Monday, July 01, 2013


Often since moving here to We Will Go, my blogging is pretty stinky. Either I have very little time to blog and so I have to resort to doing something quick like a quote and a photo or the internet is messed up (or the pc is equally messed up) causing me to just blog on my phone. I find it very hard to wax eloquently for more than just a few lines with my thumbs. For that reason, iPhone blog posts are invariably image driven with very little wordage.

It is hard to be eloquent for too long when that eloquence depends on these two thumbs.

I was dwelling on this today and getting discouraged about the quality of my posts. I really enjoy blogging and view it as a place to communicate about our lives and what God is doing but it is often also therapeutic for me. I like to make the pictures fit the story and try to have high quality ones. I like what I write to be fairly grammatically correct and try to write in a way that won't bore people to death while at the same time won't make my English teacher mama hide her face in shame.

I was thinking that truly, my blog posts have just been 2nd rate as of late. Actually worse than 2nd rate.

But then I was reminded of something...sometimes "your best" isn't "your best". Or to word it differently, sometimes you just have to do a little bit or nothing at all because that is what is best for you and yours.

I'm sure you've heard over and over again that if you're going to do something, give it your all. Or, why do something at all if you're not going to do your best?

That's the kind of thinking that causes us American mamas to walk around with a big, fat, inferiority complex. We think that ever birthday party has to look like the one we saw featured in Family Fun magazine. We think that every present has to be wrapped as elaborately. We think that every lunch we pack for our kids has to have fruit cut into cute shapes with funny little love notes included. And we think that our homes must of course look like something off of a Pinterest board. But that's just not reality.

So what happens?

Sometimes we decide to just not even do it at all. If we can't throw the perfectly big party for our kid, then we just don't do it. If we can't come up with the unique, oh-so-thought-out bridal shower gift then we just don't go, and if we can't paint a mural that rivals Michelangelo or afford a professional artist, then we just leave the wall blank.

Other times, we take on the task --- planning our friends baby shower, decorating the house or church for Christmas, coordinating hand-sewn matching outfits for the family portrait --- and we put such high standards on ourselves and insist on doing it so elaborately, that we can't even enjoy the actual result or event. We drive our family and friends crazy with our stress. We drive ourselves crazy with magazine-cover perfection playing over and over again like a slideshow in our minds.

Sometimes, 2nd best or even just barely doing it is best!

It is better to buy those store bought cookies and already-made frosting and actually enjoy decorating them with your kids than not doing them at all.

It is actually better to throw that party for a dozen friends and serve frozen pizzas, jarred salsa with chips, and ice cream sandwiches than not have one at all and go yet another three or four months without seeing each other. Or make everything so fancy that you can't even enjoy the party because you're working so hard at it.

It is actually better to just let your kids throw on their favorite outfits that accurately portray their tastes and personalities then let them grow up and a family portrait is never taken because you didn't have time to hand-smock their outfits. And guess what? A photo taken with a regular ole camera is better than nothing. You don't have to hire a professional if the budget it tight.

And guess what? I don't have to make my blog posts always be eloquent or deep or perfectly formatted.

To be honest, a lot of times it is pride that makes me place these high standards. I want to come across as perfect and if I wrap a gift in a brown paper sack, hang a Dollar General wreath on the front door, serve company sandwiches and chips, or have five blog posts in a row that are skimpy, then I worry what people are going to think about me. I mean after all, who is going to be impressed with those efforts?

No one ever wins awards for just getting by.

But is the award why we should do it? Should we always be motivated by other people's opinions?

Can't we just enjoy playing a sport for the sheer enjoyment of it even if we're not Olympic material or willing to invest hours and hours into it?

Can't we just enjoy the process of painting pictures knowing that no one will ever want to buy them?

Can't we just enjoy sharing a meal with a friend even if the recipe would never be pinned to Pinterest or look good on Instagram?

And can't I just enjoy the ritual of blogging even if my pictures are blurry, my spacing is off, and I don't ever get picked as a top blogger to follow?

Yes, I can. But I have to keep speaking truth to the situation and not let myself be defeated by lies. Lies that tell me my efforts aren't good enough. Lies that tell me other people are looking down on me. Lies that tell me that what I am doing is stupid and crummy.

The truth is, I enjoy blogging. The truth is, I love the daily habit of posting something, even if it is just a picture and a quote. The truth is, that sometimes God speaks through my efforts. The truth is, I want to blog.

Because of these things, I will keep blogging. Even if it isn't perfect. Even if the posts sometimes aren't even my 2nd or 3rd best.

Because sometimes, just doing it is for "my best".

1 comment:

Jen U. said...

I love this, Elysa! This....

"sometimes you just have to do a little bit or nothing at all because that is what is best for you and yours."

This is where my heart is right now. I too love blogging but I was spending too much time on my posts. I have backed off and at first I almost felt guilty about it but I want to enjoy blogging without it taking away from my family and home and I have now reached that point where I feel like that is happening. It means the blog doesn't get a post every single day. It means I don't get to share everything I long too -- it means every post isn't as elaborate as they used to be- but I'm still sharing and blogging and loving it. Just when I have the time and am able. ;)