Amelia is a professor, consultant, writer, lover of photography, an over committer, big thinker, creativity, authenticity & sanity seeker. A contradictory blend of southern charm and steel wool and lover of all things chocolate. You can find Amelia at www.theblackhousestudio.com and at www.amotherlode.com

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My Imperfect Family

I love these pictures, they truly capture a day in the life of our imperfect family! I considered posting some family images that were a bit more polished, clean children, dressed in clothes that match, but I thought “no, this is real, this is the real us!”

I recently had a conversation with a young man who was struggling with some family issues. As he provided some details I would see glimpses of embarrassment cross his face and perceived that he may have been feeling especially vulnerable and isolated at the time. Every part of me wanted to reassure him that there are no perfect families, so I did.

I shared with him struggles our own family has encountered and issues that my parents had to contend with. Despite how things may appear on the outside, we all have challenges and obstacles. If you think about it, families are made up of people, humans….and doesn’t the very nature of being human imply flaws? imperfections? So when a group of people are together, a family, essentially your dealing with a crock pot of imperfections! We don’t have a choice in this, in being imperfect. Perfectionism is a lofty goal, it’s impossible to attain so logically a perfect family is an even loftier goal. The best we can do is try our best each day, right?

But what we do have a choice in is how we manage our own imperfections and how we respond to the imperfections of others, especially our loved ones.  I think what defines the character of a family, and individuals,  is how we choose to cope with one another’s imperfections- the gritty parts, the parts that may not be suitable for public consumption. The parts that call on us to forgive, to love unconditionally, to allow one another the space to learn from our mistakes with the security of love and support as the foundation.

What a blessing to know that perfection isn’t required and love is a constant…

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