Barbara Billingsley died on Saturday, and she will always be known for her role as the Mom, June Cleaver, in Leave It to Beaver. She was the perfect Mom with the perfect family.
Sure, there were “issues” to address in every 30-minute show; however, in today’s world, the problems solved in their family life were so very minor in nature. Their family was near perfect in almost every way. June Cleaver was a stay-at-home mom; the Dad was home for home-cooked meals every day; and Wally and Beaver were clean-cut, well-mannered boys. Everything seemed to work cleanly and precisely… it was, well, perfect.
Do you ever see those families that seem so very perfect? They seem to consist of well-groomed kids who are well-spoken, well-dressed, and well-behaved. The parents also seem perfect – cozy, beautiful, just have it all together.
From the outside view, you wonder how or why they ended up so perfect. What did they do right? What are we doing wrong?
The problem with the perfect June Cleaver Family perspective is that it doesn’t really exist. Some may be closer than others, but everyone is dealing with behind-the-front-door issues and challenges. Some just have a better image.
When you get a closer look at the “perfect families,” you usually see that there are imperfections, and they are struggling with some of the same challenges you may be. Sometimes, the image glosses over the reality.
I guess the purpose of this post is simply this: Having the perfect family may look really good, but perfection is over-rated. The imperfections are what make life interesting and add the “color” to otherwise black-and-white family shows.
The other point is that there may be more color to those seemingly perfect families than you imagine. You just may not see it. From time to time, a crack may appear, and then you catch a glimpse of imperfection in their family life.
So, do your best with the family you have. Talk to other parents; share and learn from each other including how to work through the imperfections taking place.
Just remember, perfect families are non-existent. Families are imperfect because of what they are – different people with different personalities with different goals all mixed together within a 2,400 square foot space or less trying to express individuality while building a way to make all lives better.
God bless Barbara Billingsley and her family as well as all of our imperfect ones.