Realized tonight how much I tend to expect a perfect world.  Not an entirely perfect world — though I keep itching for one of those, as well, who doesn’t? — but at least a world where my laundry is caught up and I’m cheerful, too. 

I can’t blame it on TV, though other people could, I guess.  I tend to get my dose of the perfection-fantasy via literature.  There’s fiction, where, if you read the fun stuff and not the depressing kind, the main characters only ever struggle with the conflicts embedded in the official plot lines.  And then there’s ordinary non-fiction, where lawns are mowed, gardens weeded, wayward canes pruned.  No one would ever, ever, think about whether pansy food is good for roses, not in that world.  They either break down and buy the rose food, or concoct their own special organic alternative — in either case, applying at the right time of year.

The worst though is self-help non-fiction.  And there, the Christian Housewife market is just as bad as the secular offerings.  Plenty of good material out there, telling me just what I need to do to get my job done, and get it done well.  None of it, however, takes into account the bit about how *I* am the person who is expected to do it. 

I do not think the solution is to give up on myself.  If I have to settle for mediocrity, or some kind of even worse-itocrity, I shouldn’t go down without a fight.  The trick for me is remembering that I and everything and everyone else in the world have fallen, and so if the actual results vary from the model, well, um, don’t say I wasn’t warned.


On that note, St. Francis de Sales is your man.  Here are the Golden Counsels – nice quick reading, good for busy housewives.    (You can thank some of the delphi NFP ladies for directing me that way a few months ago, in an off-line conversation.)