Just so’s ya know, I’m not a naturally prepared girl — I’m more unprepared than prepared. But God. It was through many blessings in my life that I learned to be prepared for things. It was through many failures, missed events and opportunities that I had to develop methods to be better prepared for — well, for life.
But I was unprepared. I didn’t come from a large family. I wasn’t raised in a Christian home. I didn’t have a great deal of Bible knowledge yet–but I had faith and that faith began to bloom. And so, that was the foundation of our marriage from the beginning: faith, hope and love. I didn’t have great homemaking, or cooking, or gardening, or time-management skills. And while I didn’t have a whole lot of experience, what I did have was a whole lot of want to! I really wanted to be a faithful woman, to have a happy marriage, home, and family.
So life circumstances developed into “preparedness training” for me. Necessity being the mother of invention, I had to develop methods for keeping some semblance of order (and sanity). I spent years defining and refining and–decades–preparing each day for the day ahead. I wrote in journals. I kept a notebook/planner that had all sorts of sections for specific information, appointments, shopping lists, kid’s needs- sizes, etc., meal plans and other records–I called it “my mind” and, truly, if I’d misplace it or (seem to) lose it somewhere, I’d sincerely lament: I lost my mind. ~smile~
Life preparations included a large “white-board” on the wall; it had a couple of rows on top and underneath, header columns written in Sharpie: names, chores, assignments, activities, appointments. In the top row (with dry erase markers) I wrote the month, day and year. In the row beneath that, I had seven squares, one for each day of the week and in each of those I wrote the family activity/appointment/whatever for that day. In long columns, I had sections for chores, schoolwork, etc., and down the left side I had each child’s name (creating a row for each one). For those who could read, I’d dry-erase write in the information for the day; for those who could not, I had small “chore” pictures for them to see, to do, and to tell me they’d done whatever the little picture indicated each day.
Years went by. More children were born. The whiteboard got bigger — the columns, longer; the days, fuller. And then the season began to change… a couple of names dropped off the board, but more names began to be added to my notebook. Then more names dropped off and I was slowly heading into a new role. Kind of unprepared, really.
I don’t have that sort of notebook anymore. The notes I take and the lists I make are nothing like those of days gone by. I don’t buy ten gallons of milk every week, I don’t do 4 or 5 loads of laundry every day, I don’t pass out chore lists — I don’t have a whiteboard on the wall anymore.
Though I still feel sort of unprepared sometimes in this new-ish season, I looking forward to each day with anticipation. When I get a call from a daughter, a facetime or a recipe request, or a visit with some thrilling news; or daughter in law wanting to visit or wanting care for some littles, or any or all the kids stopping by for a visit, I give thanks to the Lord for all this. Ironically, each day I prepare for the things that come up for which I might’ve thought I was unprepared, but God! Then I marvel: in nothing and everything He prepared me for this.