Just like I had learned the importance of endurance, I found the art of compensation to be quite valuable, too. Compensating, to the average person, means to counter-balance something. To a person with a connective tissue disorder, it means constantly shifting your weight or changing your stance in order to prevent or manage a dislocated joint.
I'd tell my younger self all of this and more, until I was blue in the face. But the sad reality is that at 15, I probably wouldn't have listened to 41-year-old me any more than I listened to my parents; I would have likely simply politely nodded before uncapping the hairspray, my mind already thinking about hanging out with my friends on the weekend.
What is peculiar about an Image of Perfection is that it is nothing but a concept. From one point of view, it can be a vision that can inspire us to excel and accomplish great things. From a darker point of view, that same concept can be used as a club by the ego to emotionally beat us down into fear, doubt and self-sabotaging behavior.
Too often we focus so much on a door that has closed abruptly and unexpectedly in our faces that we don't realize that the world is full of other doors that are open to us. You won't find your happiness demanding that a certain closed and locked door reopen; all you will do is miss seeing alternate avenues of opportunities that are available to you.
All those well-meaning mothers with all their time-tested advice neglected to let me in on the pain that is mothering. How many mothers told me when I was pregnant that one day I'll turn around and a half-formed man will be living in my house and my precious baby will be missing? How many mothers told me that the day will come when I can't coax him into bunny ears for a picture even if I promised him unlimited video game time? How many mothers told me how much my heart will hurt when I realize my baby simply isn't a baby anymore?
In many predictable ways having a second child has changed my mothering -- for example, increasing my forgetfulness while simultaneously decreasing my reservoir of patience. My second child has just reached his first birthday and with that celebratory occasion came a mountain of realizations for me about the differences between baby number one and baby number two.