Thus far, I’ve lived a relatively healthy life. No aches in the joints or chronic pain in my back. So, in honesty, I’ve never had a full appreciation for my health. It’s one of those things you don’t miss until you’re limping around the kitchen or having weekly injection appointments. Then, all of a sudden, your body and how it feels gains in the list of things you think about throughout the day.
I feel similarly about housework.
Husband and I had a long discussion last night in regards to household management. (No, not an argument – we try to beat that to the punch. But perhaps you’re more holy than I and when your satisfaction drops, you’re able to contain the snippy comments and sarcasm. Nevertheless, feelings needed shared).
What I came to realize throughout the conversation is that a majority of my time and energy goes into the things that matter little until they go unchecked. The daily slug of picking up toys, fixing a meal, doing the dishes, washing 18 loads of laundry, picking up toys, getting kids dressed, picking up toys… these are not the tasks of immense gratification. They simply garner frustration when not completed. It’s not until you break a toe stepping on Castle Grayscull or it’s 8pm and no one has eaten that anyone cares.
I’ll coin the term negative significance. They matter only in their absence.
Though living in the world of negative significance is, at times, a bit grueling, it can have its light. I’ve found many a blogger who seem to adjusted expectations so that these small things bring great joy and fulfillment. I’m just not there yet.
Part of me wants to be. Part of me wants to fully encapsulate the saying I’ve scrawled onto a plain white sheet of paper with a blue sharpie: In life there are no great things, only small things done with great love. – Mother Teresa (I’m giving you what I wrote, not the real quote. I totally miffed that up when I wrote it down). Part of me wants to remember that “great things” are done one small thing at a time; even great cathedrals and beautiful art and meaningful relationships are built brick-by-brick, moment-by-moment. So Mama T knows her shtuff.
But the other part of me doesn’t want to lose the ambition for *more*. Part of me doesn’t want to simply be satisfied and quelled and pacified by what is available rather than what is possible. Contentment is good when it comes to material things and defeating the lust of the world. But it’s a bad approach ushering in the Kingdom. I can’t hear Jesus saying things like “well, this is just the way life is right now.”
I know many people in the world with all the power at their hands to make change and impact who lead very unsatisfactory lives. And it’s probably because they haven’t wiped enough snotty noses. So the solution is not to change position, but to change perspective.
So, in that vein, it’s time to arise the children and begin the daily event of what I like to call “getting out the door with all limbs still attached.”