It's like I'm embarrassed to exist, to put myself out there, to dare to try. While working on this website I often felt silly that I was creating a website for my work. Like who am I to have an entire website dedicated to my work? Who told me that I was worthy of a website, that my work was good enough? So when I finally finished the website I didn't want to show anyone. Even though I was proud of it I assumed people would look at it and find all of the flaws. I'm not a developer so I'm sure there are things that I haven't done perfectly. But the underlying feeling was judgement. I was so scared that people would look at it and laugh.
Last year when I self-published my first poetry collection 'but maybe you already knew this' I asked a designer friend of mine to create a cover. She created a gorgeous cover but when I went to print it things went a bit pear shaped. I'm not very good with Photoshop and file sizes and types so I did my best but I sent a smaller file size than necessary to the printers resulting in a somewhat grainy cover page. When I went to pick up the order I was almost in tears. In my mind it was ruined because it wasn't perfect. I stomped around my house ranting and raving about what an idiot I was and how this was all my fault. My boyfriend tried to remind me that the important thing was that I had published it. That it existed in a physical form that people could read. That doing that was an accomplishment in itself. And he was right. When I showed my friends or people bought it from me at an arts trail, no one said anything. My paranoid mind was trying to tell me this was because they were being polite or that they didn't want to hurt my feelings but they were still judging it and me.
That's how perfectionism works. It steals all the joy from creating something by convincing you that it's not good enough. That only if it's perfect right away is it worth anything. That you're only worth something if your work is perfect.
I'm trying to embrace my imperfections and not be embarrassed by them. I'm trying to accept that as a human I'm going to screw up and that's OK. And even that imperfections don't mean I've screwed up. I'm still learning. The important thing about this website is that it's able to showcase my writing. The important thing about my poetry chapbook is that it's the culmination of years of work. The content is the main thing. The aesthetic? Well, that's just the surface.