Monday, November 8, 2010

The miraculous power of to-do lists

I've always been a fan of to-do lists.  When I was a kid and bored in class, I'd write out my schedule for the night as such:
3:15 get home
3:20 change clothes
3:30 watch Shee-Ra Princess of Power
4pm start math homework
4:30 do history homework
5pm eat dinner
5:30 practice piano
and so on it went, the whole night blocked out into neat little 15 or 30 minute segments.  Now it's harder to do that, because in real-life jobs we tend to get interrupted which puts us off track (that's one reason I hate answering the phone so much), so I've turned to basic to-do lists.  I keep my work to-do list on my google calendar, and my personal one is in my journal.  When I'm journaling in the morning, I always take time to write out the things I want to accomplish that day.

To Do Lists have become very important to me lately.  I write everything on them.  Feed the cats, which happens twice a day, goes on the To Do List, twice.  Feed the Cats AM and Feed the Cats PM.  Doing the litter twice also goes on, twice.  So does taking a bath, filling the cats' water bowls, doing the breakfast dishes, cooking dinner, and doing my laundry.

Why have I started listing nearly everything but breathing in my To Do List?  Because of the satisfaction I get when I cross it off.  I've been feeling so useless lately, so guilty and completely dysfunctional, that the rush I get from crossing something off a list makes me feel human again.  It makes me feel like I can do this.  I can get through life.  I can function like a normal adult.  I can remember to feed the cats, ergo I can remember to do my job.  I can clean the litter box, ergo I can get pregnant and carry a baby to term.

It makes me feel like I'm doing something, and not just withering away into a shell of misery and hopelessness.  I am taking a bath and reading a book, dammit!  I went out to get coffee this morning!  And remembered my ATM code when I got cash back.  I can handle this living thing.  Hey!  I did my laundry!  I must be useful!  There must be a purpose to this whole living-with-ridiculous-pain stuff.

In other news, tonight is the first night of my support group for parents who lost babies.  And, I guess, that would be us.  I now fit into a new demographic.

No pictures from me today, but I am a huge fan of Joe Cornish, who photographs landscapes in northeastern England. I bought a bunch of his cards and prints in a shop in Scarborough and still have them up everywhere.  This one's my favorite.  Enjoy the peacefulness.

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