There are some days when I have to take a step back from reading the blogs, especially the Mommy/family/crafty ones. At times you can read these blogs and you see the lovely pictures and the fabulous ideas and then you look at your own life and wonder why it’s not nearly as upbeat and fantastic as those Mamas who are always doing amazing things with their kids. I especially love the ones where Mama has kids who are perfectly content to help out in the kitchen and with other mundane tasks and I swear, I read those on the days when my own girl is working my nerves.
However a funny thing happened recently and once again, I was reminded that no one has a perfect life. Those same kids I see pictures of happily making crafts and looking so adorably put together, probably have minutes when their mothers wants to run and hide. Those families we see in public, that are so well put together driving their happy Volvo’s and Subaru’s probably have bad moments as well too.
I was struck by that reality last night as I stayed up late to catch the local news and heard this sad story about a couple in a town near me. It seems the husband was distraught over the upcoming end of his marriage and decided to not only end his life but the life of his wife. On the news, many folks including the roofer who did my roof (Maine is a very small state, it’s not six degrees of separation here but more like three) stated that the husband was a lovely man. This was a couple especially the husband who was active in the community, seemed like a real decent guy.
Only problem is real decent guys while they may take their own lives and I know firsthand as I lost a dear friend years ago to suicide. But taking your partner’s life pretty much in my opinion takes you out of the decent guy category. I have been through a divorce and it was painful for all involved but at the end of the day both the ex and I had to let go and move on. I suspect there were times when the ex Spousal Unit probably did think about killing me, yet we all have less than pleasant thoughts at time and for most of us we know such actions are not the answer and create more harm than good. So while at the worse moments we may entertain really bad thoughts, for reasonably mentally healthy folks, we know when to let em go too!
While my heart goes out to the families of these two, I am reminded once again that no one and I mean no one has a perfect life. We all have our crosses to bear or to say this is a less Christian manner, we all have shit to put up with. For some of us we grapple with financial issues, for some health issues and for others maybe relationships are the area that give us the most trouble.
Problem is we are living in a time and place where we are even less apt to share our burdens with one another and sometimes we snap. Like a pot on the stove too long, we boil over and in some cases without support or resources we choose the wrong way to handle our stresses. In the case of this couple, the husband truly chose the wrong solution to the problem.
I think back on my dear friend who took his own life, he had been a cop and was always the strong one. Yet he had suffered a great loss in the months before he chose to take his own life and instead of reaching out he put on a brave face. In the end though he cracked, and it was only after his death that all of us left behind realized that there had been signs that all was not well. Yet like so many of us we are all too caught up in our lives to really pay attention and read the signs.
So I wish I could think of an upbeat way to end this post, but I will say that it serves as a cautionary reminder that no one has a perfect life. I am actually convinced there might be greater value in living a life where you get raggedy and share the real you versus a life where we strive to only show perfection. The price of perfection or at least appearing perfect can come with a high price tag.