Thursday, March 6, 2008

Not So Big Life

This morning, in preparation for meeting with the Thursday night girls, I have been reading Chapters 3 and 4 of Sarah Susanka's book. First let me say that my husband has no idea all the things he pays me to do. But I'll save that for a later post.

We are asked to make two lists:

1. All the things that make us frustrated, unhappy, or discontented.
2. All the things that make us happy, joyful, or delighted.

Easy, easy I'm thinking as I fill a page of each in about a minute.

Then BAM--the hard part. Take each item on the list and think back as far as you can to the first event or situation where you felt this reaction. Take your time, she says. Trace back.

I am moving along pretty smoothly until I get to one of my dislikes: Having too much to do. As I think about this one, something comes to my mind about being a child who had four younger siblings. And although I don't remember anyone ever saying, "Mamie, watch so-and-so" I realize that I was looking out for them. Protecting them. And I realize that this was "too much for me to do" and I get teary thinking about the child that was taking on this big emotional responsiblity. I'm finished working on the list for today in order to give myself some time with this.

This is twice that this book has elicited sadness from me. It all feels like some kind of loss--loss of time, loss of innocence. But I'm hoping that the end result of examining this will be a gain of epic proportions. I'm counting on it.

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