I spend my life, almost every waking hour trying to look good. Many of us do, even subconsciously. Facebook is a breeding ground for this, always striving to put our best face forward. I’m a poster child for the “I’m Perfect” campaign. I can’t just be an A student, I have to look like the A student. I can’t just drink tea, I have to blog about drinking my tea. Seriously, my Instagram is rampant with perfection (or my idea of) and it can be exhausting. I’d never tell the other girls in my hall that I sneak Raman or that I pick my nose (just fess up ladies, you know it happens).
I am constantly checking over my shoulder and evaluating, comparing, and dying a little. But today, Jesus brought the reality and I’m still struggling with it. I guess my coping mechanism is this blog post. I have recently become very sick, probably the worst head cold in the history of all head colds and it just won’t leave. Seriously, it’s like a bad middle school break up, he just keeps coming. I’ve missed classes (something I try very hard never to do in fear of missing material,or, cough cough, looking like a total loser student…), missed my work study (which I showed up sick too, just to show the boss I was actually sick, in fear that he might think I was blowing him off), and finally, in my image-obsessed life struggle, I have hid out in my room in fear that people might look at my face or hear me blow my nose. I look sick because I am sick, but heaven forbid I should let anyone else know that.
Finally, in total desperation I headed to the store to pick up some meds and tissues. I was hoping to be in and out, nose (which has completely scaled over) hidden and swallowing my painful coughs, I grabbed all my meds and scurried out, avoiding eye-contact. As I’m driving away, I started to cough and basically spewed (is that even a word?) mucus everywhere just as some dude drove past, in a BMW, making eye contact. I banged my fists (after he was past me) on the steering wheel and yelled something unintelligible. No matter how hard I tried to hide, I just couldn’t. So what does this have to do with reality and Jesus? Well, I needed a moment when life just wouldn’t let me be ‘perfect’. Where someone had to see that I was ugly and sick, and totally out of control of it all. I needed a reminder that I’m trying for all the wrong things in life. If I put even have the devotion into my devotions, or my prayer times, or my evangelism, I’d probably be pretty good. But instead, I waste all my energy on trying to look ‘perfect’ for people who don’t even care. What a waste.
So here is my public declaration of attempted change. I, Laurel, shall enjoy the small things in life, I shall try to not care about looking ‘perfect’ or coming off as ‘perfect’, but I will siphon some of that energy into my relationship with Christ. The one who sees through my facade and still loves me beyond explanation.
So girls, guys, stop exhausting yourselves, its futile, and the energy is better spent elsewhere. Now excuse me, I have to go to class, snot and all.