Sunday, September 07, 2008

On being anal-retentive.

On the surface (like, to people who have never been to my house) I often look really organized. At least, it seems that way to me, because people will say, "Wow, you are really organized." I carry around a huge planner, which I call "My Brain",,,seriously, I've been known to run through the house, digging frantically through piles, saying, "Has anyone seen My Brain?",,,I have a system/check list for everything I do, from meals to housecleaning (daily/weekly/monthly/and seasonal!), daily schedules, etc. But I'm not truly organized, not really. The truth is that I have to compensate, heavily, for my LACK OF natural organization. If I plan these things really well, and try mightily to follow The Plan in spite of my tendency towards procrastination, I might actually accomplish 80% of The Plan. This is important, because when I don't follow The Plan, things fall apart.

Case in point...this morning. I made a list in yesterday's post of what I needed to get done this weekend. I got the cleaning done. I got Mount Laundry pretty much all done, i.e., I threw the last load in the washer this morning. Nothing has been folded yet, and all my desk work still awaits me. It took me all day to get the cleaning done around the regular Care and Feeding of Children. Anyway, this morning Kain had his first morning back at PSR (Catholic Sunday school, for my Separated Brethern Readers). This meant we had to be at the church at 8:45 instead of the 10am time we'd become accustomed to all summer. John was/is at work. Maria was/is visiting my parents. So I was on my own with the three younger kids. And the morning was a total wash because I was not following The Plan and haven't been for a week. Well, nearly a wash...I did get to receive the Eucharist,,,just barely, in between hauling Jack out of mass for various misbehaviors. Three year olds are truly wild. Anyway. Where was I?

Oh yes. The Plan, or lack thereof. Well, first of all, since I was running around like crazy playing catch up yesterday, I didn't get to bed until midnight, which means I did not get up quite on time. I still did have *enough* time, but I made a bad situation worse by breaking one of the cardinal rules in our house, No Computer Before Mass. Kain did point this out to me, but I silenced him with a glare over my cup of coffee and logged on anyway. I was just wanting to make a quick email check on a very pregnant friend (yes, another one), but the computer, being the giant timesucker that it is....well, I made myself very late. All of a sudden it was 8am, and we had to leave in 30 minutes. And we were all still in pajamas.

And here's where the lack of The Plan made things even worse. Because I had to quickly formulate a New Last Minute Plan, and those are always stressful. First, I had to dig boy clothes out from the now-clean Mount Laundry. If I had been following The Plan, the clothes would have been done and put away and I wouldn't have spent 10 minutes hunting down tiny navy blue socks. I quickly dressed Jack, laid out clothes for Kain, and threw some toast in the toaster oven for me (the boys had eaten). I packed the diaper bag with Magnifikids, saints books and a pre-mass snack for Jack, put together the offering envelopes and gathered some change for the boys to put in the children's offering. When following The Plan, these things are all made ready the night before. Because it's on the Saturday Evening List, that's why.

At that point, it was 8:20. I had to or Tess. Tess was asleep. She had woken up at 6am, nursed, and gone back to sleep. I thought briefly of dropping Kain off and then coming back home to shower, we do live close to the church, but I would easily lose 15 minutes just from having to load/unload/reload Jack and Tess in the van. So, I grabbed her clothes and a diaper to stuff in my diaper bag, praised God for the breastfeeding that allowed her to eat easily on the fly, and jumped in for a quick shower that wasn't as quick as it could have been since I had hardly any water pressure due to the load of laundry in the washer at the time. At 8:40, I plucked her, still sleeping, out of her crib and put her into the carseat and rounded boys out to the car with a carseat in one hand, a cup of coffee in the other, an overflowing diaper bag on my shoulder, and a piece of toast clenched in my teeth. I dropped Kain off, just 4 minutes late, and then turned Jack loose to push random console buttons in the van while I nursed and dressed Tess and wished my hair dry.

So, we made it, but it was stressful, not a great start to Sunday. It's time to get back on The Plan. And that means staying off the computer for the rest of the day.

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