Daily life has gotten in the way of me meeting the goal of "daily slicing." I wish I could say otherwise, but the truth is that I have not fully met the challenge. What to do with this reality-I think it may be best to face it and let it guide my writing today. Lately, I have become more and more cognizant, as a working mother, of my tendency to maintain some pretty unrealistic expectations of myself and others. This tendency toward perfectionism plays itself out in ways both large and small and is a struggle in the lives of most working mothers that I know. I recently read a reassuring article about the demands and constant balancing act of a working mother of three, who is in a high profile position. She argued, quite persuasively, for a moratorium on perfectionism.
Nowadays it feels like we are supposed to bring home the locally sourced bacon, cook it in a ceramic skillet that releases no harmful chemicals into the mouths of our babes, or leaches itself into our soil; while we twirl about the kitchen completing a Pilates routine and reviewing notecards, that we have colorfully laminated for our children as they dutifully pursue their AP course work and balance every sport and artistic endeavor known to man. This is all after having completed a full work day or school day-managing the moods and machinations of the workplace or the school lunch room. I am all for engagement and community service, working hard and setting high expectations, but our expectations and the amount of daily information we have to process may be making us a bit nutty. In the end I believe we have a choice in managing the constant push and pull of these demands. We can become resentful of other women, who do not have to balance in the same way we do, or more compassionate, as we realize that most all of us are engaged in some of the same struggles, having to give up one thing in order to have another. In the end, we may be able to have it all, but certainly not all at the same time.