She Runs A Good Race

mothering is a marathon

Pretty On The Outside But…

on January 10, 2014

IMG_4843Don’t judge us by our Christmas card. 

We look pretty perfect.  Like the quintessential all-American family.  Don’t we?

The only thing missing in the picture is our adorable, chocolate labradoodle, Gracie, with a Christmas bandana around her neck.

It’s a great picture, if I do-so-narcissistically-say-so myself, as the mother in this photogenic crew.


Just because I know how to pull together coordinating outfits and shoes, hire a professional photographer, and put lots of make-up on and smile just right, does not a perfect family make.

You know that and I know that.

But why do we ASSUME that because “someone is cute and wears designer jeans” as Glennon Doyle Melton ( says, “that they have it all together?”

There’s a quote that keeps getting passed around Facebook.  I love it.  It’s truth.  Listen to it:


For us Patays, the obvious battle I am so vocal about is living with Ryan’s disability (Prader-Willi syndrome.)  If you have been following my blog long enough, you know how much I vomit it all out.  But of course, there’s a thousand other battles going on in our family.

And yours.

Don’t be afraid to share, to vent, to offer honest stories and struggles.

Because EVERYONE and every family has something going on in their lives that make them uncomfortable.  No one family or marriage is perfect.

Let me say that again.  No family is perfect.  Nobody is perfect. No one’s life is perfect.  No matter how “pretty” you are, with a pretty house, and pretty garden, with pretty circumstances, you all struggle with something.  We ALL do.  I know I do.

Do you have anyone in your life that you openly and freely share without any filtering and photo-shopping?

Why not be vocal?  Why not share?  Why not try vulnerability and a little transparency?

We all like to post about our food, our restaurants, our genius and athletic kids, our vacations, our homes, and our oh-so-fun social lives on Facebook.  (Ok, not EVERYONE is on FB, and a sick, serial post-er like me, but you get what I mean.)  Why not post your struggle, your weakness, your failure?  Not in a poor-me way, but in an attempt to show your humanness and connect with others in such a humbling way?  For 2014, lets all give up pretending, masking, and posturing.  Just be who you are.

Who wants to go first?  I will hold your hand.  And be non-judgmental.  I will cry, laugh, and listen, listen, listen. To your heart.  Now give it a try.

6 responses to “Pretty On The Outside But…

  1. Erin Timberlake says:

    I miss you!! I hope to see you next week! I will also be back in LA the week of Jan 27. Are you around? I would love to catch up!

    Sent from my iPhone

  2. Love this! Thanks Jessica!

  3. Jan Schlesinger says:

    You never cease to amaze me! Jan😊

    Sent from my iPhone

  4. Gayle says:

    We adopted a dog last Friday who is strikingly beautiful. We had to return him to the rescue shelter today because he tried to attack several people while out walking and actually bit one woman (fortunately she is ok). There’s something ugly in his past. I don’t know what his (not-so) silent battle is. My tearful daughter summed up the experience as “pretty isn’t everything.” Your poignant blog hit home – true for canines as well as humans. Thank you! – Gayle

  5. justinebien says:

    I totally agree. It’s so fake, unreal on Facebook. Everybody is so cute, beautiful. I’ve a 4 months old Helen with PWS and she is my only child without a photo on facebook. I was afraid.

  6. justinebien says:

    I totally agree. I am a mother of 4 months old Helen with PWS and she is my only child without photo on Facebook. I was afraid. It is so fake, unreal, life via Facebook.

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