I know the title is a little alarming, but trust me, childbirth usually has a happy ending and so will this post.
10 days ago I started an experiment to really work to get some cleaning and organizing done in my house before the holidays. You can read about that here.
It started with a flurry of activity. For the first 7 days or so I was really into it. I was cleaning every day and I actually started to enjoy it.
You know what it is like when you make up with a friend after a fight or go through a rough patch with your fellow co-workers but then you come out the other end of it stronger and knowing each other better? That is what it was like with my house and I. I felt like I was making up for so many times I had wronged her. All of a sudden I found myself in love with her again. It’s like we had the best “make up sex” you could ever imagine. (yes, I just compared cleaning my house to sex)
Seriously though, I really started to find that I enjoyed my house and I really wanted to take care of it. It was less of a chore. It was nice.
Steve then did a great project on his closet. He put new shelves in and got rid of a ton of things he didn’t need any more. Normally this would have been awesome, but a lot of the things he didn’t want anymore didn’t make it all the way to the Goodwill or stored in a different location. They got moved to my hall. Then I got slammed with three really busy days. The house started to fall behind. Random things were being left around and I just started to feel MAD about the whole project. I felt like the honeymoon was over and here was reality. Cereal on the floor, clothes thrown all over, random clutter and just as I think I am going to get to the next load of laundry the baby needs to nurse or, or, or…..
I was also really worried because the 10 day cut off on my experiment was coming soon. What the heck was I supposed to say in this post? It was gong really good but now I am just back to my old ways????!!!!!
By Tuesday night I was doing a bit better though and got a handle on a lot of the clutter and messes that had built up the past few days. I got the kids to bed early and I actually had a few quiet moments to get some stretching and exercise in.
I was on the floor thinking I was all on top of it again and what do I smell? Cat pee. GREAT.
Thanksgiving came. The last day of my experiment. I came home from our wonderful family dinner and found the remnants of breakfast on the dining room floor, undone laundry and just the result of having both girls home all day. It was my last night. I had to do something.
I got the girls to bed and started cleaning. I got the kitchen clean, the bathroom done, random things in the living room put away and then started on vacuuming the upstairs. Then all I could hear was something my midwife said to me, “don’t let the pain get out of control, stay on top of it”. When you are in the middle of those final contractions before you are ready to push it is really intense. If you don’t find a way to get control of your body and really find a rhythm with your breathing you will just lose it. The midwife’s advice really helped me. I figured out a way to just concentrate, manage the pain and almost just put my body under my mental control so I could get through it.
I realized while I was vacuuming like a crazy lady that the same holds true for everything. You need to stay on top of things. If I get a load out of the laundry, fold it. Put it away. If I see something lying around, pick it up. Even if I am a little tired and just want to flop down on the couch, make a little more effort to just handle the messes of the day. In that way it doesn’t get out of control and totally overwhelm me.
At the end of my labor with my third baby which was the most intense for me of all the girls, I had the most amazing gift. I had Phoebe. She is a joy. All the work was totally worth it.
Now I know all the work to keep my house pretty is worth the effort too. It makes me and my family happy.