Tuesday, 13 September 2011

Learning to let go of the small stuff

I used to be very particular about the way my washing was hung on the line. It was so pleasing to my sense of order to see the washing all lined up neatly. Then I got married. Franky did not have the same concern about how the washing was hung up. I tried to accept this as one of those areas of grace in our marriage. If Franky was offering to help hang out the washing, surely I could overlook the fact that he didn't group the clothing (and hung the t-shirts by the shoulders).

Neatly hung kids' washing - bibs together, nappies together, pyjamas together, etc
After a few years, we had a baby. There were seemingly endless loads of washing to do - nappies, wraps, sheets, clothes, towels. The fact that the washing was clean and on the line was an achievement in itself! Now don't get me wrong, there is still a certain way I like things hung on the line. I like to group the clothes by person and type so that they are already sorted and quicker to put away (eg. all of Mr Fun's clothes go together & are sorted into nappies, pants, shirts, singlets, etc). But even though I like things done a certain way, I'm working at smiling and graciously saying "thank you" when others offer to hang up the clothes, rather than giving them "suggestions" about how it could be done more efficiently ;)

Lately, I've had to let go of another area as Mr Sociable has been offering to stack the dishwasher. He doesn't do it the way I would (the "right way" ;)), but he is keen to help and I want to encourage that. So I stand back, making only the occasional suggestion, and praise his efforts.  

Dishwasher stacked by Mr Sociable
These lessons may seem trivial, but they are part of a wider picture of me learning not to get stressed about the small stuff. I love to be organised and for our house to be tidy - but that's pretty hard to maintain with little kids (especially when I want them to explore, create, play, etc). So I am learning to do what I can to keep the housework under control, but giving my time and energy to relationships first.

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