At this time of year so many people are talking about their family’s perfect Christmas day or their perfect Christmas dinner. Throughout the year people talk about their perfect summer holidays, their perfect weekends, their perfect evening out and their perfect birthday plans. There’s always a lot of perfect in the online world and I love reading about other people’s ideals, their aspirations and their hopes. But not everyone feels that way.
There are always comments about how aiming for perfection will only leave you disappointed. How nothing is ever truly perfect and how we should all just be happy with whatever we have without the need to constantly strive for perfection.
I completely understand that. Modern culture and the media puts so much pressure on us to be perfect – from the way we look, to the way we live, to our home, car, diet and financial situation.
But, the thing is, when looking at a normal person’s idea of perfection, rather than the media ideal, you can see that everyone’s idea of perfect is different.
Everyone’s dreams vary massively. So if someone talks about their dream family Christmas – full of matching jumpers, singing Christmas songs around a piano and going to Midnight mass on Christmas eve then you know, if it happens just like that, it will be perfect for them. But that wouldn’t be perfect for me.
My idea of a perfect Christmas is going to the cinema on Christmas eve, leaving a mince pie, carrot and milk out for Father Christmas, sprinkling magic reindeer food in the garden and hanging Santa’s magic key by the front door. Going to bed on Christmas Eve wearing new pyjamas and then waking up to the children’s excited voices, running downstairs to see if Santa has been.
We’d stay in our pyjamas all morning, opening presents and having homemade pain au chocolat in the lounge before getting ready, family coming over, eating lots of food, drinking lots of drink and then settling down together to play games and watch festive TV.
My idea of a perfect Christmas isn’t big or glitzy. It’s not full of expensive gifts and it really just revolves around quality family time, a warm home and Christmas food.
Our perfect Christmas is perfect for us but other people may go to church on Christmas eve, they may open their presents after Christmas lunch and Father Christmas might leave stockings at the foot of the children’s beds. And that is perfect for them. But, it wouldn’t be perfect for me.
In every aspect of our lives we aim for our own kind of perfect. When Dave and I got together I wanted to build a perfect future – buying a house, getting married and then having children. But those things aren’t important to other people – those things wouldn’t feature in everyone’s perfect future.
When we plan holidays we look for our perfect time away. We look for accomodation with a separate sleeping area for the children, we look for a kids club and we look for both a beach and a pool. But, other people might want a villa, a city break or a backpacking adventure. Everyone’s perfect holiday varies so much.
I guess what I’m trying to say is that there isn’t one kind of perfect. Perfect varies from person to person and, although it might be the in thing at the moment to aim for a life less than perfect, whatever you are aiming for really is your own kind of perfect whether you realise it or not.
Your aims, your hopes, your dreams are what make you who you are. They are a big part of your personality and they vary massively from the next person’s dreams and ideals. We all want different things from life and we all view perfection in different ways.
When it comes down to it, as long as you are living the life you want to live, having the Christmas you want to have and are being the kind of person you want to be does it really matter what anyone else is doing?
At this time of year, and throughout the year ahead, it’s fine to strive for perfection – whatever that means to you or don’t aim for perfection if you don’t want to. But make sure that you let everyone else have their own bit of perfection if that’s what they want.
There is room for every kind of perfection in life and I know that I’m happy to strive for my own perfect Christmas – and I hope you have your own perfect Christmas too, whatever that consists of. Merry Christmas.