Where’s my list?
When I was little, I gained huge satisfaction from my chore chart and school schedule. My chore chart had boxes that I got to check off (or put a sticker in, when we had them) as I fulfilled the chore for that particular day. School was more of the same. My mom would tell me how far in each book I needed to be by the end of the week, and I got to schedule how many pages of each subject I would do in a day. Drawing a big X through the completed pages gave me a thrill like no other (can you tell I’m a total nerd?).
When my mom began to teach me more grown up chores, I couldn’t just be told the information. I needed to have it written down step-by-step. I think this is why I’m such a great baker but a lousy cook. Baking is precise; you have to follow the directions perfectly to get perfect results. Cooking is like free-form art (both of which I’m terrible at); some days it takes 2 minutes to sauté onions, other times it takes 5. I never know, so usually Anthony takes over the cooking duties.
As an adult, I have my daily chore chart still. It’s morphed into a list on notebook paper that I’ve put inside a glossy sheet protector. Now, as I complete the chore, I can cross it out with a marker. At the end of the day, I have a page (or, since Joshua’s birth, half a page) of crossed-out chores that I can happily wipe clean for use the next morning. This makes me feel accomplished, and helps keep me on track.
However, it’s really hard when a new life situation arises that I have no idea how to handle. This morning, Anthony and I got some news that will most likely radically change the way we’ve been living. Right now, I want a list. I want step-by-step directions for how this is supposed to work in our world. How are we going to provide for our family, raise godly children, keep up with our social lives, the housework, and, oh yeah, our marriage, with this new dynamic thrown in?!? What’s the next step? What is the first thing I need to cross of my list?