Last month a friend's Facebook status read: If I had a blog or website about being a working mom, I'd call it, "You can't eat off my floors."
I laughed really hard, because it’s completely true and it captured one of those areas where I often feel inadequate.
My mother kept a cross-stitch sampler on the wall in my childhood home that read, “Dull women have immaculate houses.” So I can't really credit her with raising us to be a "traditional housewife” or any other specific female stereotype. Still, I must have learned from somewhere that “as a Mom,” I’m supposed to keep a clean house and provide my family with healthy meals.
I need a maid.
Heck, I need a Mom.
Doesn’t everyone have a floor, especially in the kitchen, that makes you just cringe? How does it get so dirty? I’m never home! That goes double for the carpet. If we’re only home for a few hours every evening, why do I have to vacuum it more than once a month?
The other adult women in my life have “perfect” homes. They can go from “Oh it’s crazy around here” to picked up for company in about an hour.
I need at least two weeks.
If our families were going to come our house for a holiday or other event, I’d actually need to request an entire day off from work to clean the house.
My sister and sister-in-law love figuring out what color to paint something or how to decorate the walls. Everything matches. No really, it’s darn impressive. My other sister-in-law just moved into a new house and she’s an artist. Enough said? Definitely.
I have a house filled with hand-me-downs, hand-me-overs; there are exactly three pieces of furniture that I bought. (The roll-top desk, my daughter’s dresser, and the entertainment center that the tv doesn’t fit anymore. Wait.. four! We bought an Ikea bookcase for the bedroom.)
Thanks to Lisa and my sister-in-law, with many other family members willing to help paint, my house was slowly developing the potential to look -maybe- decorated. They shared some of their vision, selecting paint colors for the inside of my house. They’ve brought me curtains that look beautiful (how do they know?) and even rearranged furniture. Of course now, we’re spending weekends purging closets and considering how to move our daughters from separate bedrooms to a shared one, in anticipation of our new arrival due this October.
Lately I’ve found myself wondering how do other working moms deal with the constant mess. And with her one simple FB status, my friend reminded me – sometimes we don’t.
Copyright 2011 Shelly Kelly
About the Author
Shelly Henley Kelly is a daughter of God, a Martha who strives to be Mary, living in the world, but not of the world, perpetually busy as breadwinner, wife, mother, catechist, and ACTS sister. A published author, Shelly writes about being a working mom and catechist at SoundMindAndSpirit.com and can be heard on various podcasts at SQPN.com.