At the beginning of September, I started a project at church. I still remember those fateful words, "I can probably take care of this week, and then I really should stop."
Excuse me while I laugh my head off.
Really, how good are you at 'stopping' in the middle of a project you created? After that week, there was about two weeks of giving 90% of my time to try and 'finish' the project. Of course, David was 100% correct when he said, "This is going to be more work than you think."
I've since admitted that I'll be seeing this through to the end (basically Thanksgiving) and taken it to a much more reasonable time commitment. But during those two weeks, I realized this was the first big project I'd taken on since Liz came home, and I ended up wrestling a bit with how to manage priorities.
This is a worthy project. It's going to bless a lot of families (I hope), and it may even have some staying power past this Christmas. It's not the only place I can spend my time, though. There are so many worthy projects, and I also have, you know, a house, a husband, and children to deal with too.
Time is definitely a limited currency, and it's hard to know where to spend it sometimes. I was reminded of a few things by some wise people around me:
1. There will always be seasons in our lives. Some seasons are busy (like this one), and some seasons need to be deliberately slower (like when we bring Titus home). If there is a two week period where I need to set aside every checkmark on my to-do list so I can get a project off the ground, that's okay. When it begins to take over my life long-term...then it's time to step back and reassess.
2. Do the things that bring you joy. I'm enjoying this project at church, but I still love teaching chemistry the most. It's made me reconsider taking two semesters off when Titus comes home, because when I think about what makes my heart sing, teaching chemistry is pretty near the top of the list. I just wish cleaning my house brought me joy too...
3. It's important to have people in your life who will help you identify the top priorities and help you say no. Enter David, who kindly reminded me I could NOT also take on organizing all the kids clothes at the thrift store where we volunteer right now, and served as a good sounding board while I figured things out.
4. But it's also helpful to have people in your life who enable you. During that two-week "get this project off the ground" period, David was instrumental in helping me focus, reminding me to eat after teaching, taking the kids outside so I could work, and giving me advice when I needed to figure things out.
(If nothing else, I've been reminded yet again that David is the very best of men)