My To-Do List

This morning, following my husband’s example, I decided to make a list of all the tasks, duties and priorities I am aware of in my life. Surely there is something I’ve forgotten… but, to modify a quote by Tommy Lee Jones in No Country for Old Men, “If this ain’t a list, it’ll do ’til the list gets here.”

e’s To-Do List

Be a Good Mother

  1. Be loving and supportive unconditionally at all times forever
  2. Ensure all physical needs are met at all times
  3. Teach life skills, social strategies
  4. Listen and have meaningful conversations, develop critical thinking
  5. Play
  6. Set boundaries, impose consequences, teach values
  7. Inspire, encourage, feed on all levels
  8. Monitor scheduling
  9. Chauffer

Be a Good Wife

  1. Be the loving, supportive & compelling best friend he wants/needs at all times
  2. Cultivate intimacy on all levels (physical, emotional, intellectual)
  3. Listen
  4. Trust
  5. Maintain healthy, happy household with income provided
  6. Put my skills/abilities at his disposal at all times
  7. Find stuff

Run a Healthy, Happy Household

  1. Clean – as much as possible
  2. Feed – as healthy and delicious as possible
  3. Budget, pay bills, economize
  4. Restock supplies and organize
  5. Cultivate a loving, comfortable, inspiring atmosphere
  6. Garden & landscaping

Be a good person

  1. Be a loving, supportive friend, neighbor, extended family member
  2. Improve my character through study, contemplation & self-reflection
  3. Respond to requests for help when possible
  4. Share insight through writing and conversation

Build a freelance language empire

  1. Network – make connections by any means necessary
  2. Continue to improve my language, teaching and translating skills
  3. Generate opportunity/ideas/course development
  4. Rock the gigs I get
  5. Be available for unexpected opportunities

Be a good Christ Church member

  1. Attend services & events
  2. Participate in a Life Group
  3. Participate in a volunteer position
  4. Tithe when possible

Things I might like doing someday (when money/time allow):  Cycling, Kayaking, More reading & writing, More volunteering, More cooking & baking, Learn another language or two, Travel, Yoga, Tai Chi, Meditation, Crafts, Play piano, Hiking, Snorkeling, and ?!?

4 responses to “My To-Do List

  1. A few years back, I did the 101 things in 1001 days list making project. I managed to get 101 things onto a list that I wanted to do. Over the next 1001 days, I did some of them and I did a bunch of other things, too. Since I enjoyed the things I did and I did things that I enjoy, what was the purpose of the list? Maybe just to beat myself up about the things I didn’t do? It’s curious that we put things on lists that are supposed to be enjoyable, like hiking. Why does it have to go on a list? And more importantly, it goes on a list and still doesn’t get done. Why do we have to “make” ourselves go hiking? If you wanted to go hiking, wouldn’t you just go hiking?

    Your list seems kind of scary to me. Especially things like “Be [a] loving and supportive [mother] unconditionally at all times forever”. Really? I’m pretty sure I’ve been unsupportive already today. Because I’m a person, and I have feelings, and I’m not always sunshine and roses. I suspect that you are, too. It sounds to me like this list item really reads, “Set unrealistic expectations so that I’m sure to feel like shit when I don’t meet them.”

    It’s even scarier when you’re talking about your marriage. “Be the loving, supportive & compelling best friend he wants/needs at all times.” At all times? Really? Isn’t he a grown adult who can see to his own needs most of the time? Compelling? What does that even mean?

    This list sounds really… heavy to me. I imagine that you struggle under its weight.

    On another topic. I have enjoyed reading your words here for a long time, but I wanted to let you know that I’m going to stop reading for now. I am not interested in reading about Christianity. Even though I’m an atheist, I have really benefited from some of the things you’ve said on religious/spiritual topics, but now that you’re going to write through a Christian lens, I’m just not up for it. I haven’t been the most prolific commenter in the world, but I wanted to give you a word of explanation why I won’t be commenting at all anymore. I wish you the best.

    • Wow. So you write me the longest comment in the world then tell me that you’re done with me. I had no idea that anyone would stop speaking to me anymore if I started speaking a new spiritual language, in addition to the languages I already speak. “Oh, you’re learning Arabic? That’s gross!” You think I’m gonna give up studying Buddhism? You think I’ll stop following the Tao? You don’t know me very well. And apparently don’t want to.

      I appreciate all your thoughts about my list. I think you’re right on the money with most if not all. But I suppose it’s pointless to talk about it now. I’ll just deal with it by my little lonesome Christian-affiliated, Buddhist-leaning, Tao-loving self.

  2. Yeah, ugh. I’m probably an asshole. I debated about whether to say what I did, maybe I should have just kept my thoughts to myself. It felt weird to be hitting the unsubscribe button after reading you for so long without saying something, but I guess it’s weird to be saying what I am anyway.

    It’s true that I don’t really know you that well. But I DO know Christianity very well, and I just can’t stand to read about it. I don’t know any children who are abused in the name of Buddha. I don’t know any women who are beaten in the name of Buddha. I don’t know any people who are driven to suicide in the name of Buddha. I don’t know anyone who’s been murdered in the name of Buddha. I don’t know anyone who does destructive “charity” in the name of Buddha. And I do know ME very well. I can’t read language associated with Christianity (“tithing”) and not connect it to harmful practices and not feel really upset. Christianity isn’t a language. It’s an extremely harmful ideology. It is an ideology that I personally have been harmed by.

    Obviously you have found something useful there. And by all means, you should post about it. I just can’t read it. So I unsubscribed. Crap, maybe this is all way more dramatic than it should have been, and you never would have noticed that I didn’t comment again. I haven’t commented as much as I would have liked to, but some of your posts have been REALLY MEANINGFUL to me, like your post about breastfeeding being a right, not a choice. I am sorry that my comment was hurtful to you, although maybe this one will be, too. Fuck. I’m sorry.

  3. Thank you for responding again. I told my husband last night that one of my favorite bloggers had broken up with me, and he said what you just explained, that most likely you’d been hurt and couldn’t go back there. He speaks from experience. My hurts from Christianity don’t amount to much more than the crushing weight of Catholic guilt, as well as a dysfunctional view of sex and some other minor garbage. I’ve kept a good distance from Christianity for 28 years to heal from all that, so I can imagine that for others with greater hurts, it would be longer or not at all. I’m cool with that. My spirituality has always been about finding a person’s individual truth, and simply embracing Christianity isn’t going to change any of my fundamental views (which may be a clear indicator of trouble up ahead, but I have to go where my heart leads me.)

    Currently, I truly believe that it is possible, if a person is so inclined, to move beyond the cruel, ignorant, and genuinely abusive practices of some Christians to get to the truth and wisdom in Jesus’ message. I believe his message was Buddha’s message, but in a different “language.” I truly believe that the harmful ideology you speak of is purely human-created and has nothing to do with Jesus. I think he would highly, vehemently disapprove of just about everything done in his name.

    Why do I think the whole mess can be redeemed? I’m crazy like that.

    I completely respect a person’s choice to find their inspiration elsewhere. As I say, I’ve never been evangelical, and don’t intend ever to be. I would love for my words to give the reader inspiration, or cause to question, or new information, or comfort. Or a laugh, that’s even better. I think part of my unskillful reaction to your news was that I was hurt that, although we will continue to walk our individual paths as before, we will hold hands no further. And partly, it was because I sensed that I had hurt someone with my words, and for that I am truly sorry. I am not moving further toward Jesus in an attempt to alienate or choose sides, but as a way to further my spiritual education and develop my ability to participate in Oneness.

    Peace to you on your path. You’re an amazing person and I’ll miss you.

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