I can still hear our professor of pastoral care and counseling in seminary, "Procrastination is protection against perfectionism." I remembering finding that thought rather odd, and I seem to recall some classmates questioning him. The older I get, though, the more inclined I am to agree with him. Mom was a perfectionist, not just about Christmas, but about other things as well. Her stove was always spotless. Towels and washcloths had to be folded just so. I work hard at letting go of perfectionist tendencies. I have also always been a procrastinator.
So last night we set up the table in the dining room. We put on the centerpiece. I went to bed. This morning I woke up thinking of all the things I could do to make it better. Just like we set up two additional Christmas trees yesterday, today I bought a better table cloth (the old one wasn't quite big enough for the beautiful dining room table I inherited from my parents). I bought a plastic table cloth to go underneath and provide additional protection (we'd already padded the table with plastic bags and newspapers). I decided I needed to add some tinsel garland to the brandy snifter holding the candle in the centerpiece.
We went to the store, and the table has been redone. Is it perfect? Well, probably not by my Mom's standards. I've decided I'm going to stay out of the dining room now. I don't need to find other things to try to perfect. I'll focus in on perfecting things in the kitchen instead. I'm beginning to understand why procrastination is not necessarily a bad thing....