Yesterday my very patient husband turned to me with that look in his eyes and said, very calmly, “You are doing too much again.”
He said this as we both stood despondently looking down into a crock pot full of uncooked, expensive pork chops. That morning I had carefully loaded up my crock pot with all the ingredients my new recipe required. I had gotten myself all done up in my cute little work clothes, made sure my kiddos were ready to head off into their worlds, kissed my husband good bye, all the while promising a grand pork chop dinner with all the fixings. Then I grabbed my beloved red leather suitcase sized purse briefcase combo, stuffed to the brim with planners, colorful date books and matching pen and pencil sets; checked my phone, left the house and DID NOT TURN ON THE CROCK POT!
Imagine my surprise when one of sons called me later to ask what we were having for dinner!
Wasting food is a big wake up call for me. I have a good old Southern husband and two teenage boys who both run cross country. Food is a big issue in my house. I am always on food waste patrol! I reuse leftovers, save half eaten sandwiches and have been known have screaming fits when one of the two gallons of milk I buy each week gets left out.
But yesterday I blew it, big time!
So, I sat down today to take stock. Do I really need to go to a meeting or participate in a worthy cause every single night? For the past week or so I have not had one night where I didn’t have anything to do. Is it really worth it to make sure my kitchen is spotless every morning before I go to work? To accomplish this I have been getting up even earlier than my usual 5am.
Don’t get me wrong…I love to be busy. I love to be on committees, be an organizer, a participant, an activist. Nothing thrills me more than starting a new project timeline in a new 3 ring binder. Twenty years ago I could have run an army and invaded a small country with only my phone and a Vera Bradley organizer. But…it’s not twenty years ago.
As much as I hate to admit it…I am slowing moving towards the non-participant side of the room. You know who you are. You value your free time, you don’t spread yourself too thin and you somehow accept that others could get the job done just as well.
Admittedly I used to view your kind as selfish or disconnected. But now….well, maybe you are just a little bit right about these things.
Those perfect, butcher cut pork chops swimming in a wet, cold mess of clumpy brown sugar and tar like beef stock called out up to me in a pitiful wail, “Is it really worth it?”