Do you ever have a thing? Something that, when not done to your liking, makes you a bit nutty? My thing is clean floors in my home. I know, you’re probably thinking that is the last thing someone should care about, but for me, it really does make me happy.
My family always picks on me for my thing. “Gussy, get back outside! You’re dragging dirt in the house,” they call after a rainstorm. “Take your shoes off before you enter,” they tell their friends and they are so programmed to do so, they never leave shoes on when entering someone else’s home. When I went back to work full-time, my husband agreed to hire someone to help with the cleaning bi-weekly and, ever since, my thing is to clean the floors within 24 hours of her having ever so kindly cleaning our mess.
Just the other day, my ten year old son was trying to help out around the house to earn a little extra spending money. He decided to take it upon himself to take care of the floors. I cringed when he asked, thinking “This means I’ll have to do it all over again once he’s done”. Again-I fully realize it’s my thing. Knowing I had to rise above the occasion and embrace his newfound sense of responsibility, I big my tongue and let him drag good ‘ole Hoover out of the closet just beyond the kitchen. He raced down the basement stairs to grab a clean mop head out of the rag drawer in our laundry room and darted back up with mop and cloth in hand. Again, bit my tongue. “You can do this. You really can. Be a good mom. The mom that is proud of her boy for helping out around the house” I repeated over and over again in my head. I held back and was very proud of myself, despite my inner questioning of “Why isn’t he getting the corners” or “”Oops! He missed that spot… and that one … Oh! Don’t forget to move the chairs out of the way!”
I suppose it’s baby steps for this mom. I gave him an allowance, praised him for helping out and taking responsibility and … well, when he headed outside to play-vacuumed and mopped the places he missed! There’s just something about walking around my home, barefoot, without having crumbs, dog hair and leftover food sticking to my feet that has become my thing.