Two times of day, I have peaceful solitude. The first is early morning devotions, and the second is when the day is done. The house is quiet and I check in on what happened in the world. For the latter, sometimes I sneak in a conversation with one of my friends. Those small touch point chats encourage me for bonding moments where we swap stories and giggles. So it was a few days ago while talking online with a friend. Truth be told, she and I have only met once, introduced by mutual friends. Initially, our friendship was sparked over a common life experience – losing a child – but we have since learned that we share many other interests.
During this chat, we shared more than a few laughs as we talked about our busy days. At some point, the tone of the repartee took a cathartic turn bonding over things that frustrate us– like chores that never end and lessons we are continually teaching our kids. Since we’ve only met the one time briefly, she quickly relayed that she loved her kids, lest I think otherwise.
Do not get me wrong! I realize that our “worries” are first world problems and that much of the world would love to have has many dishes to wash because that would mean there is food to eat. I also realize that the beast, also known as laundry, pales to those who don’t have adequate clothing or shoes. My world is a blessed one compared to a majority of the world.
Yet, I completely understand her thinking. My children are the world to me. PERIOD. However, they much like their mother are not perfect, and there are days that I feel like I am instilling the same lesson over and over. It is tiring, humbling, and on more than one occasion, frustrating. I have even warned my children with drafting a letter to their future college roommates sending my apologies and explaining that I did my best.
Instead of futuristic letter writing, I decided to put my years of training as a classroom teacher to good use. If nothing else, I got my frustrations out, and had a good chuckle while doing so. What is written below is the result of my overactive imagination.
Carefully read through each question and answer to the best of your ability.
Section One: True or False
Please circle the appropriate answer.
- True or False. The appropriate time to remember that you stashed dirty clothes in your closet and under your bed is when Mom has finished all the laundry for the day.
- True or False. Mom’s van also serves as a closet for your stinky clothes following sleepovers, playdates, or sports practice.
- True or False. The best place to store uneaten candy is in your pants pocket.
- True or False. The best time of day to remember you need your jersey washed for tomorrow’s game is at 2:00 AM.
- True or False. Clothes that have been worn for less than an hour and are not stained should immediately land in the dirty clothes pile.
Please go back and look over your answers in Section One. Your choices might determine whether your mother chooses to reveal herself as Emperor Palpatine later at dinner tonight.
Section Two: Multiple Choice.
6. Places where your dirty clothes should not be found
a. Mom’s van (HINT: you might want to go back and double check your answer to #2)
b. Your floor (especially if your room is next to the laundry room)
c. The dirty clothes pile/basket
d. The bathroom floor
e. Both a & b
f. Answers a, b, & d are correct.
7. When walking downstairs while carrying nothing, a good use for your hands and arms might be
a. Try to find the best location for future tattoos
b. Flex your muscles to see how much time you need to put in at the gym
c. Pick up dirty clothes pile and take to the laundry room
d. Practice stiff arm placement for Irish dance lessons
8. When you do not put away clothes from your own assigned basket, the message you are sending your mother is
a. Oops, I forgot! (Remember your mother wrote a song about this, and she would be happy to share it on YouTube.)
b. Cha-ching! Extra money for college funds! Reasoning: We don’t each need a room. We would like to live hostel-style. All of our clothes can be kept in the laundry room, and we can rent out our current rooms.
c. We don’t really like our clothes all that much, and we hate to break our mother’s heart. Feel free to donate those clothes to less fortunate children.
d. Winter has been hard in Minnesota. We hear that they are in need of warm materials for bed linings at the Humane Society. Stay warm four legged friends!
9. The thing to be done with clothes hanging on the drying rod is:
a. open a rather eclectic boutique in the basement.
b. fold them and place in the owner’s basket.
c. offer them as wardrobe for the next class play.
d. hide behind them in an epic game of Hide-N-Seek.
10. If you are able to read English and you are suffering from no mobility issues, you are also capable of
a. Placing a load of dirty clothes in the washer and starting said washer.
b. Placing a load of clean clothes in the dryer or hanging clean clothes on drying rod.
c. Folding clean and dry clothes.
d. Getting a job of any means to pay for having the family’s laundry sent out.
e. All of the above are correct answers.
f. Okay, a, b, & c are more realistic answers.
Meanwhile . . . back to reality.
Mothers (and fathers) of the world – JOIN ME!
Well, maybe you can . . . after you unbury yourselves from Mount St. Laundry.
Who knows, I might just start penning that letter . . . after I get the next load of laundry done.