Recently, I had a text conversation with a friend. I had sent this great piece from a write I like, Tanya Markul (who goes by the oh-so-awesome moniker Thug Unicorn).
This friend commented that they were sometimes empathetic when they should be cord cutting. I could almost hear their sigh when they typed, ‘I’m a work in progress.’
That really struck me. Aren’t we all? Who do you honestly know who is ‘complete.’ No room for improvement. No goal to push towards.
How many movies or TV shows have you watched, or (if you’re like me) how many books have you read where the main character just trots through the whole story knowing everything they need to know, making no mistakes, not growing or needing to grow.
That’s one boring story, and off the top of my head I can’t actually think of one. They might be out there, but let’s face it – no one can relate to that person. We relate to the struggle. To the striving. It is a holy journey. A quest. Its Frodo volunteering to take the ring. Its Harry Potter and the horcruxes. Its Moana leaving the reef. Its the Rebels facing off against the Empire. Those are the parts of the journey we see, and we see the end. Those are not the ends to their journey. They move forward. They know more, they have learned from successes and heartbreak. They continue on their path, though we might not read or watch those stories.
We are the same. We might look at a time in our life as an episode or a chapter. That story had a beginning, a middle, and an end. But there were things that happened before, and things that happened after. A work in progress.
A couple of days ago (and a couple of days after this conversation with my friend), I happened to be listening to the radio. I wasn’t paying a lot of attention, but the radio person said something to the effect of, ‘. . . . trying to do everything and beating themselves up because its not perfect. Don’t beat yourself up because things aren’t perfect. Because you are a work in progress.’
You see why I started paying attention? I had been thinking about that holy journey. The glorious chaos of being ‘in progress.’
Here’s what struck me. Essentially, it sounds as if the radio person is suggesting that the reason things aren’t perfect is because you are a work in progress. Therefore, perfection is the destination.
I disagree. Ok, in reality I snorted steam out my nose and turned off the radio. NO! Perfection is NOT the destination.
Imperfection IS. Its not a temporary feature of a life. It IS life. LIFE IS IMPERFECT. To me, the ‘work in progress’ is not a journey toward perfection, but a journey to happiness within imperfection. Its ups and downs. Easy and hard. Glorious and heartbreaking. Sometimes all at once.
THAT made me think of two quotes from two good friends of mine (we’ve never met, but I am just sure we would be good friends if we ever did.)
Just because you’re a work in progress, doesn’t mean you aren’t gloriously, imperfectly, wonderfully worthy.
Take care my friends,
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