I have had an epiphany.
When there are five bodies in the house, the washing machine
needs to be running every day. Five bodies just insist on wearing ALL THE
CLOTHES and it has finally dawned on me that one wash per person per week is
not even close to being enough. Yes, I wash separately – the boys’ clothes, my
clothes, Bren’s clothes and the baby clothes – mixing them up gives me the
heebie jeebies so don’t ask me to change. Up until now, I was doing one load a week for
everyone and then losing my mind when the hampers were overflowing just days later.
There are a few issues here. One, clearly, clearly, I am not the
sharpest tool in the shed. Two, what an embarrassment of consumerist riches that my family each have so
many clothes that we can go a whole week (and frankly, much more) without ever running
out of stuff to wear.
Thirdly, is this the most boring piece I have ever written?
What has become of me? Who even am I?
The perfect segue here would be some kind of sponsored post for laundry detergent and though I have been asked to write that very thing more than once, sadly, this is just the most pressing issue on my mind right now.
I am treating you to some serious minutiae here. Minutiae, manure. Same, same.
At some point, you need to accept the fact that Mount Washmore has no summit. Unless you plan on adopting the culture of the naturalist. For sure, I have shown you all my nude bod before so it's not like I'm against it but being a pregnant butterfly in the nicky noo nar is quite a different thing to, say, grocery shopping with your pubic hair gently undulating in the breeze of the automatic doors. It's different.
So – washing. Expect it to never end and start doing at least one load a day. Embrace that shit.
But here is the important thing. Don't be all about the washing. When you find yourself exclaiming, "Oh no! A stain!" as you hang your child's school uniform out to dry, it's a timely wake up call. You are now identifying with an Omo advertisement and this fact has the potential to undo anything you ever did that was even remotely cool. Crowd surfed at a Nirvana concert? Never happened. Your wild youth is completely negated in that moment when you become part of the day time tv advertising demographic. Seriously. Kids will get shit on their clothes (sometimes literally) that leaves a stain that is never coming out. Accept it and move on. Then grab a glass of wine because life is still a sweet place.
Because try as I might, I cannot avoid domestication. Having three children has left me without options. So though I may have
quietly sniggered at all the ‘housewife’ blogs, with their housework routines and bi-carb soda cleaning tips, I now fall at their feet and weep with gratitude for the
printable lists they offer to help me organise my life.
Because that is the other thing; I am a Hoarders episode
waiting to happen. In my defence, old house, minimal storage means my clutter
has nowhere to hide. But still, it’s time to admit I have trouble letting go. Kids’
art work, unread papers, bills that need filing, empty jam jars that will be
super-useful once I soak the labels off them. So much STUFF. And it just keeps
arriving, in the mail and in school bags and incessantly.
I resist becoming the perfect homemaker then berate myself
for not being her. And I drown under the weight of the clutter. I am drowning in day to day life and oh, how it bores me to tears. There are
infinitely more interesting and rewarding things to be doing but the running of
this house (and the small people in it) is my primary job and to be honest, I
would have fired my disorganised arse LONG AGO. So in order to make more time
for the things I would prefer to be doing, it makes sense to have some kind of
system that more efficiently gets the boring shit done. This
procrastinating on Facebook and then guilt-inhaling cooking chocolate because I wasted an hour doing nothing HAS TO STOP.
So, my epiphany. It might seem ridiculous in its obviousness. Hell, it IS obvious. I knew what I should have been doing, what was necessary, but like the fitness routine you know will change your life if you just commit to it, you find ways to resist the truth.
Like brushing my teeth, I will run the washing machine twice a day. It is a small change in my house but one that will be significant in keeping the wheels turning in this big domestic machine I like to forget I am in charge of. And though mine was a bit lame and possibly helped no-one but me, I encourage you to share one piece of
wisdom that makes running your home that little bit bearable.
Come on, now. You know I could use the help….