Most of the time I am 1000% certain that I am a total shoo-in if and when someone is recruiting for an entertainer, and more specifically, a juggler. Balls in the air, my arms extended and catching the balls before they hit the ground, I just know I can nail it and keep the audience enthused the entire time. After all, isn’t that what I do pretty much every day? More to the point, isn’t that what many (most?!) working Moms do every day? My “balls” are meaningful. They include my two young daughters, my thriving insurance agency, the team I have supporting me, the agency and our clients, my partner with whom I share the good times with the not-so-good, and of course, my friends and family, both near and far.
My brain will not give me permission to drop any of my balls, and so I continue to refine my juggling skills. I speak with other men and women that have to manage the same juggling “act,” I read books and watch videos that present best practices, and I try to keep myself healthy mentally, physically, and spiritually.
It seems to me that if we see a “real” juggler fumble during their act, we feel a certain amount of discomfort on their behalf, knowing that they are probably embarrassed to have made such an error in front of an audience.
Well, try as we might, we parent jugglers can fumble too, and we will often feel far worse than any juggler that messed up on stage. After all, many in the audience are probably saying to themselves, “he/she’s only human” or “it can happen” but not so much when parent jugglers drop any ball at all.
In most of those situations we receive disapproval, often from those that we crave assurance that we’re not as bad as we are making ourselves out to be.
Juggling is difficult and should be recognized as so. We need to support one another and learn to forgive ourselves when we inadvertently drop a ball.
Letting go of the idea that only 100% perfection will do is the first step. Knowing how to pick up a dropped ball is number two.
I’m learning how to do both right now.