Thursday, February 11, 2010

Life's Little Checklist

It seems like so many people I know are pregnant, have just had a baby, are looking to buy a first/new house, or BOTH and it has me feeling a little green (with envy, that is). Not that I really want either of those things for my life right now. I can't imagine trying to nurse a newborn while running after Evel Knievel and I've already looked at plenty of houses within our price range and didn't find a thing I liked more than our house. So why am I so envious?!?

I think it all revolves around the adult milestone years. You know, first comes love then comes marriage, etc. Not that I believe anyone has to follow that plan,  it just so happens I did. (I mean, well of course you should be in love before marriage, but the rest. You know what I mean.) But I think it goes back even further than that. It's more like my life task list.

Graduate High School- Check.
Graduate college- Check.
Get a job- Check.
Get married- Check.
Buy a house- Check.
Have a baby- Check.

Geesh, when I put it like that I seem like a boring textbook from the 1950's. But really, that's how I've done it. It hasn't always gone exactly as planned. When I was in high school, I swore I wanted to be married by 21. (What was I thinking? Married in college? That was not for me.) I also swore I'd have my first baby by the time I was 23 because I really didn't want to be OLD (read: 30) when I had one.

All in all though, I've followed a fairly traditional route. Checking off each milestone as we went. Problem is, I don't have very many more check boxes. This was about as far as I planned while dreaming over the Cinderella-style wedding dress in the JCPenney catalog. So, now what?

Maybe it's that life has gotten pretty monotonous. Laundry, cook, dishes, vacuum, repeat. Maybe I'm itching for an adrenaline rush, a little anticipation, a little anxiety.  (I said, little. Please God, don't smite me.)

None of this is a good reason to check off the 'have another kid' or 'buy a bigger house' boxes, but it doesn't mean I can't be a little envious of those who are.


So spill it, readers, what's next on your list? Or are you just happy to cast your anchor and float for a while? What do you do to mix it up when the monotony of life starts to get you down?

Me? I'm thinking about throwing a gallon of paint at it. A gallon of "Elephant Gray" to be specific.


Chelsea + Jonathan said...

I'm definitely a checklist person too, and I give myself age deadlines. I also haven't figured out what's after "Have a baby" except I guess that "get a job" should be on there somewhere ;)

Susie said...

I am trying to come up with the next check box - Right now it looks like: Come up with what to do next. The other day, I even googled "What do I want to be when I grow up?" Seriously.

corrie said...

Bill and I have periodic conversations about adding a third baby to the checklist. That varies with the degree of sleep deprivation. And we fantasize about the next, roomier, less drafty in winter house; that varies with discussion of the third child -- since a bigger house would be contingent upon more income, which depends on how soon I return to work. So we're kind of just treading water right now. I guess I have enough on my plate! But I do get envious of friends at the next stage of life -- mainly having school-age children, back to working some, a semblance of routine, the "next" house. I remind myself that will come with time, and I shouldn't wish away these years with little ones.

Heidi said...

You could move to KS. That would shake things up a bit! JK

I know exactly what you mean. For me, I go back and forth between wondering what's next and wondering how the hell I got here. (Am I really a wife and mother with a career and a mortgage to pay? Most of the time I still feel like I'm 20!)

I guess the trick is to enjoy every phase to the fullest - because they all pass WAY too quickly!

Then again, I think your Elephant Gray gallon of paint is an excellent solution. Or you could move to KS. :)

Green Girl in Wisconsin said...

Run for school board. Finish my manuscript. Take my kids on a great vacation. Not milestone moments, but those are the plans in my life these days.

Cheetah said...

Why does there always need to be a checklist? There's a lot to be said for contentedness.

Andrea said...

I hear you Abby! I think it's the drive that we are programmed with at a young age and that whole if you aren't moving forward, you're moving backward mentality. We have another baby somewhere in the future and for now I am just trying to enjoy life. And go to BlogHer in August. Are you going?

Convertible Girl said...

Totally understand your feeling, especially since I know we're done having babies. Now our milestones seem to involve redecorating, renovating and rearranging furniture. Also, and not coincidentally, there are also the questions about my working (as in getting paid) more.

Coco said...

i know, right? For me right now, it is just "renovating" small projects around the house as cheap as possible. Bedroom or kitchen is next. It really does fill in the void for a couple months. Good luck with the elephant gray. Spring will help too! New, bigger house and/or new baby have been pushed back a little since the man is due to start his PHD in Sept. Hopefully it won't be pushed back 4 years!?

Becky said...

Considering that I'm still in my 20's and about to graduate from college I'm a little concerned that all that's ahead of me is getting married, buying a house, and having children. Honestly I told myself in high school that I wanted to make something of my life, like join the peace corps or something. Also maybe what you're looking for isn't another milestone to cross. Maybe it's something much more simple than that. Check out my blog :o)

Miche said...

I've actually been thinking a lot about what I want to do after the kids start school-and I am a bit at a loss, because I do really want to be able to be home in the afternoons with I suppose I am at a bit of cross roads that I'll have to "cross" here in a few years.

Paining walls is always a great choice, though, for some added fun. :)