Being renters and frequent movers, we have never had a wall on which we marked the growth of the boys. This past month we read The Story of Ferdinand by Munro Leaf.
I headed out to the hardware store and picked up a 6-foot-long plank of wood. We measured out 6 segments and each of the boys painted 2 sections in a very special color he had picked out all by himself at the craft store. Then they painted the lines all the way up marking the inches and feet.
The paint colors don't really coordinate. There are places where the paint is smeared. In other spots, the paint doesn't fully cover the wood. Sometimes one boy didn't stay within the "lines" very well. It is far from perfect. It may not even be beautiful.
It was exactly how I wanted it to be. If I had wanted it to be perfect, I could have bought a fabulous one designed by somebody who knew what she was doing. Just search "growth chart" on Etsy, and you will see. Some of my cousins even have a business making just this sort of thing. There is no shortage of amazing or adorable growth charts. If I didn't want to shell out the cash, I still could have insisted that the chart have a particular look that would perfectly compliment the decor. I could have picked out the colors, done the painting, and even some distressing or finishing touches to make it look just so.
Isn't part of why I do what I do with homeschooling to allow them to learn who they are and how to express that? Isn't part of it to allow them to learn how to paint, build, and create?
It isn't about having a perfectly beautiful home. It's about loving the perfect imperfection that is our life and our learning and our growing.
It's about learning that it doesn't have to be perfect. It doesn't even have to be beautiful. It just has to be ours.
Because aren't we all perfectly imperfect? Aren't we still growing and changing and learning with every day? Aren't there parts of who we are that are smeared, smudged, chipped, or even mangled? As we go through this day-to-day, year-to-year chaos that is growing up (yes, I think we are always "growing", never "grown"), we are never going to be perfect. There are many times we will not be beautiful. But we are loved by the one who Created us and who loves to see our growth.