And Who Does The Most Work?
Want to remember something? Write it down. I’ve lived by that rule forever. I’m not sure when I learned to make lists . . . maybe my mom was a list maker.
In school, I remember having this great planner. The cover was filled with stickers of all my favorite things—horses, flowers, palm trees, and hearts. Inside were pages of lists: favorite song lyrics, favorite movies, interesting places to visit, and fun things to do. Stuffed between the pages were magazine tear sheets of the latest fashions and make-up tips. The heyday of my favorite planner was during high school, when—for me—life was all about having fun.
The first stage of list-making usually begins with “Things I Want.” When my kids were little, I’d have them make a Christmas wish list and a birthday wish list, which they posted on the fridge. Sometimes, they wrote their lists on notebook paper. Other times, they sat down with the colored advertising section of the newspaper and circle their favorite things with a marker. They didn’t know which item from their list was going to be purchased and wrapped, but I knew there would be smiles when they opened their gifts.
The next stage of list-making is “Things I Have to Do.” It’s a stage that today is called “adulting.” Shopping lists, appointments for each member of the family, the family pets . . . and don’t forget yourself! There are notes so you don’t miss a birthday or an anniversary, and reminders to schedule household and automotive maintenance. YUCK! Definitely not as fun as the “Things I Want” list. I’ve been stuck in this stage of list-making for years, and I don’t see a way out of it. The list is practical—I am practical. Things get done when they are on the list. It just makes sense, even if it isn’t fun.
And there’s one more list—the list of things I jot down for my husband to do. Sometimes, the list includes reminders and due dates, but it’s usually a list of things that I want help with. This big, old house seems to constantly need repairs, and now that we’ve lived here 20 years, I think everything needs to be re-done. I bet I don’t have to say this . . . because you can probably guess . . . my husband doesn’t agree.
What usually takes place is a heated discussion about who does the most work around the house. This leads to my husband generating his own list of all the things he already does. His list is supposed to prove that he does more work than I do.
Did you just laugh out loud? I did! As I see it, and I’ve tried to explain this to him, there is a problem with his list. He can’t differentiate between the tasks that you do every day—dishes, cooking, cleaning, laundry—and the list of the other things that need to be done.
He then poses these questions: “Is it a need? Or a want?” I hate that. I’m telling you, I REALLY hate that!
He says these simple questions save him a lot of money.
I say he’s just trying to get out of finishing my Honey Do list.