Thursday, 3 June 2010

It doesn't have to be perfect, it just has to be done (eventually)

When I was small, I used to like drawing pictures of people. I used to sit happily with my packet of felt pens and a pile of paper, and I used to take a sheet of paper off the top of the pile and, at the top, draw the outline of a head. And then I would sit back and consider. Perhaps the head wasn’t quite the right shape: perhaps it was too close to the top of the paper: perhaps my felt pen line overlapped slightly where it met. Whatever it was, if it wasn’t perfect, I would put the sheet of paper to one side, take another one from the top of the pile, and start again. Eventually we had a pile of discarded paper with outlines of heads at the top. Dad took them to work, cut the heads off with a guillotine, and gave the pile of (slightly smaller) paper to another child. Who wasn’t completely neurotic.

Because let me tell you, perfectionism on this level doesn’t work as a character trait. It most certainly doesn’t bring happiness. It brings paralysis, and a pile of unfinished things. But I am self aware, and I fight it. Ha! Take that, unhelpful perfectionism! One of the things I do, is I force myself to finish things. Even if they are not perfect. Even if they are really, really not going to end up perfect. Like the Granny Square That Grew And Grew. I’m going to accept that this is never going to be bigger than a lap blanket. I’m going to accept that if I buy enough yarn to finish it I’m going to have to take out a second mortgage. So I’m going to finish it with a beige – yes, beige – border. And then I’m going to weave in the ends, and I’m going to use it. I’m sure it’ll be good for me (I’m not saying this through gritted teeth. Honestly).

It's been beautiful in the garden today. The yellow tree (I don’t know what it’s called) is doing its yellow tree thing.

And the roses are starting to come out: they’re mostly still in bud, but they’ll all be out soon. I live in a house with roses round the window: I’m very lucky. (They aren’t all perfect: some of them have been nibbled by something or other. They’re still beautiful, though. Look, I’m trying!)


Janel said...

Could it be a golden chain tree?
Like these

Susie said...

Yes, thank you! That's exactly what it is. And also I've just googled them and I see they're very poisonous so that's probably a good thing to know ;-)

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