I have a favorite IKEA bag. It’s a little, reusable shopping bag that folds into a pocket. I’ve had it for years and I love it. It’s part of my everyday carry and I’ve used it to carry library books, groceries, and when foraging.

Things that get loved hard end up needing repairs after a while. I was on a hike with my family and my son started collecting rocks and sticks, more than he could carry. And so, out came the IKEA bag, which he then proceeded to drag all over the countryside. Thus the hole in the bottom of it.

I’m not one to just throw a bag out because it has a hole. And even if I was, I’d be loathe to do it with this bag. The nearest IKEA is two hours away now. Besides, they don’t carry this bright purple color any more.

So, mending it is.

I tried to be as careful and neat as possible, but I also knew that if I worried too much about what it would look like on the outside that I would never get started. The end result is not pretty, but it is functional.

I tell myself that 99% of people won’t even notice the mending at all. And of the people who might, most won’t have an opinion one way or another on how it looks. It’s a lesson in remembering that desiring perfection often gets in the way of our doing a thing. If we can’t do it correctly, we don’t want to do it. Social media, with its filtered reality, would have us think that everyone is out there living life superbly, with nothing mended, everything pretty.

If only we saw the dozens of takes that preceded the final photo. I think that’s one of the reasons I often post my failures, my imperfect fixes, my out of focus photos to IG and elsewhere. So people can see that life doesn’t have to be picture perfect to be worth documenting.

If you have been putting off a task because you are concerned about how it will turn out, let this be the sign that you should go ahead and do it anyway.