, "What's unique about you....." When you're fifteen you don't know that the fact that you EXIST is unique and that answer isn't the first one to come in your head, the answer that is least unique usually is, out of panic, sheer terror that someone would have the audacity to even question your brilliance, you sputter ordinary answers, hence fueling the vapor of righteousness to steam a bit more from the person that asked in the first place when you give your answer.
....years later after living a life of intentionally striving for "UNIQUENESS" often doing things simply because they seemed "different" than what everyone else was doing; here I am on the beach, judging perfectly unique and individual seashells as "imperfect."
It was only once I decided to have "concentrated focus" that I saw, clearly, that every. single. shell. was in fact, perfect. Perfectly imperfect in their differences from the others. I wanted to take them all home with me.
Only when I decided to let go of all of my preconceived notions about perfection could I truly see that perfection is an ideal only unique to beholder.
Each path that we take in the way we live is designer perfectly for each of us, some of us seem to take "safer" routes, but in the end we all pay some price. We all suffer certain losses, of confidence, faith, dreams, or people and we all have UNIQUE had to at one point sacrifice one thing to have another. Though we may walk similar paths to our neighbors and friends, we're each taking in everything UNIQUELY. Therefor our choices, our INTENTIONS, have to be just that; UNIQUELY PERFECT TO US. AS INDIVIDUALS, not as a whole. Never made out of obligation or duty, but out of our unique desire and yearning; to fulfill our individual journey's to their potential.
...I'll come home with a bag full of PERFECT shells. Some grey or tiger striped, others only a piece of what was, but all chosen from my perception of beauty.