Our heating and air conditioning system is slowly going out. Someone is supposed to come Monday at 10 - or is it Tuesday? - to give us a quote on a new one. The dashboard light keeps coming on in the car, but then it goes off so I'm not sure what to do about it. We have an appointment next week that overlaps with something else. I need to figure that out. I was planning to make spaghetti for dinner, but I really need to run to the grocery for some salad to go with it. I really need to move that load of laundry from the washer to the dryer. I have to get all Cooper's paperwork together to get him registered for kindergarten next month. Zack hasn't finished his homework for tonight - I need to check on that. Oh man! I forgot to pick up lightbulbs when I was out earlier, and I think we are low on paper towels. R's birthday is coming up - I have no idea what to get him.
These thoughts and a million more just like them swirl through my head every day. Some days, just the basic logistics of life seem like too much to manage. Go here, do this, take care of that, deal with this, then just when you think you have a plan in place - BAM! Life throws you a curveball in the form of an unexpected this or a broken that.
Sometimes it all just seems like too much.
Sometimes it IS too much, and I feel so overwhelmed by it all that I don't know how to manage.
Some days I don't manage, choosing instead to procrastinate or ignore it all or hide my head in the sand and hope it all just goes away.
It never does, though.
Then I'm left standing there, dripping wet sand on the rug and still needing to find a plumber, schedule an appointment, make dinner, whatever.
I think I used to be better at this sort of thing. For more than a decade I managed a big bookstore, complete with scheduling and ordering and repairing and customer servicing and hiring and dealing with all other manners of chaos, and I was pretty good at it.
Now all I have to manage is my house and the logistics of my little family of four, and I feel like I can't even deal with it sometimes.
I used to have a staff of forty people, all with different personalities and strengths and weaknesses and quirks and I was able to deal with it just fine. Now the two children that I have birthed and raised myself seem like too many to handle.
I used to walk my 20,000 square foot bookstore with an eagle eye, picking out every single book out of place, empty spot and area in need of housekeeping, but now my little 1,900 square foot house is constantly dusty, dirty, messy, piled with things.
I used to be responsible for ordering thousands of dollars worth of merchandise and supplies, always keeping the top titles in stock without running out. Now I struggle to keep enough milk, or bread, or eggs, or whatever in my house to feed the four of us.
I used to be better at dealing with things, I think. Maybe it was out of necessity. Or maybe I've just used up all those abilities. Whatever the reason, I just seem to be having a hard time getting things done lately.
My to-do lists grow, only to be ignored. Other times I can't even seem to be bothered to write down the things I know I won't do, or to list the things I probably won't go out to buy.
Sometimes I feel so inundated with the stuff that needs my attention all I can do it ignore it all.
The problem though, is that the longer it's ignored, the more urgent it becomes, then I find myself scrambling, always scrambling. It's a feeling I hate more than anything, but somehow lately I keep putting myself in that position by my inability to just GET STUFF DONE.
But all of it - the stuff that needs to be taken care of - waits for me still.