Tuesday, July 17, 2012

I'll stop doing it all when I die

I walked in the door at 11:35 p.m. to find a tornado had ripped through my kitchen. OK, the only actual natural disaster were Dave, Max and Sabrina, who'd been left to their own devices while I was in Utah at the Evo Conference. But you would have thought I had ten kids, and several husbands, from the scene: dishes piled high in the sink, toys scattered everywhere, mysterious sticky substances on the floor, newspapers and paper plates and cups all over the table.

En route home from the airport and exhausted, I'd had an idea of what lay in wait. Just ignore it until the next morning, I told myself.

I decided I'd just open some mail. I picked up one thing off the floor. Then another. Then another. I cleared off the table so that you could actually see table. I decided that I might as well load the dishwasher. I dabbed at some of the sticky spots.

I went to sleep at 1:30. Dave and both kids were in our bed, so I crashed in Max's room, curled up with his Cars 2 comforter.

Non-news flash: I have a problem with not doing stuff. It can never wait for tomorrow, my brain says, because tomorrow there will be 2,379 more things to do. Some days, the only thing I procrastinate is a bathroom break because I don't want to take the time.

At Evo, the digital director of RealSimple.com, Kathleen Harris, shared results of a Women & Time survey the magazine had done of 3,230 women. One out of two women say they don't have enough time (shocking only because every single woman didn't say that). Meanwhile, 60 percent of women said that knowing that all of their chores were done would enhance the quality of their free time a "lot."

I know I'm never going to cross off everything off my to-do list. The sticky spots of my life aren't going away. The best strategy, I think, lies in caring less about getting this stuff done pronto. And inventing a self-cleaning kitchen. And a self-cleaning husband and kids.

Mostly, though, I need to work on caring less.

Do you know what I mean?

Photo: Flickr/pj_vanf


  1. I can totally relate. If all of my chores and cleaning were done for me each day I know that my stress level would decrease significantly. I do lament the fact that I married someone that doesn't care as much as I do. I call my boys the Twinado because they can rip apart a room in mere seconds!

  2. I could start my own blog about this subject - I stopped going to my book group because I could not stand coming home to a mess - Going to the bathroom turns into if you give a mouse a cookie (toilet paper is almost out, there's a soap ring or puddle, where's that odor coming from...) -

    I work with a woman who is a single task person and lazy to boot - She is not ashamed of it - it drives me crazy - I am one of those "If my name is on it, it's going to be 110%" - My line is "I wish I could be a (that one task lady)" I was even bold enough to use that line after my boss told me and my co-teacher that despite our fabulous work creating the new Pre-K class and the amount of extra work we do, she could not adjust our compensation because she treats us all equally and everyone brings their own gifts to the table -

    There are days that I accept that it is just who i am - folding laundry while watching TV and noting that the living room needs to be swept - is normal - But then there are days that I resent my family for not doing more and taking a little off my plate

    I am blabbing and the dishwasher just stopped - Gotta go!

  3. Ellen,
    As you know I was at Evo too and came back to the same! Only my "kids" are basically adults so there's no excuse! The laundry room looked like a tsunami hit. Was great to connect however briefly at Evo!

  4. I don't know how my kids will ever learn to pick up after themselves when my husband is physically incapable of throwing away packaging or picking up his socks. So it's usually a choice between Chore A and Chore B (and C and D and so on), and I just have to try to ignore what I can't get to.

    "Twinado"--I like it!

  5. Nothing wrong with caring. You just need to care for yourself too, while you're caring for everyone else... you're worth it! :)

  6. I love that single women have more time. Really? Who knew that these kids and husband were taking away from "me time"...I agree, sometimes I just want to not care that I have a million things to do.

  7. I can't even begin to tell you how much I relate with this post right now! Just got back from a nice vacay (that was preceded by a whirlwind week-long meeting) and can never seem to stay on top of things! I stayed up until 1:30am getting stuff done because I couldn't take putting it off anymore!

    Whether it's adjusting to getting back home from a trip, recovering from a hosting a birthday party, recovering from Christmas...there are always things piling up on the to-do list.

    I just wish I didn't care as much either!! In fact, I'm in counseling to help me learn how to not care as much but it's SO HARD!! I like to have a clean house, clean and well dressed/combed kids, clean and folded laundry, clean self with makeup and hair done, etc. It's just so difficult to manage it all.

  8. YES!!! I so know what you mean!!! And here I am at 5 til midnight finally settling down to check on blogs!! Hang in there!! Caring can be good. If I gave up for about 5 minutes, I am pretty sure the world would implode.....RIGHT!?!?!?!?

  9. Oh, and a mom of four special needs kiddos who I respect like I respect you fondly calls her laundry Mt. Washmore and her sink Mt. Dishmore....makes it fun at least when you have to mention it!!!


Thanks for sharing!

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