Yesterday, after a few minutes of scrubbing the bathtub, I set down the sponge and said to myself, “Good enough.” The words felt unfamiliar. How long had it been since I had said that something was “good enough?”
When I returned to work after my maternity leave with Bean, I remember telling people that as a working mother of a toddler, “good enough” was a staple phrase in my vocabulary. As in, the dinner isn’t gourmet, but it’ll do. The house isn’t perfectly clean, but it’s no hoarder’s den either. The laundry isn’t finished, but it’s good enough.
What happened to “good enough?”
There’s been far too much “not good enough” in my inner monologue lately. Too many “shoulds.” Too many impossibly ambitious to-do lists. Too much pressure to be perfect, along with guilt for my inevitable failure. Too much comparison. Too much envy of other people’s seemingly wonderful lives. Thank God I’m not on Pinterest, or my head might explode.
I know I’m not alone in this. Right?
Parenthood is hard. Adulthood in general is overwhelming at times. So why make it even harder on ourselves? Instead of reserving all our kindness and understanding for others, let’s just save a little for ourselves now and then. Because sometimes we can’t do it all, and that’s okay. Not everybody is going to be happy all the time, and that’s okay. Sometimes we just need a break – and that’s okay.
Tonight, as I sit with my laptop at the dining table still covered in crumbs from dinner, looking over at the crookedly hung display of Bean’s artwork, I am struck by this truth:
My life isn’t perfect. My house isn’t immaculate. My kids aren’t perfectly dressed. Sometimes they’re not very well behaved. But we’re healthy, and we’re generally happy, and we’re trying our best, most of the time. And that’s good enough.