This I Believe

Meghan - Montgomery, Minnesota
Entered on December 20, 2007
Age Group: Under 18
Themes: forgiveness

Perfect, I’m Not

According to The American Heritage Dictionary, perfection is defined as a state of undiminished or highest excellence; without defect; or flawless. Everyone strives to be perfect, and oddly enough, everyone fails. There is one perfect person out there, and her name is Barbie. The only reason she is perfect, is because she isn’t real. What I’m trying to get at here is that unless you’re talking about a test score, there is no such thing as perfect.

Being the first born child, I had always felt a lot of pressure to please my parents and set a good example for my younger siblings. To me, that meant getting straight A’s, staying out of trouble, and looking good while doing it. I worked hard in school and kept my reputation, but then I had to stop and ask myself, who was I doing this for? Surely my parents would still love me if even if I got a B or made a mistake. As it turns out, I am my worst critic. All along it was me that was setting the impeccably high standards. Since then, I have begun to embrace my flaws and learn from my mistakes.

Being a teenage girl, I of all people, would know what it’s like to struggle with your body image. Everyone has looked at someone else whether it is on TV, in a magazine, or even at the mall and thought something like, “If only I was _______, I would be happier”. You can’t pick and choose your features, so you have to learn to love what you have. Take me for example, yes, I know I have a big butt, but hey, it makes sitting a lot more comfortable. And on top of that, I’m only 5’1, but wishing for a growth spurt is pointless, so I just enjoy the perks of being short. I will never have to worry about hitting my head on anything and I save money by being charged the children’s admission instead of the adult’s when I go places.

All my life, I’ve never got anything less than an A on my report card. This year I have straight A’s, except for that F I’m currently getting in College Pre-Calculus. The grade doesn’t reflect all of the time and effort I’ve put into the class. But that’s the best I can do, and I can’t do better than my best, so if it’s good enough for me, it’s good enough for my parents.

Over these past few months I have really grown (not literally) and changed as a person. I no longer hold myself to such impossible standards and allow myself to slip up now and then. Besides, there is no better way to learn than to do something dumb and then be able to say, “Yep, I’m never doing that again”. Everyone has their own idea of perfect, it doesn’t really exist, and that’s why it’s only an idea.