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Friday, October 18, 2013

To-Do Lists and Stairway to Paradise

I feel mired this week. I just can’t seem to get anything done. The to-do list keeps splintering into ever more branches.  Our drying rack broke, necessitating a boring, stupid errand to replace it, but a simple one. You would think. But there doesn’t seem to exist a replacement for it. I went to Lowe’s, but the racks there were too small. So I went to Walmart, and I found one, except all the boxes were open or dented; plus, it needed assembly. Nevertheless, I selected the least-dented box and I traipsed the miles of registers to find one open and discovered the only open ones were at the farthest point from the door near which I’d parked and they all had several people in line. For some reason, I hadn’t taken a cart when I entered the emporium, so I was carrying this box. All that traveling and carrying gave me time to think, and what I thought was that I had no interest in buying a box of aluminum rods that would have to be assembled. The result would undoubtedly be a rickety, poor replacement for the fantastic, most perfectest laundry drying rack ever created. Except that it broke, so it wasn’t perfect. But it was closer to perfect than the dented box of aluminum rods in my arms, and also, come to think of it, less broken than that, too. After all, last I saw it, my broken drying rack was mostly assembled. So I left the box and marathoned my way back across the store and went home. Energy and time expended, job still undone.

The week has been like that.

Add to that my new normal sleep pattern, which seems to be a decent night’s sleep on alternate nights, interwoven with total wide awake insomnia on the other nights. Thank you, perimenopause.

Then there was the realization that I’ve been operating as chauffeur without the full schedule of events for the 10th grader’s ballet because we were out of town for a particular meeting at which a particular list of events was distributed; and because the parent who is in charge of distributing updates and information via email is a little bit distracted this year because her child is applying to college. So I had to scramble for information and rides and then ask for the missing list. Which I have yet to input into my electronic calendar or my marvelous new planner made out of paper. Then there was an email listing exactly sixty three trillion and seven soccer practices, which I have yet to input. That’s for the 6th grader. Who also just auditioned for the school musical and now will have to check the website every day for those practices. Do I need to reschedule French horn lessons?

There was more. So much more. Yet nothing accomplished. Kind of like the government, if you think about it. And kind of like a government employee, I was working without pay.

But you don’t come here to read my complaints, Readers. I’m aware that my life is good. Despite these periods of churning and frustration, things are okay. Sure, I’d like a little more consistent sleep. Sure, I’d like never to step foot in Walmart again.  Sure, I’d like to publish a book and earn some money. Sure, I understand the latter is not contingent upon the former. I do have a spiffy new planner that has lots of list-making space. I'll start by updating my to-do list. And if I’ve learned anything about life on this journey to perimenopause, it’s that when I feel mired and unproductive, making a list is a first step towards feeling better. A list is like a ladder, if you think about it. So before you can put foot to rung, you’ve got to have a ladder. After that, it’s just one foot in front of the other.

Did I manage something profound? No? Well, I tried. Listen to Rufus. He's more entertaining than I.

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