I resist the social media trend to make lists for the amusement of others but I’m an inveterate list-maker. Today as I fought back tears, sitting on a wooden stool lamenting over batteries and dead flashlights, I made a list of personal traits and behavior that I most admire in myself and others. Then, just to rub salt in the old wound, I matched that with a list of personal traits and behaviors to which I respond most negatively — both in myself and others, with my thumb tipping the scale against myself most strongly and surely.
A half hour later, the dog started pacing through the house, no doubt wondering if I’d stop crying soon. I had managed to salvage three flashlights with a stash of batteries that had fallen behind a bunch of useless junk in the bottom kitchen drawer. I made a cup of tea and a bowl of soup, and huddled in a rocker in the television room, my sightless stare fixed on a flickering image telling me how to make breakfast steak on the backside of a cast iron pan.
My mental lists lay heavy on my heart. Number one on each list reflected parallel unmet needs. Most valued trait? Loyalty. Least valued? Disloyalty.
But I’m not complaining. Really. Not. Complaining.
It’s the fourteenth day of the thirty-seventh month of My Year Without Complaining. I’m getting the house cleaned and chasing the cobwebs out of my mind. My heart’s still closed for repair. Life continues.