"If you wish to be loved, show more of your faults than your virtues."
-Edward G. Bulwer-Lytton
One of my favorite memories happened at spring break during my junior year of high school. I had a close-knit group of friends and we were inseparable. We stayed up all night at my friend's house and I ended up asking my parents if I could spend the night. Of course, leaving out a few details about the fact that it was a co-ed sleepover. (Can my parents still ground me?!) I was told I could stay. We all stayed up way too late, laughed way too loud, and made some fantastic memories. I ended up getting stuck on large blow up mattress in the living room next to Drae. I had no idea I would marry him one day. I didn't even know we would date. (Don't worry Mom. My virtue was still safe that night. Haha!) We laid awake and made stupid jokes until we both passed out.
Then came morning.
I woke to the strong, sickly sweet smell of maple bacon. Now, not many people know this but my stomach is EXTREMELY sensitive in the morning. I mean so sensitive that I immediately began dry-heaving at the smell. When I say immediately, I mean immediately. My hair was in one huge rat's nest, my morning breath was atrocious, and I'm pretty sure my makeup from the night before had melted down my face.
After my dry-heaving session, I left in a hilarious whirlwind of laughter and shame.
Years later, I learned that staying that night (and heaving the next morning) may have created my destiny.
"You know," Drae told me one day. "That was the day I knew I wanted to date you. You were fun and nerdy and really cute. I felt comfortable with you."
I almost choked when he said this to me.
"YOU MEAN MY BACON REPULSION SEALED THE DEAL?!"
Perfection sneaks up on us everywhere. "Reality" television stars stumble out of bed with full makeup, complete with a set of false lashes. Celebrities with airbrushed six packs strut across the pages of the tabloids. Bone-thin models flash their pearly whites (among other things) down the runway.
And then there are people like me.
I drag myself into my wheelchair, wince as I roll past the mirror and witness the rooster-like hair and drool-crusted cheek staring back at me. Get washed up and paint on the makeup for 20 painstaking minutes, in an attempt to achieve what? Perfection? Who am I kidding??
Perfection does not exist.
But sometimes, in those moments of what we consider imperfection, a perfect moment happens.
I would consider almost blowing chunks the morning after a sleep over a DEFINITE moment of imperfection. But that night, and that lovely morning moment, created a spark between Drae and I.
If my friend's mom had made scrambled eggs instead of maple bacon, who knows where I'd be today.
Don't spend your whole life trying to create a facade of perfection. People don't fall in love with shiny bits of plastic. People fall in love with uniqueness, silliness, confidence, and those imperfect perfect moments.