Wednesday, March 4, 2009

Admitting Defeat

I hired a cleaning lady today.
She will come twice a month for 3 hours each time to sanitize those areas of my house that need it most.

Today was the trial run and she was here for 5 hours.
Three hours were spent on bathrooms alone.
Try to imagine how clean they are. Go on. Try.

The rest of the time she dealt with floors. My tile and wood floors are now spotless.
SUCH a good feeling to come home from work to a house smelling of bleach.

And don't think I am not torturing myself with guilt.
I only work parttime, and have a son not working or going to school... so you'd think that between the two of us we could stay on top of dust bunnies and cobwebs. You'd be thinking wrong if that's what you think let me tell you.

He has to beat a game. And he's taking it very serious, investing at least 8 hours a day into the project.
And me?
I have things like craft nights, dinner-with-friends nights, TV night (Thursdays from 9 - 11), laundry-and-grocery nights, random-pick-an-obscure-cupboard cleaning night, reading-a-fabulous-book nights, walk-n-talk nights, lets-plan-a-holiday nights and so on.

Mostly I just don't want to.

I'm happy to keep it tidy.
I'm not so happy to keep it clean.

So, today, Grazyna from Poland stood barefoot in my sons' bathtub and scrubbed the tile til all the black stuff on the grout was gone. "Look! You see? All gone, yes?"

I'm thinking of hiring someone to do my lawns as well.
And you're thinking, "she's got three sons living at her house. Surely between the three of them they can manage to cut the lawn once a week..."
Well, they probably CAN manage, but can I say how tired I am of the fighting?
It's never anyone's turn to do it because they all did it last time. And truly? They do a lousy job.

They all know how to mow the lawn. They all know how to clean a bathroom. But I can't make them do it cheerfully, or make them do it well. I only have a short time left that they will all be living here with me. Do I really want 75% of my conversations with them to be about cleaning their bathroom or mowing the lawn?

I know.
I'm totally failing at this parenting thing.
I'm letting them "win".

But they still have to do their own laundry.
And take out the garbage.
And empty the dishwasher.
And, on rare occasions, defrost the deep freeze.

Three things I'm thankful for:
1. I actually worked on my photo albums tonight. Yay for craft evenings.
2. My camera will be gone from my side for only 3 days this time. And it didn't go as far away as Phoenix... It's spending the remainder of this week on Keat's Island.
3. Drew's camera, which was left behind when he was whisked off the mountain in the ambulance last weekend, was returned to him tonight.
4. I have three very clean bathrooms. (And another clean freezer. Max and I did the kitchen freezer this evening.)


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