If you have followed my blog or Facebook page for any length of time, you know that I am a huge fan of Pinterest. And before that it was Southern Living and Better Homes and Gardens magazines. But I often found myself feeling inadequate. I wasn't a lawyer married to a surgeon living in a 200 year old farmhouse. I didn't have 2 perfect children with perfect teeth and hair, nor did I have a dog that looked like he just won Best In Show. They were living my dream, and I was vicariously living it with them through those pictures, comparing my life to theirs and coming up a tad short. But then one day I had a revelation, and let me tell you, my fairy godmother has a hell of a pitching arm.
The Problem Isn’t The Problem
The problem as I saw it was that I didn’t have the means to buy my perfect house in the perfect background and as luck would have it, my Prince Charming was blue collar, although he’s the British version, so I did get the accent. My children inherited my family’s unfortunate dental issues and the genetic inability to stay clean for more than 5 seconds, but you know what…..none of those things mattered. The problem was my attitude. While I sat around pouring over those images bemoaning the fact that I couldn’t afford my dream life, it was sitting around waiting for me to wake up. And that kiss that wakes the sleeping princess? It comes at you like a 90 mph fast ball.
Get Off The Sidelines Princess
I had a dream of a French Country Chateau Farmhouse with a gorgeous garden, dinner parties and perfect holiday meals. So what the hell was I waiting for? The power to live my fairy tale was within me, it always was, and that realization made all the difference. If I wanted it badly enough I had the power to change my story, but I had to dust off my crown and take that first step.
The Journey Is The Best Part Of Any Story
I found that I had talents I didn’t know I had! I opened myself up to new experiences, made new friends and took free classes. I learned how to junk my way into a home decor style that was me. I found more than I could have imagined. My dream life had added elements I didn’t even consider when flipping through those magazines or looking at endless perfect pins. I was so busy comparing apples to oranges that I couldn’t see I was the perfect peach. And I learned some important lessons along the way. Remember that perfect family in Southern Living posing in front of their 200 year old Farmhouse? What the picture doesn’t show you is all the hours of work that was put into that house; stripping wall paper, painting, and finding wood rot. It doesn’t show you the junk shows, antique stores and garage sales that made up their decor. It doesn’t show you the kid who ran streaking through the house because wearing bow ties is “stupid”, or that mom just threatened her daughter if she didn’t stop eyeing that mud hole. It doesn’t show you the 15 dried up hams that were served until the skill to present a perfect one magically appeared. In other words, it left out their journey…..their story. It was simply a snapshot, a brief nanosecond of their lives, a moment of peak perfection that went to hell in the next second because the dog started chasing the chickens. Once I changed my attitude and starting pursuing my own dreams did I find out I was living their life….the real one, not the snapshot. I didn’t have to envy them anymore, my story took up too much of my time.
Once Upon A Lifetime
They say “Dreams Are A Wish Your Heart Makes”, and I believe this to be true. But wishes are just that unless you are willing to get off your ass and drag your dreams kicking and screaming into a modern ranch style house in Oklahoma. These days I use Pinterest as a source of inspiration. Will I have the perfect backyard movie night? Probably not, but that won’t stop me from tweaking it and having my version, bed sheet screen, screaming kiddos more interested in fireflies than the movie and popcorn strewn everywhere. Am I living my dreams? Oh yes, my new updated version of them anyway, because that’s life. It’s an endless ever changing Fairy Tale where I kiss a lot of frogs, but that’s okay because at the end of the day I am home….our home. Where my kids love me, and my husband wraps his arms around me, brushes off the dirt on my check, straightens my crown and whispers in my ear, “I love dry ham”.
You write your own story, live out your dreams in real life instead of on a menagerie of Pinterest Boards, it’s up to you whether you wear the crown or stand in the crowd as the parade drives by.
Live Happily Ever After!