I fight hard against the fallacy of “getting ahead”. And I usually lose.
I’m your typical Type-A gal…loves to-do lists and methodically completes tasks. It’s satisfying. Or it was.
Since I’ve had a baby, completing tasks have become a kind of balancing act–trying to give my boy enough attention (I never want to prioritize a clean house ahead of my babe) and still completing things that need to be done. It has become unfulfilling and I feel I’m on the brink of failing at both. Even times I set aside for fun are marred by the “should be’s” (“I should be insert-task-here”).
Picture this. A warm afternoon, making cupcakes and then sitting on the backporch, enjoying one while the little guy plays next to me. Sounds pleasant. Even beautiful. Well, I can guarantee that I would tarnish it. I would hurry through making the cupcakes so I can “just relax”…and then, once I’m “relaxing”, all I’m thinking about is: what time it is; how much time I can sit here; how long will dinner take to prep; what are we having; does that sound healthy enough; I should really cook with more natural ingredients; does my dh even like it; should I make something else; what else do I have time to make; do I have the ingredients; I’ll check real quick; I might as well start dinner while I’m up…and on, and on, and on. Typical. Surrounded by grace and beauty and yet, I’m consumed with to-dos.
This is no way to live. And no way to raise a child. I want to be done striving. I want to live.
Some ways to help me live:
- I’m diligent about a to-do list but not a gratitude list. Look for beauty. Hunt.
- Stop doing “one more thing”. Set aside time to rest. Seriously.
- Memorize scripture. After E was born, I spent those late nights reciting and memorizing scripture. Over and over. It was my nourishment. And now when life is easier, I pridefully do life without it.
- Observe the Sabbath. Plan for it. The Sabbath with a baby and a husband who works upwards of 70 hours a week looks different than what I imagined but I can’t wait till life looks “right”.
- Listen to music.
How do you maintain perspective? Any suggestions? Is it more natural for you folks who aren’t so type-A?
(Photos: our porch and flowers from our yard)