It always seems like I’m always planning my life in the newest planner instead of doing life. Buying the newest one with its cute stickers, sparkly bookmarks and page clips always holds the promise for me that life is about to get grand and my dreams are about to be reached. Inspirational quotes abound from Edith Stein to Jesus Christ himself, in these planners of mine and I find myself filling pre-made, perfectly drawn weekly squares with words of inspo.
And then it happens.
I find myself still writing the novel. Still re-editing that short story. Still grappling over tone of that poem about the Port cranes. The floors are grubby and pock-marked, the grass needs to be cut, the bathroom smells like mold and on and on and on. Life doesn’t get grand and dreams are not reached because of a shiny new planner. I end up feeling less like the #BossBabe and more like, well, shit.
Life seen through a glossy plastic planner just gets busier and cluttered with more appointments, events, tasks upon tasks upon tasks interspersed with all the pretty drawings and curly swirling letters reminding me that we are at the end of March, and April needs to be planned out and yes, busy one, we are nearing, in three months time, the half-way mark for 2017.
And in 6 months time, my only child will be entering her senior year of high school and in a year, she will decide on what college she will attend and in that same year, she’ll be gone from my house, starting her own adventure of planning and living her own life. A part of me will be happy for her. I will be proud. And yet, another part will be scared to death for her and for me. Mostly, for me because what am I if not this other person’s active mother/friend planning life for them and us, spinning a web of “fun, educational, and memorable life experiences” for us to remember for a lifetime. What am I without the role of planner?
Until then, I often ask myself, feigning exasperation, “Can I stop all this planning and organizing and just get to the business of life and living? ” If I’m to be honest, I have to admit to the possibility that maybe I don’t want to stop planning. I like feeling caught up in this whirlwind of family, dinner, house chores, hobbies, cleaning, gardening, driving here, driving there, working out, writing, blogging, and making things because it makes me feel real, full, significant.
I don’t even know if I can live without having a plan, anymore. Free-wheeling the day is a shocking proposal. What? Just do and just be. WTF!!!! But, I know that one day, that is what I’ll be, another old lady in my small town without a need for a plan and that scares the living crap out of me.
Without a plan my house will definitely go to hell. The bathroom and kitchen and laundry will not get picked up, cleaned up and get done. I need to write those things down if they even stand a chance at completion because if left to my own devices, the less savory tasks of life, like deep cleaning a toilet or sorting and washing dirty and smelly gym wear will not get done. They will sit and be. Would that be a good thing? I can’t even remember.
Then there’s my writing. Yes, let’s mention my writing. That little albatross I’ve been carrying around my neck for the past 30 years is in definite need of a task list. So, there it is. Once again that dream of mine that needs a plan is in my sight. I can see it. Yes, I can! It’s there within grasp if only I had a plan. That’s exactly what I need. A plan. First, though I will need a planner to put that plan in.
This time though I’m eschewing the fancy leather bound, sticker filled, glitter #bossbabe expandable filofax. This time, I’m going for a simpler, more handmade planner that feels more authentic, more transparent, more pointed… A Bullet Journal. Yes , that’s my new planner for the real me, with hands clenched and wide smile, says the whirling dervish as she bites the bullet and drives herself to Office Depot for a new set of Flair Tropical Colored Pens.
I’ve got a plan.