Thursday, September 27, 2012

A Funeral I Won't Forget

"Sometimes doing your best is not good enough. Sometimes you must do what is required." - Winston Churchill

I heard this quote today at a funeral and it hit me with such force that I took out my phone and made a note so I would remember it and could tell you about it.

I know that every medical spouse tries to do their best. If you are like me, it often feels like it isn't enough. The last part of the quote is where I feel I have been operating for the last few years. I am doing what is required, not necessarily my best.

The speaker at the funeral was talking about this quote of terms of our body and mind limitations. That we are capable of going further and doing more than we think we can. That we give up far too soon and think we have done our best when our best is yet to be revealed.

I can see and appreciate that. But, there comes a point when your best has truly been exhausted and you are running on fumes taking care of the necessities and leaving some things undone. It is a choice we have to make if we are to survive.

Sometimes I get overwhelmed trying to do my perceived best. I stress myself and my family out when I expect to be on my A-game in every situation. I don't allow myself to expose my flaws. I try to present myself, my family, my life as the best version of myself (which is usually only present a small percentage of the time). When I expect too much it inevitably leads to frustration and disappointment and that isn't helping anyone.

When I can focus on what is REQUIRED at any given moment I am usually much happier and less concerned with my performance and more focused on getting the job done. At the end of the day isn't that what matters - that what needed to get done was done? The other stuff is all fluff and elective.

I am sure that I have taken this quote and completely altered it's meaning from the original intent. Mr. Churchill would probably roll over in his grave if he read this interpretation. He would be screaming "that isn't what I meant - you should and can do more, not less!"

Sorry Winston, what is required is the best I can do today and that has to be good enough.



  1. Well said - these thoughts tend to roll around in my head daily. Just take one day at a time and we do our best for that day!!!! Happiness with ourselves and our family is what is important.

    1. It's funny when I start looking around at what is really required it is the simple stuff. Doing what is required isn't hard. It becomes hard when we start confusing what is important and what isn't.

  2. I learned that ten years ago. I only do what's required for those things no one will ever remember. Why bust your hiney for something no one will remember your extra efforts? I save my best and my energy for those special and important occasions. There's absolutely no shame in it. Women are expected to do so much today. There's just not enough time in the day to do it all.

    1. I am always harder of myself than is necessary. And you are right there just isn't enough time to do it all, and no one is going to remember that it took me four hours to make and wrap treat bags just so they could be destroyed and devoured in less than 10 minutes and thrown in the trash at a class party. We have to pick and choose what we do and hope that all the required stuff gets done. At this point in the game, I have little patience for fluff. We don't do birthday parties every year for that very reason. Life starts feeling like a competition instead of a celebration. Don't get me wrong, I like it - but I've had to figure out how much is too much.

  3. Perfection. We all want it, but it's so unrealistic. :) Great post!!


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