When they came back from their walk I was on the couch watching TV, proud as all get-out by what I had accomplished. Walking into the kitchen my mother went ballistic. In my haste to clean perfectly I had missed wiping clean a one square foot section of counter-top to the left of the stove. It was the first thing my mother saw when she entered the kitchen.
“Can’t you do anything right, you are so lazy, all I ask is one thing, get your ass off the couch and finish the job…scream, scream, scream.” When I pointed out how perfect the rest of the room was she turned and stormed out of the kitchen. I was beyond hurt. I had tried my best to please her and all I did was piss her off. I was a failure in the eyes of the person I wanted to impress with my efforts.
That day I learned that even if you think it’s perfect, it’s not, and that sometimes the people you admire most are the ones who focus on the one square foot of crumbs rather than the rest of the gleaming kitchen.
It’s too bad my mother focused on the crumbs. It’s too bad that out of my entire childhood and relationship with her I focus on the crumbs, I am after all her daughter. At least now, with my own family and the people I deal with each day, I try to look past the crumbs and search for gleam. But as has been pointed out to me on numerous occasions I’m not perfect, no one is.