Striving for something that doesn’t exist

Perfection… it doesn’t really exist. I know that. But it’s so hard to not constantly strive for being “perfect” – whatever that means.

I feel like I’m failing in these areas:

  • As a mother: My baby is basically a fruitarian. I keep giving her a variety of foods, but she rejects them. And then I just want her to consume something, anything, so we fall back to fruit. The girl can eat her weight in watermelon!
  • As a wife: I’m sick of food, so that makes it hard for me to want to plan or prepare meals. I know I’m not great company, I get frustrated very easily and by the time I get to sit down and spend time with him, it’s so easy for my brain to just zone out or my body to drift off to sleep.
  • As an employee: I’m just burnt out on my job, I gain no satisfaction from it.
  • As a blogger: My inbox is booming… I get so many messages every day from people asking me to review their products. The ones I’ve accepted are on my to-do list, but it gets hard. I’ve turned down a lot too. The thing is, I don’t earn hardly anything from this site. I need to figure out ways to monetize it more so that I’m a little more compensated for my time/effort but also so I’m not alienating all of you who read it.
  • As an individual: I feel like I’m lacking vitality. That’s the best word I can come up with… I don’t have VITALITY. I feel too drained and exhausted to do anything. Sometimes it’s even tiring to think about laughing at something funny, so I give it a wan smile. That’s a sad place to be.
  • As a runner: Pre-baby, I average 25-30 miles a week most of the time, sometimes higher and sometimes lower, but that was my overall average. Now I’m lucky to be averaging 9-12 miles a week. It’s partly due to the heat, I’m not tolerating it well this year. But it’s partly due to… I don’t know. Fatigue, apathy, laziness? I want to run, I see runners on the side of the road and think, “I want that to be me!” But when it comes time to having the minutes to spare for a run, I feel like I’m on Empty.

So this week I’m kind of trying to recharge. No workout pressure. I’m going to pick up my 30-day Challenge again next week (Thanks Chris for suggesting the challenge break!) and I will try to figure out how to incorporate more time to rejuvenate into my schedule.

I have it, on very good authority, that the quest for perfection our society demands can leave the individual gasping for breath at every turn
Full speech can be found here:



    • I think I need to focus on taking better care of me. After all, there is the quote ‘Happy wife, happy life.’ And I’m sure there’s gotta be some equivalent for mom/baby too! Hopefully the other cards will fall into place with that aspect more in check.

  1. First, kudos to you for being brave enough to write this post. That level of vulnerability is refreshing in a society where everyone tries to only portray their best lives and post it all over Facebook, Instagram, et al.

    Brene Brown, whom you’re probably familiar with, has some fantastic research on vulnerability, courage, worthiness, and shame. A quote of hers that I constantly revisit is: “When perfectionism is driving us, shame is always riding shotgun and fear is the backseat driver.”

    I can’t endorse her work or her books enough! Best of luck to you finding YOUR balance.

    • Amazing quote, thank you for sharing and the kind words. I’ve watched some videos with Brene Brown, never taken the time to read her books, although they’ve been on my to-read list for a long time! I need to bump that up!

      Again, thank you!

  2. Jill, thank you for sharing. We all have been there. Thank you for your honesty and transparency. There is a time and a season for everything. It is all exhausting, but it will pass.

    Stay strong.

  3. I appreciate your honesty, Jill. It’s quite stressful to strive for perfection. I have bad days when Geneva doesn’t eat. Not like you, I have a problem of liking food too much so there is a headache of dealing with food preparation and cooking and exercising to burn extra calories. I used to ride and swim before Geneva but now I can only manage 4 runs/week at best. My energy level is always low too. I take prenatal vitamins ( I still nurse Geneva) and they help a bit.

    • That’s awesome that you still nurse her! I’m in the process of weaning now (because Alex has refused the breast for about a month now and I’m sick of exclusively pumping!). I probably should have kept taking prenatals during the whole time, but they upset my stomach.

      This parenting stuff is just so hard! You feel like you have a good day or two, like “I’ve got this!” and then BAM! it seems like everything is infinitely more complex and difficult. At least I know I’m not alone in that, there are parents everywhere!

  4. I want to wean Geneva too but she loves the comfort of b-feeding too much and it’s hard to wean. I never have to pump. Pumping is so much hard work so you should wean the sooner the better. Alex can start whole milk now starting from 11 months old. If she doesn’t eat much food, whole milk, egg and yogurt is good for her. Prenatals can upset your stomach so make sure you eat a lot before you take them or any kinds of vitamins to boost your energy. I’m nervous of thinking of having baby 2nd, especially at my age, 40 in August. Oh well lots of women out there can do it, so I guess I can try my best to endure this baby business thing 🙂

    • Your birthday is in August? Mine too! Let’s try to get together with the babies for lunch!

      Alex started whole milk last Friday and loves it. When she first rejected me, I tried giving her formula and she reacted as if I’d given her a bottle of poison. Gagged, threw the bottle… it was kind of funny!

  5. Sounds great! Let’s get together. I wanted to do it long before but I figured out you must be super busy with everything, full-time job, baby, running, writing, etc. I will facebook message you my cell so we can text and find a convenient time for getting together. It will be fun. Geneva drinks very very little whole milk. That’s why I don’t want to wean her yet.

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