Anticipation (8 of 31)

Who does this?  It is 10:00 pm, the night before my new cleaning lady comes to clean my house.  I have spent the last three hours furiously stirring up dust as I de-clutter, rearrange, and whisk away all the items that I’ve been walking around for the past…  for a long time.

Sound familiar?  I am cleaning before the cleaning lady cleans.  Why?

I grew up in an era when the matriarchs of the community still tried to put Donna Reed to shame.  I think I do pre-cleaning cleaning because I feel like I have let down an entire generation of June Cleaver women and my Mom.

So, I strive to alleviate my feelings of inadequacy by sprucing up the house so that the cleaning lady won’t remember what a mess and dust bin I live in.  Pride?  Desire for self-sufficiency?  Guilt?  Yes. Yes. And yes.

Now I am sitting in front of my computer, sneezing and wheezing from my cleaning endeavor, grateful to be writing.  And, I am anticipating coming home from a long day of work tomorrow and relaxing in a clean, tidy house.  I may even put on a starched cotton frock and dress pumps as I lounge on my couch taking in the comfort of a clean home.

Maybe not.  Who even owns a dress that needs to be starched these days?

With house pre-cleaned, the guilt is slipping away.  I recall that my mother usually followed up my cleaning attempts with her cleaning success.  She set high standards and taught my sister and me how to achieve clean-house perfection.  Not once has Mom ever judged me for not keeping my house tip-top.

Perspective:   “Super clean housekeeper” doesn’t have to be on my list of accomplishments.  My mom taught me how to clean house; she also teaches me that it is okay to live, dream, and follow other passions.  Thank you, Mom!  I will call you tomorrow night when I am enjoying my clean house.

New shoes


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