I'm one of those probably not-so-rare people who needs boundaries and deadlines in order to make things happen, because I'm exactly 0% self-motivated when it comes to most things. However, for that very reason, I find myself unwilling to actually set those boundaries for myself. It's a vicious cycle of laziness and anxiety. But it's time to break it.
As things are, we've developed regular days and times for baby's bath, for example. (He's doesn't get so insanely dirty yet that daily scrub-downs are necessary, and he might - like his daddy - be prone to dry skin, so why push the envelope?) Regular feeding times are crucial for a baby, especially a formula-fed one, so I've become pretty adept at working my own life around bottles and naps. Still, things fall apart. Laundry piles up. Plans come undone. Photo and writing projects linger in purgatory, wondering silently to themselves if they will ever be complete. Even this blog languishes, perking up like an old lap dog for its once or twice a month visit and petting session.
So, I think it's finally time. It's time to spend a few extra dollars and go pick up one of those giant "mom" calendars. You know what I mean - those ones with daily slots as big as an iPhone for you to write everything in. Dinner plans, doctors' appointments, social events (ha, ha, ha - what are those again?), chores, etc.
Part of the reason for this is, well, housekeeping and homemaking is kind of my full-time gig right now. I'll probably end up having to work part-time once the baby is a little older, unless things change for us financially, but right now, why not do the best I can to make my house a happier place? More welcoming for my husband, who works hard at a job he generally dislikes. More pleasant for myself and my baby, who - at least until spring - spend the majority of our time here. More organized, less stressful, more inviting, less cluttered.
I've always been that awful creative stereotype. The one with clever and fun ideas, the one with half a dozen projects started and three or four more tumbling around in my head at any given time. The one who finally gets that electric storm of inspiration and sits down to write/work/create for hours while the dirty dishes pile up and the curtains collect cat hair. (I mean, even more than usual.) I'm finding now, after years of these fits of productivity mixed with months of sloth, that, well, it's not a great approach.
Slow and steady is supposed to win the race, right? You don't lose weight from a single day of clean-eating after weeks of Egg McMuffins, nor does a novel come from an hour of frenzied, divinely-inspired genius followed by distracted musing. So, what I have to do is create a schedule for myself. An honest-to-goodness, real-life daily schedule with time for cooking, exercising, leisure, housekeeping, prayer, reading, and writing.
Oh my gosh, just seeing that in black and white is terrifying. How do I fit that all in a day? Even without a baby, that would seem impossible.
I guess I'm going to have to start very, very small. Like planning out the week's dinners. And deciding which two weekdays I want to use as laundry days.
Hey - writing this blog is a start, right? Check one thing off my daily list. Now, let's see...can I make two more posts this week?
...and still make sure the cats get fed?