Litte Miss Perfect

I've been known to be a bit of an over-achiever.

Shocking, I know.

At a very young age, I wanted to be the best. At everything. All the time. I'm not quite sure when or how I got the message, but like many little geeks-in-training, I learned from a very young age that perfection was a virtue and mistakes were unacceptable. While this approach resulted in a lifetime battle with yo-yo dieting and ragged self-esteem, my endless pursuit of perfection did serve me well on the education and career front.

Then I became a mother.

It's funny. My generation of women grew up in a post-feminist world where we were told from a very young age that we could be anything we wanted to be. We could bring home the bacon AND fry it up in a pan (all, apparently, while smoking unfiltered cigarettes). Problem is, many of us mistook the ability to be anything for the need to do everything - and do it all perfectly. While a manageable affliction when we were single, and even early on in marriages (sure, you work every night until 9pm - you can sleep in on the weekend!), this becomes a damned-near fatal disease when mixed with children.

Once the babies arrive, we find the pattern of behavior that brought us career and oftentimes personal success is slowly-but-surely killing us as moms. We strive to be perfect on the job and on the home front. To be the perfect employee, perfect wife, perfect sister, perfect daughter, perfect friend, perfect mother. Early on, we learn to live on adrenaline and Diet Coke - trading much needed sleep for another load of laundry or last minute Power Point review. The baby will be awake in a few hours anyway! I might as well get a bit more work done...

The BadAssMama is going to tell it to you straight. Perfection is a myth. Work-life balance is a lie.  True, both my career and my family are important to me. But after many sleepless nights and attempts to be all things to all people, I have finally come to realize that just because I can be anything doesn't mean that I have to DO everything right now, all at once. And just because I strive to be the best, doesn't mean that I will BE the best in all things at all times.

I haven't figured it all out, but I do know that Little Miss Perfect has got to go...

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