Not so latent perfectionism.

There are many, many, many times that I wished this blog was something more serious. More substantial. More honest. Maybe more cathartic. But many of the serious, substantial, honest things in my life are not completely my stories to tell. I am not here to put other people on blast. This blog is all about me. ME! ME! ME! Hopefully with enough self-deprecation to make it clear that me is not completely self-centered. Just mostly. See? Self-deprecation!


If you know me really well and have ever had a serious discussion with me about who I am and why I am that way, you know that I am an insane perfectionist. Insane. INSANE. You also might have noticed that I am not perfect. I  balance the difference between who I am and who I feel like I SHOULD be with self-deprecation, distractions, glitter, jokes n jokes n jokes, mess, caffeine, drama, more self-deprecation, defensiveness, offensiveness, quitting before I am discovered, never trying in the first place, excuses, etc. etc. etc.

Generally, I consider myself to be a high-functioning perfectionist. That is....until we come to the part of me that handles human relationships. The perfectionist in me MUST make relationships work. Any kind of relationship. No matter how unprofitable, unhealthy, and nonreciprocal, the relationship MUST be made to work. I can make it work. I can be perfect. I am totally responsible for the arc and outcome of the relationship. The weight of it all falls on my shoulders and I can carry it forever because I can be perfect.  If the relationship were to fail, it would be entirely my fault because I am imperfect. Imperfection revealed! Horror and shame!

When a relationship fails, I completely lose all perspective.  I go from a high-functioning closet perfectionist to a anxiety ridden mess. An "I must be on several different types of medication, most notably a good anti-depressant, to make it through every day" anxiety ridden mess.   I have been taking on the full weight of  every relationship failure. Blaming myself every step of the way. I have never stopped to think about whether or not the relationship was even a good and worthwhile relationship. I have just wallowed in my  failure. I have over analyzed and over credited my part and not stopped to look at the big picture.

Some parts of the big picture being:  Was the relationship good for either of us? Would it bring us satisfaction in the long run? Was it truly a necessary relationship? Are there better options?  Is the relationship profitable, reciprocal, and healthy? If no, am I immediately capable  and/or solely responsible for fixing it? These kind of things.

Gradually, I am forcing myself to stop and look at the big picture. When the panic over not being good enough, failing, and imperfection claws at my chest, throat, and head, I am learning to take a deep breath and step back. And then take another deep breath. And then maybe 8,560 more deep breaths. And then maybe I give myself a pass. And if I can not give myself a pass, I try to accept it and promise myself to do better next time.

And possibly as a result of these efforts, I find myself sleeping. And eating. And not taking medications.


Well, except for Excedrin. I *heart* Excedrin. That relationship is a whole other post.