Imperfect Perfection

I have discovered my favorite moments with my kids are at night. These are the moments they tell me all about their day. This could go on for hours, if I wouldn’t flip the light off. I love to hear what was challenging to them, what made them happy or why they were sad.

I was sitting in bed with my daughter, Sophie, a few weeks ago as she was especially chatty about a new book that had caught her attention. She was reading Wonder. With her pre-teen dramatics in full flare-up, she explained to me the plot of the book (which I already knew). She was very upset because the main character of the book was being bullied, just because he looked different.

“Auggie loves Stars Wars just like me, mom. These kids are just cruel!”
She was getting it. I want my children to be empathetic. I want my daughter and all of my kids to understand how to treat all kids, no matter what they look like, with love and kindness.

I was about to be thrown for another loop, without any hesitation my daughter says, “Mom, when I get older, I probably don’t want to look exactly like you. It would be a little scary to look like you.” Her hand touched my nose as she said, “if my nose was crooked, well, the kids in my class would make fun of me.”

After a momentary loss of words, her head was still tilted down to the bed as her eyes searched for my response. I quickly changed the conversation to humor, “well no one wants these fangs” and I pretended to bite my victim with a sinister laugh. I turned my head and walked to the closet with tears rolling down my face. I quickly leafed through shelves of clothes for yet another day. I gave each of my girls a kiss goodnight and my daughter looked into my eyes as if she knew my thoughts. “What’s the matter, mommy?” I simply replied, “The cat must be making my eyes itchy.”

For an instant I wanted to tell her “I want to look like all the other mommies, but I never will. I am sorry if I embarrass you.” I wanted to tell her that I want her to want to grow up and emulate her mom in every way. But I simply said “goodnight”.

I went as quickly as I could to my bathroom and looked in the mirror and looked at the reflection staring back at me. I covered half of my face and I saw a beautiful reflection, then removed my hand to see the other half which is full of scars from a childhood tragedy that was part of my past. I squinted my eyes hard enough and saw a blurred reflection, a photoshopped like image that made everything look better at that moment in time.

In that moment, I was taken back to church when I prayed to God as a little girl. I would hear the words in service “I am not worthy to receive you, but only say the words and you shall be healed.” I remember praying, “Jesus, maybe this week you will say the words to heal me.” I was not sure what the words were but maybe God could heal me. Quite possibly, God would snap his fingers or if I closed my eyes tight enough when I opened them “POOF!”.

As a 38 year old Young woman, I have somehow come to realize that although this “Poof theory”, as I call it, would be quite lovely it doesn’t exist. I have this sneaky suspicion that Jesus saves his miracles for more important things.

That night, as I looked at myself one last time, I realized that I am exactly the imperfectly perfect image that God has created. As I look in the mirror at each imperfection there is also strength. Jesus has healed me by giving me the courage and determination through adversity. He has shown me love and given me love to share. By trusting in God, I have had the opportunity to see that true beauty lies within and a beautiful heart is more powerful than outside appearances.

With new breath, I walked back upstairs and told my daughter three things that night:

BE KIND – Don’t ever say words that would hurt someone else. Only say words that you would want to hear. Just like Auggie – words hurt and once you say them you can’t take them back.

YOU’RE BEAUTIFUL – You have a beautiful heart and that is more important than what you look like, always. Do not judge anyone on their looks or their differences.

BE YOU – Make good choices, let God help you because he is always with you.

I never realized how I would feel after a short conversation. The fact is our past is part of us and makes us who we are today. I believe that we all have had moments of wanting to be more beautiful, smarter or even wealthier. My prayer today is that we find peace and beauty in recognizing the strengths we have.

“God will make everything beautiful in your life in his time. He will drop flowers of Grace in the garden of your heart so all will see the beauty that is your life in Christ.”
Ecclesiastes 3:11-14

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Published by

shaunasaylor

I have been blessed with a loving and supportive husband. We have three spunky and smart children. My oldest Sophia is ten. Benjamin and Natalee are 7 year old twins. I also have three stepchildren who are now in college and out starting their paths as young adults. I call home Johnstown, Pennsylvania although I lived in Roanoke Virginia for some time as well. Home is now further south in Florence, Alabama. In my free time I love to kayak, be outdoors and spend time with family and friends. I am unsure of what direction this blog will take, although God has laid it on my heart to share my story. After being severely burned as a child I now have the gift to share my experiences. You will hear about moments of sadness, pain and how joy has filled my life. I hope you will share this journey of self discovery with me.

9 thoughts on “Imperfect Perfection”

  1. You have always been beautiful inside and out. It just took awhile for you to realize that. God made all of us perfect but along life’s journey, we all get scars. Some can be seen visually and some are invisible to the naked eye. What you do with your scars is up to you. You not only became a stronger person but one who is kind and empathetic towards others. By being the person you now are, you can help others struggling through their scars. God doesn’t create our adversities, but he will use them to bring you to have a closer relationship with him. He has succeeded!💕

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Shauna, this post moved me to tears. What a wonderful conversation this led to with your daughter. Thank you for being so transparent and vulnerable to share it. I love the above comment–we are all scarred as we travel through this life–some visible and some invisible. So so true!
    2Corinthians 5 speaks of us shedding these earthly bodies and putting on our heavenly bodies like new clothing. What a comforting thought to know all our outside and inside scars that are with us in this life will be a thing of the past.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Woah! This was so touching. I can remember feeling exactly how you felt hearing negative words from a loved one knowing not how to respond. When I look at your photo I see a strong beautiful woman of the ALMIGHTY GOD. May he continue to wrap his loving arms around you and your family. Thank you for this beautiful post.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Hi, but I do not see anything wrong with you. Anyway, am glad you mentioned Jesus. Let me tell you, God is supreme, and above Him their is no other.

    This means that what God calls you is finally.Its like when you are in employment, what your boss call you is final.

    And what does God call everybody? MAN(human being).
    And God created man in His own image.

    Listen to what God calls you and also learn to to call people,including yourself, what God calls them.

    Also, this is your reply to people who do not call you what God calls you,”No, God did not say that.”

    Like

  5. Shauna, Wow…God put me in the right place at the right time to meet a very wonderful person this week.
    You write well and can express your thoughts that moved me to tears, what a joy to read and know more about you.
    Sounds like you’re a really good mom too. Thankful to call you a friend.
    Gena

    Liked by 1 person

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