I didn’t know what baseboards were until a couple of years ago when I heard my friend, Katie, talking about cleaning them. And I was like, “Oh, yeah. Baseboards, am I right? I hose those guys down pretty much every day.”
Cut to me in the car, thirty minutes later: “Siri, what are baseboards?”
I grew up in an environment where creativity was emphasized. I’m sure our baseboards were great, but it wasn’t something we talked about. In our home, someone was always writing a song or taking a screenwriting class or painting something on a giant canvas or shooting a pilot.
Baseboards just weren’t on my radar.
All the time, I am noticing things that I probably should have been noticing for the last thirty years and my genuine reaction is, “Oh! That’s a thing!”
Choosing the life of write-from-home mom has been one of the most life-giving decisions I’ve ever made, but sometimes it messes with my head.
Because I’m living in this sort of limbo between owning homemaking and also meeting deadlines, so it feels like there are a million things a month that prompt the “Oh! That’s a thing I should be doing!” reaction.
This is a life I love, but it’s easy for me slip into the unhealthy mindset of looking at the #pinteresthomemaker with sparkly baseboards and the #pinterestwriter whose laptop doesn’t have food caked onto the screen, and who works in a reclaimed barn wood coffee shop shaped like an actual barn, and think I’m doing it all wrong.
So, until recently, I didn’t know what baseboards were.
Now, I need to clean my baseboards.
I need to clean my kitchen.
I need to clean myself.
I need to finish prepping my daughter’s science lesson.
I need to write the Bible studies due next week.
I need to teach Brooklyn how potties work.
I need to find Brandon’s socks.
I need to fill out another adoption form.
“Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest.” Matthew 11:28
But, baseboards and cooking and the pile of laundry with the stains that I don’t know how to get out and aren’t I supposed to be pre-ironing work shirts if I’m a good wife and if I just take a trash bag and throw all our stuff away, will that fix it, and then I can learn how to poach eggs and…
“Be still before the Lord, and wait patiently for him…” Psalm 37:7a
But, I have to blog at least two times a week and aren’t I supposed to be learning snapchat and the important lady said I have to…
It is in vain that you rise up early and go late to rest, eating the bread of ANXIOUS TOIL, for He gives to His beloved sleep.” Psalm 127:2
I tell my 5-year-old all the time to keep her eyes on Jesus, and not worry so much about if she accidentally dropped a carrot on the floor or got her ballet sticker or kept her soccer cleat from falling off during the game.
I tell her that, and then I live in a state of anxious toil, striving at my job, striving at momming, striving at dieting – trying to make myself #pinterestworthy in every way. And I fail, and I fail, and I fail. Learning what baseboards are is only scratching the surface.
Pursuing excellence is good, but it’s a chase that never ends. When Jesus tells me rest, He really means I can rest. When He tells me to store up treasure in heaven, He’s not giving me an impossible job description. He wants my heart, not my checklist. My love, not my initiative. My worship, not my worry.
Jesus wants me to remember that He already has my heart and He’s already handled my future. When I lay my head down tonight, whether or not I got the last Cheerio off the floor or whether or not I heard back from a publisher, or whether or not I filled out the thousand and oneth adoption form, I can lay down in peace, for He alone makes my soul dwell in safety.
“In peace, I will lie down and sleep, for you alone LORD, make me dwell in safety.” Psalm 4:8
I’m going to clean the baseboards.