ZOOMERS: A blip in our quest for perfection

April Lewis delves into the human need for perfection

Every morning I come downstairs, and there it is.

Without fail, it is there to greet me.

“Good morning!” It mocks me as I wipe the sleep from my eyes.

Sometimes as I turn the corner I will it to be gone. Vanished. Out of my life.

But there it is.

The blip in my floor. The imperfection in my engineered floorboards.

And why have you left this imperfect mar on my perfect shiny floor? What is the bubble, the eruption meant to represent? What is its purpose save to cause me angst?

It is there to annoy me knowing I can do nothing about it.

I am not yet at peace with my aberration, but I am getting there.

I walk around it avoiding it. I stomp on it hoping that my weight will cause it to recoil back to an even perfection. I clean it lovingly with Murphy’s oil.

However, in an imperfect world, I know it serves a purpose. It is there to remind me that I can overcome the blips in my own life.

It is there to remind me that perfection is not attainable nor should I ever aspire to such a goal.

What is with our insatiable need for perfection?

The very word “perfection” implies it is unattainable, so why do we torment ourselves believing it is? Surely we only set ourselves up for disappointment and feelings of inadequacy.

Whitney Johnson, author of Dare, Dream, Do says “If we are perfect, then we are good enough. If we are good enough, people will have to love us.”

This speaks to the notion that underneath this relentless desire for perfection lies an underlying fear of failure or criticism, a fear which is deeply entrenched and a hard habit to break.

The media plays into this fear beautifully with its marketing strategies. You have got to have the latest gadget or toy, a bigger house, a flashier car, a more prestigious job.

And a more perfect place to live.

Speaking of which, I am hooked on HGTV’s two programs, House Hunters International and Live Here, Buy This. Both feed into our yearning for perfection.

If we lived in a different house or a different city or a different country, our lives would be perfect and so much happier we are led to believe.

The thing I love about the former show is none of the three final choices is perfect. There is always something wrong with the houses. They are either situated on a busy street, or the kitchen is too small or there is no backyard.

And yet the prospective buyers must choose one. How cruel, I am thinking, for the couple will never be truly happy knowing they had to sacrifice perfection.

As for the latter show, the producers push it up a notch with the implication that you can find perfection in another country. Why, that pastoral spread in Argentina, or the jungle house in Belize or the ocean-view villa in Mexico is all you need to find perfection.

They present the viewer with a projected, unattainable longing which only serves to fill us with more unhealthy disappointment.

Meanwhile, my blip in my floor is still there.

It is there cajoling me into a peaceful co-existence.

I am thinking this might be possible, as it doesn’t talk back or criticize.

I think we can become fast friends.

In an imperfect world.

April Lewis is the local communications director for CARP, a national group committed to a ‘New Vision of Aging for Canada.’ She writes monthly.


Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

The Right Reverend Peter Klenner, pastor of All Saints Community Church (and Bishop of the Anglican Mission in Canada). Contributed photo
Purchase aims to restore historic Crescent Beach landmark

All Saints Church fundraising to buy Holy Cross, retain it as ‘sacred space’

Surrey singer Glisha, band Sylvia Platters win Fraser Valley Music Awards

Nov. 19 event saw awards for artists in 16 categories, including former Surreyite Ashley Pater

This undated electron microscope image made available by the U.S. National Institutes of Health in February 2020 shows the Novel Coronavirus SARS-CoV-2, yellow, emerging from the surface of cells, blue/pink, cultured in the lab. Also known as 2019-nCoV, the virus causes COVID-19. Ontario is reporting three new cases of the novel coronavirus today, bringing the total in the province to 18. THE CANADIAN PRESS/AP-NIAID-RML via AP
Seven Surrey schools added to COVID-19 exposure list, bringing total to 40

Letter to parents: ‘Case(s) have been isolated, and there is no direct exposure risk at the time’

Elise Castle stands with food items she collected from friends and family on her 11th birthday, Nov. 21. (Contributed photo)
South Surrey girl, 11, celebrates birthday by hosting food drive

Elise Castle, 11, said she wanted to help people in need

Seed & Stone hopes to open a cannabis retail store in the old Giraffe Restaurant building. (Seed & Stone rendering)
Cannabis store proposed for White Rock’s West Beach

Digital public information meeting scheduled

Kyle Charles poses for a photo in Edmonton on Friday, Nov. 20, 2020. Marvel Entertainment, the biggest comic book publisher in the world, hired the 34-year-old First Nations illustrator as one of the artists involved in Marvel Voice: Indigenous Voices #1 in August. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jason Franson
VIDEO: Indigenous illustrator of new Marvel comic hopes Aboriginal women feel inspired

Kyle Charles says Indigenous women around the world have reached out

This 2019 photo provided by The ALS Association shows Pat Quinn. Quinn, a co-founder of the viral ice bucket challenge, died Sunday, Nov. 22, 2020, at the age of 37. (Scott Kauffman/The ALS Association via AP)
Co-founder of viral ALS Ice Bucket Challenge dies at 37

Pat Quinn was diagnosed with Lou Gehrig’s disease, also known as amyotrophic lateral sclerosis, in 2013

Minister of Justice and Attorney General of Canada David Lametti speaks with the media following party caucus in Ottawa, Tuesday, January 28, 2020. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Adrian Wyld
Exclusion of mental health as grounds for assisted death is likely temporary: Lametti

Senators also suggested the exclusion renders the bill unconstitutional

Claudio Mastronardi, Toronto branch manager at Carmichael Engineering, is photographed at the company’s offices in Mississauga, Ont., Thursday, Nov. 19, 2020. As indoor air quality becomes a major concern in places of business, HVAC companies are struggling to keep up with demand for high quality filtration systems. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Chris Young
Business is booming for HVAC companies as commercial buildings see pandemic upgrades

‘The demand right now is very high. People are putting their health and safety ahead of cost’

Cannabis bought in British Columbia (Ashley Wadhwani/Black Press Media)
Is it time to start thinking about greener ways to package cannabis?

Packaging suppliers are still figuring eco-friendly and affordable packaging options that fit the mandates of Cannabis Regulations

Join Black Press Media and Do Some Good
Join Black Press Media and Do Some Good

Pay it Forward program supports local businesses in their community giving

Bank of Montreal, located on Burrard Street in downtown Vancouver. (Google Maps)
Heiltsuk man files human rights complaint against Vancouver police, BMO after bank arrest

Pair remains distraught after employee falsely reports fraud in progress leading to their arrest

RCMP Cpl. Cory Lepine pictured at BC Livestock Producers Co. in Kamloops, Nov. 16. (Phil McLachlan - Black Press Media)
Meet B.C.’s only cowboy cop; a voice for the livestock industry

Cpl. Cory Lepine serves as a bridge between the law and those who make a living off the land

BCHL pushes back season start due to provincial health orders

The delay is minimal, just six days, for now. But the league is open to starting up after Christmas

Most Read