I love lists. Lists make me happy. Although my cousin/best friend/college roommate Emily used to tease me mercilessly about my compulsive list-making, she could never tease me out of it. Lists bring me clarity.
So this morning, being unclear (a common thing, it seems), I sat down and made a list. Actually, that is misleading. I ate breakfast, chatted with Lia about the merits of peanut butter and jelly vs. peanut butter and applesauce, rescued mushed banana from falling on the carpet (although, unfortunately, not from Amelie’s shirt), and did the dishes one-handed with a baby on my hip…while making the list.
My first list was looked thus:
Things I Would Expect of a Babysitter,
Hired to Care for My Children During Normal Working Hours
Cook nutritious lunch
Take kids on outings
Play with children
Keep house tidy
Be focused on children
Listen to children
My next list looked like this:
Things I Additionally Expect of Myself,
Including The Extra 16 Hours Per Day
Errands & appointments
Maintain a blog
Expand personal horizons through study and thought
Organize & declutter house
Maintain a garden
Communicate with family and friends
Teach music lessons & children’s choir
Be a good wife
Bathe the children
At which point I gave up making the list. Clarity had arrived.
The question isn’t: Am I a failure because I feel overwhelmed sometimes?
The question is: You mean you only feel overwhelmed SOMETIMES?
Holy cow, this job is harder than I thought.