At the beginning of the summer, I have grand visions of myself as a housewife. I will deep clean every nook and cranny of our home. Each closet will be meticulously scrutinized, de-cluttered, and organized with colorful baskets. Our beds will always be made in the mornings. I will iron and fold the clothes the very second the timer goes off on the drier. My children will be both intellectually and physically challenged and invigorated. Dinners will be healthy, cost effective, and promptly on the table by the time my husband gets home from work.
By the end of the first week of summer, I usually realize that I need to radically adjust my expectations.
The reality is that I never deep clean anything, including my kids. My closets are fairly neat and organized, but they also have random crap that has no other home shoved in them. Our beds are never made. The clothes sit in the washer until I have to re-wash them again, and then they sit in the drier until the wrinkles have been permanently pressed into them beyond the hope of any iron. My kids are mentally and physically stimulated only when I want to be mentally and physically stimulated, which isn’t nearly as often as a decent grown woman should admit. I cook pretty regularly, unless I forget to thaw the meat out and don’t realize it until 10 minutes before my kids have total meltdowns about how hungry they are and then we just order or go out (and sometimes I “forget” to thaw meat on purpose just so we can go out…).
If this was 1956, I’d be screwed.
I’m a terrible housewife. Thank goodness I work ten months out of the year because we’d all be in trouble. For these two months during summer, when I feel like I should shoulder the housework myself because I’m not working and Chris is, I really suck at my job of housekeeping.
And I know I’m not alone. Who likes to clean the house?! But I don’t know if people really understand the great lengths I will go through to avoid housework. It’s why the kids and I are running all over town during the summer. The weird thing is that for some reason, people expect me to be good at it. I must seem like a very homemaker kind of person.
NEWSFLASH: I’m not.
I can’t figure out where this image comes from. Maybe because I’m a teacher? People think I’m crafty, too.
NEWSFLASH: I’m not.
Maybe they think because my mom and sister are pretty awesome homemakers that I would be, too? Like it’s genetic?
NEWSFLASH: It’s not.
Chris took a picture of me one time when I was pregnant with Bean. He came home one Saturday afternoon from somewhere to find me eight months pregnant, under a dining room table, vacuuming. This is when I realized nesting was a very real thing because it has to take something as psychologically disturbing as giant, pregnant ladies attacking things with vacuums to make me want to clean anything.
And can we pause to appreciate how incredibly huge I was as a pregnant lady? Holy cow.
I can think of about 10,00 other things I would rather do than clean, cook, or launder anything:
- Rub poison ivy all over my ass.
- Start one giant group text with everyone I know.
- Have the word “penis” tattoo’d on my forehead.
- Get a sunburn on the tops of my feet.
- Have a pap smear.
- Hang out at the DMV.
- Sit through any kind of dance-themed movie.
- Give myself a paper cut between two of my fingers.
- Poke myself in the eye with a pencil.
- File my taxes.
Shall I go on?
The good news is that I married someone who knows this about me and indulges me. He will sweetly kiss me on the forehead every morning during summer as he leaves for work and I’m still flailing about in bed at 9:30 in the morning and say with a smile, “Maybe you could do a load of laundry today?” He’s a good man.
A naive man, but a good man.