I love the movie Mary Poppins, but I’ve always found Ms. Poppins herself to be a little intimidating. She’s confident, capable, and according to her own magic tape measure… “practically perfect in every way”. Who can compete with that? Not her happy-go-lucky yet irresponsible friend Bert, not her wayward young charges Jane and Michael, not their flighty, righteous-yet-obsequious mother, and certainly not their workaholic, cranky and distant father.

I have to add myself to the list of the imperfect. Well, and almost everyone I know. But there is this one friend of mine who’s pretty special. He’s honest, capable, humble, patient, smart, caring and tolerant. I worked with him for a number of years, and he was so perfect I found it amazing and a little annoying. When I met his wife, and mentioned my impression of him, she said, “I know- isn’t it disgusting!” We laughed because we could both relate to how imperfect we felt. But he assures me that he has his issues and moments too.

So how do we evolve when perfection is (practically) unattainable? I struggled with this challenge over the last year as the vision for TOJACATE became more clear. I began to consider virtues that we would promote as a community, and I kind of tried them on for size. How hard could it be to become more (deep breath here) joyful, compassionate, kind, forgiving, humorous, nurturing, spiritual, responsible, honest, peaceful, patient, grateful, and generous? Pretty difficult and discouraging at times- especially being joyful when life got very stressful, or being patient when I’m not really wired that way.

But at other times, I could feel myself evolving a bit in a good way, stretching out of my comfort zone and becoming a better person (even for just a moment) because I was really reaching for it. I learned I needed to give myself grace to fail and try again. So, I’ve decided to do the best I can each day, and plan to rely on support and encouragement from others along the way. That’s what our new Community Blog is all about. Personal evolution with community support. I’ll be sharing my thoughts on a regular basis, and TOJACATE members are all invited to submit blog posts too. I know you have something great to say! And hey, it doesn’t have to be perfect!