LOPSIDED: leaning to one side; lacking in balance, symmetry, or proportion; disproportionately heavy on one side
In my perfect world, things are tidy. Straight. Evenly spaced. Symmetrical. Labeled. With typed labels. In a consistent font. Preferably san serif.
But, I live in the real world – with children. So, my neurotic nirvana remains mostly out of reach. Sure, the kids’ toy bins are labeled and I re-arrange my canning jars when one shelf gets so empty that it throws off the balance of the pantry…but mostly I have learned to live lopsided. The hamper has too many clothes; the closet too few. The floor has heaps of toys while my carefully labeled all-the-same-size-and-lid-color totes sit empty. There are books on the tables and dishes on the shelves.
Every year in December the voices in my head do battle. In one corner: Joyful. Gloved up and ready for a fight in the other corner: Just Right. Can I let the kids help decorate the tree and fireplace? Without me assigning the precise placement of each ornament? Or, do I squash their enthusiasm and eagerness with too much direction? Can I accept the adorable ceramic stockings dangling from a less than ideal branch that Son deemed “perfect”? Can I allow Daughter to hang three balls of the same size and color in the same quadrant of the tree while grinning from ear to ear? Can I embrace the Star Wars ship that I can never remember the name of in a place of honor on the mantel?
I am proud to say that this year I was able to answer “yes” a record number of times. Sure, I reviewed “guiding principles” for decorating the tree and assigned Nonna as Daughter’s shadow to re-direct any truly atrocious choices. But, Just Right took a sound licking and Joyful emerged victorious.
And, in the end the tree is perfect…when you view it from our front door. With your head tilted slightly to the left.