I used to like housework. Not in a OCD kind of way, more that it's a job where you see good results at the end – a sparkling bathroom, a gleaming kitchen, a fresh scent in the air. I always got a great sense of achievement from giving the house a good scrubbing.
Since I had kids it has become a war. A battle that I constantly lose and makes me feel so depressed. It brings me a whole heap of stress and all in all, it plain sucks.
I have to admit it wasn't so bad when I had a baby or just one child. While I was tired, there was always a moment to clean the house and have it stay that way for a short time at least. Now, with two kids running around there is A LOT of mess and no time to clean it. Smears on the walls, grimy fingerprints on the cupboard, squashed sultanas in the carpet, etc, etc, etc. Within moments of mopping something up yet another cleaning catastrophe occurs.
When I attempt to clean a room, the kids are destroying another room somewhere in the house, so it's often a futile attempt. While I clean I feel guilty that I have to get them watching TV or something while I do it.
I briefly had a cleaner and it was nice having the house clean for, oh about 25 minutes. Surely enough within the hour of arriving home a child would have spilt a drink requiring the mop to be dragged out. Crumbled up a cracker requiring the vacuum to make an appearance. So, it seemed silly to be forking over cash when I was having to do the same thing within hours of the cleaner being here.
I hate having a house that's a bit grubby around the edges. That's messy and disorganised. I know it shouldn't, but I often feels that it reflects back on me. My failure. My ineptitude at being a good housewife.
Skip does his best, but he's at work 12 hours a day.
All this was going round my head that past two days as I've been giving the house a really good clean (yes, it took me two days). I finally finished my epic clean and decided to give a final vacuum. I finished vacuuming my bedroom and went to the girls' room. It had been completely destroyed. Every single toy pulled out of their toy cupboard, all the bedding pulled off their beds, they'd even taken all their clothes off. Firstly I was impressed that they'd managed so much destruction is such a short time – my bedroom is quite pokey and quite quick to vacuum. I didn't know whether to yell, scream or cry. I think I did a combination of all three.
I know it's such a first world whine, but I'm sure that for a lot of mums, dad, wives, husbands, that this domestic dullness is a big stress. I'm just trying to find a way to lessen the stress. I try not to worry, but I do. I know it won't last forever, but for the moment it drives me crazy.
Does housework stress you out? Do you have a secret? Or do you just not worry about it? I would love to hear about it!
PS – After worrying about this all yesterday, I had some news that stopped me in my tracks and made me realise that my worry was insignificant. Thankfully, everything turned out OK, but I do realise how good my life can be.