A former boss of mine required his employees to keep to-do lists, and we'd report on them at our weekly staff meetings. (Click here and here to read more about that job...you won't regret it! There are probably more posts that refer to it, but those are the two I found in a quick search. ☺) As you can imagine, I thrived in that environment. My memory fails me often - it did before I was pregnant, you know about "pregnancy brain," and now I've got the "Mom brain" going for me. Lists not only help me remember to do things, but they also give me a sense of purpose and accomplishment. The visual of the tasks I plan to complete is a small representation of my place in the world, and as you may be able to relate to, crossing items off my list(s) is a representation of accomplishment.
So, all that said, it should come as no surprise to know I nearly always have a written to-do list (or two or three) somewhere in our home. This, of course, does not include the home improvement project list we've kept since moving into this house, the list of meals my husband has requested, the list of restaurants we want to try, etc. etc. ☺ My to-do lists have always included a variety of items, from event planning to household chores to correspondence I hope to make...the list goes on and on (pun intended).
Lately, however, my list has been fairly short (feed baby, sleep, eat, change diapers)...and hasn't (*gasp*) been written down. The other day, however, I had a few things I wanted to accomplish, so I made a list for the first time in a few weeks. It was still short, but it included a few non-baby-related things that needed to be done and could realistically be accomplished in my few moments of spare time. It also included, however, the following two items: "pump" and "shower." The "pump" refers to the daily task of pumping extra milk between morning feedings. The "shower" refers to the not-so-daily luxury of bathing. Ha.
Anyway, what surprised me about this (and the reason I'm writing about it) was the fact that I didn't think twice when writing these two items on my to-do list. The pumping is new, of course, but even though it's something that has become routine, completing the task still gives me a sense of accomplishment. And the shower? This is something I would've laughed about adding to a to-do list prior to birthing a child. But, now, having/taking time to do this small item of self-care gives me a great sense of accomplishment...which is why I added it to the list without even thinking.
I'll be honest and tell you this transition into motherhood hasn't been easy. Yes, there are postpartum hormones that play into it, but there's definitely been some confusion/heartache/anxiety/mourning/etc. in figuring out and wrapping my mind (and heart) around my new role. I recently told a fellow new mom I was having a bit of trouble figuring out my new identity, and she gently reminded me that our identity need only be in Christ. Duh, Kensy! Of course, I know this, and try my best to put it into practice, but in these moments of wondering if I'm "enough" as this baby's mom, wondering if I'm still fulfilling my role as a wife, wondering if I'll ever feel like I'm contributing outside of our home, wondering if I'm keeping up with friendships...none of it matters. I am a child of God - first, foremost, and most importantly. My new role as a mother is an extension of my ministry on this earth - just like my role as a wife, friend, teacher, etc.
Still lots of "things" to figure out and get used to, but that's nothing new - life always brings change and learning opportunities. It's the subjects (the "things") of those changes and opportunities that are new.
As always, I appreciate you reading and bearing with my sometimes-convoluted thoughts. ♥