Picture Perfect

Last week, with Easter approaching, I was inspired to create a pretty floral arrangement for the entry of our home.  My husband and sons were traveling in Asia on business, and planning to return the night before Easter - a few special touches would welcome them back for a very simple holiday.  A favorite arrangement I love recreating every year adds color, whimsy, and tradition -  several bunches of multicolored tulips surrounded with plastic Easter eggs placed in the water around the stems. It’s a fun presentation and I admit I was pretty proud of the result.  (When you grow up with a mother who is a floral designer, you don't have to learn to do many of these arrangements yourself.)  So, in my "proud as a peacock" moment I snapped a photo and posted it to Instagram and Facebook. As the likes started coming in, I looked a little more closely at my Easter arrangement. Oh no! There isn't a pink egg showing on this side to match the pink tulip!

Shoot! There are two purple eggs on that side!

Whatttt was I thinking!?  How could I have posted this?  Why didn't I move the votives out of the shot? Does that gold mirror clash? Why didn't I look more carefully?  Why didn't I style it?  Should I have used a filter?  Should I take it down and fix it and post it again?  Will anyone notice if I do that?!   Blah blah blah blah blah…STOP!!!! Breathe.....

I calmed myself down, realizing that so much of what we see these days is so "filtered" and "overstyled"  that I was actually questioning something really ridiculous.  I became curious about how often I might shift into this mindset - the need to over style or over edit things to be perfect. I once posted a picture of one of the most beautiful people I know, and they were disappointed that I hadn't used the Facetune app. (believe me, they looked amazing)  I'm not dissing Facetune or filters or editing tools - and using enhancements can be fun once in a while - but I realized how much this notion of needing our photos and lives "styled"  and "perfect" can seep into our consciousness even at the most elementary level … A flower arrangement! Really, Jane?

I left the picture where it was.  I stopped worrying about it, instead of entering the crazy-making obsession of perfection.  I now look at the photo and love its authenticity – and that it was a snapshot of my happy labor of love.  Just the fact that I got it done was a miracle to celebrate! And the reality is my mismatched tulip-and-Easter-egg arrangement got the most important likes of all when my family came home.