My friends dusted off their child rearing manuals, cracked their knuckles, and dove in.
"I wait until the reloaded bowl has at least six dog hairs in it..." [mother of 2]
"I wait until my child's gagging on the dog hairs... unless of course said dogs eat the Cheerios before the bowl can even be reloaded once." [mother of 1 with 2 dogs]
"If you don't watch her so closely, you won't worry so much." [mother of 2]
"You are doing everything you can to build her immune system. If it makes you feel any better, I let my kids eat Cheerios they drop outside. Look away..." [mother of twins]
These are precisely the qualities I appreciate most in my friends. A ready sense of humor, self deprecation, practicality, and above all: flawless parenting.
I am not a fan of pretending things are perfect. Perfect is plastic, and fake, and totally not interesting. Fortunately for me, by those parameters my life is kale-certified organic, uber real and ultra fascinating.
I don't mind editing my life for public consumption on this blog or social media, but I don't want it airbrushed beyond recognition. And I'd rather relate to other people than try to be better than them. That's why I often mention here that my house is underdecorated and overly messy. My horse misbehaves, even though I know better. My baby is bald. (but she's perfect anyway. bad example.)
I've only been a parent for a short while, but the struggles with striving for perfect, or even feeling "good enough" started early. Pregnant women are judged more, and more harshly, than any other demographic I've been part of. Infants invite endless advice and nonstop comparisons. Toddlerhood and its accompanying emergent personality suggests to the world in general that you are riddled with parental incompetence.
It's in defiance of this
Rose colored glasses? No thank you, I'll just keep working toward making my peace with imperfection and take ownership of my own real, gritty, dumped-cereal life. La vie en rose.