Thursday, April 12, 2018

Tales of a Messy Mom: The Day I Learned to Love Cleaning My Kitchen

You have heard the phrase "having to learn the hard way" to characterize people.  I have never really thought of myself as that kind of a person.  I always envisioned a reckless person who thrashes around just moving through life without thinking.  But today, standing in the small kitchen of a condo in a small Arkansas town, I suddenly realized that I had just learned a lesson a very hard way and there really could not have been any other way.

I hate cleaning.  I hate dishes and cleaning counters.  I hate laundry.  I despise making beds.  My back aches at the thought of mopping floors.  Things that have to be done over and over and over with little to show for it just seem to weaken my soul and bring out the worst, most indignant teenager, version of myself.  Since recovering from the race car's addition, I've really been trying harder to stay on top of household chores.  I even mopped last month long before we were due to have company! I've been trying because I know I'm supposed to and that it makes everyone feel better.  It is important and I'm committed to being a good homemaker sooner or later!   So, as I stood in this miniature version of our kitchen at home that we had cooked in for 4 days in an attempt to save money, I was overcome with this feeling of completion and motivation.  I knew keeping this kitchen clean was easier because it was smaller and we hadn't lived here very long, but the mental clarity that came from the order we were maintaining was suddenly very intoxicating.

And that's when I realized it!  I had been told this little nugget of wisdom since I was a child, but it absolutely didn't matter.  It wasn't until I needed the blessing of a maintained space that I could really buy into the importance.  And the truth is, there is large part of me that doesn't need it to exist myself.  Messes are a part of life and creativity trumps all sometimes.  But now that I'm in charge of 3 little souls and all the things that go into keeping those plates balanced and spinning in the air, after all of the crashes and failures I've had over the last 8 years, now I need sanity, clarity, and order.  That, ugh, starts with a clean kitchen.  So, in that way, I'm really looking forward to getting home from vacation and figuring out new ways to keeping that kitchen clean.  I'm so proud of and annoyed with myself all at the same time. 

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