Since I have been under the weather, I have come to terms with living in a messy house. I actually saw this as progress, as Younger Me would have crawled from her sickbed to shine the bathrooms and put away everyone’s backpacks anyway.
I am mildly pleased with myself for accepting the squalor.
When Charlie created an art installation from the pumpkins and Jack Be Little gourds in our entryway, I left them as they were—which is to say, underfoot and all over the hall.
When Jack ate a brownie (or three) on the couch, I didn’t panic about the crumbs. I left them to get even more crumbly. Then I vacuumed them up a few days later.
When Jack and Charlie spent the end of Fall Break unloading the linen closet all over the upstairs hallway, I rolled my eyes and left it alone. It’s a wonder to behold: my upstairs hallway covered in rugs and duffel bags, quilts and a couple of small Christmas trees. Jack’s attention to detail is impressive; he wrapped the trees with lights, and then wrapped the lights with extension cords.
While I’m newly messy, I’m not a hoarder.
At my core, I’m really the anti-hoarder. This is because hoarders hate to part with material goods, even if it means that keeping them will result in a kitchen that looks like a landfill.
I’m anti-hoarding because I throw everything away. To a fault. Someone isn’t directly using it, but it’s on my counter? Get it out of my sight. Trash that pointless junk. Henry has started declaring that it would be really helpful if the half-eaten muffin and the homework on the counter were there when he returned from the bathroom.
Sometimes I dream of employing a house cleaner, who would receive the following instructions:
Please clean the bathrooms, thoroughly, before dusting/mopping/vacuuming etc. Any items (socks, toys, Christmas trees, shredded photographs, suitcases, castoff vacuums, etc.) which impede the cleaning may be tossed in the garbage without a second thought. Proceed with abandon.
The bottom line is that while I appreciate cleanliness, all my children, save one, lack the age or ability to be productive housekeepers. We are NOT a band of happy cleaners, collectively sweeping and polishing our way through the task at hand.
We are a one-woman show (with occasional bursts of help from Dutch, H, and the Chach), not caring overly much about the perpetual piles. Or the dirty floors. Or the furry bathrooms.
What can I say? Sorry not sorry.