The conversation on Facebook a few months ago started out innocently enough. A friend posted a photo of her daughter playing at our house and another commented about how clean my floors looked. My friend responded with how she “doesn’t know how [I] do it” as a working at home mom. Of course, like the Catholic child-all-grown-up that I am, I took that as my cue to say something humble, and responded with a response along the lines of “Oh, it must’ve been cleaning day.”
But cleaning day is everyday at my house. And that’s not always a good thing.
It means instead of sitting on the floor playing with my daughter, I’m focused on the piles of dog hair hiding in corners. I panic at the thought of someone “just stopping by.”
**And now since the internet is full of trolls (and my friends), I must add a disclaimer: I don’t judge your house, but I give mine a virtual white glove test on a regular basis.**
Instead of enjoying the company of others in my home, I bustle around, cleaning up around them. It annoys people, makes them feel unwanted and I have to remind myself to sit the $*&% down.
The past 26 years of my life have also been reduced to a single clear Rubbermaid box of mementos. And I’m not talking about “stuff.” I’m talking about memory-inducing, heart-felt concrete items that remind you of times past or fun experiences. I’ve moved one too many times and holding onto things from my past just isn’t in my nature. Frankly, I’d rather forget a lot of my childhood. And yes, I realize that sentence reads like a desperate plea for therapy, I’m working on it.
Also, my house isn’t always clean, only when you stop by. Usually, there’s upwards of 25 books scattered in one room, toys spilled all over a playmat in another, and a couple of un-flushed toilets in the bathrooms.
So don’t be jealous of my clean house. Because while it may appear all put together, I assure you, I’m one hairball from losing my cool trying to keep up with it and still find time to connect with my family.