March 25, 2014

A lesson on idealism

I'm all about leaving a legacy and hope to aspire to some mild form of greatness so my children can place me in the legacy leaver category one day. I've also decided that should I ever attain such a status, I had better get my butt in gear now - if I don't get on board when I have two children, it sure isn't going to happen when I have four. When it comes to legacies, my grandmothers and mother set quite the standard of cleanliness. And while I will never achieve their level of clean, I realized I could up the ante just a little bit. So in an attempt go above and beyond the average swiffering, I decided to go for an all out hands and knees floor mopping - the good old way of generations past. 

It wasn't too long before I realized the "generations past" must have had much more fortitude than I. Soon after I began, I decided I was going to be happy if I just finished the kitchen floor. Soon after that I told myself to settle with just part of the kitchen floor getting done. And not much longer after that, I took a mental note of why mothers of small children don't generally choose this version of floor cleaning. I grossly underestimated the time it was going to take and the level of difficulty it required. Being a mother of small children was key, as I'm sure my entire house would have sparkly clean floors had no other little hands been involved.

Seeing water, Rori naturally wanted to join the fun. In the spirit of this article, I had committed myself to allowing her all "real play" that came our way, so I complied and gave her her own rag. It took me two tiles-worth of cleaning to realize she was more about getting the floor all wet and not so much about trying to mimic her mother's lofty efforts of cleaning. One moment too trusting and the puddles multiplied times five.

In the name of sanity and still holding to the said ideals of play, Rori was awarded her own bowl of water and sent to clean the laundry room floor. I resolved to not care about whatever happened there, and sent a kind warning to Brian to watch his step when he came home for lunch. 

Things were going swimmingly for a whole three minutes before I heard a big "OH NO!" and an announcement that someone's under garments were all wet. 

She was undressed before I reached her, and I was left to decipher whether the "all wet" was from an "accident" or  from her bowl of water that had been poured all over the floor. I couldn't be sure, and she couldn't tell me. So a change of clothes it was - outfit number 3 for the day because her first attempts to clean the kitchen with me landed her equally soaked. And wouldn't you know it - she hates to be wet. 

So a change of clothes and a big clean up later, we were both back at our posts - undeterred from all obstacles that seemed to be rolling our way. Despite all my efforts at being a good mother and house cleaner, I had forgotten to send the fair warning of slippery floors to Rori - and down she went. Hard. 

And that was the end of my floor cleaning. 

We had an early lunch since I needed an early nap. Somehow lunch dragged out an extra long minute and landed nap time at the exact same time it always is. I found myself vowing to never reach for any lofty ideal again no matter how simple it seemed. It will be no legacy leaving for me.

Brian came home, afforded me a nice long shower while he wrapped up things with the kids, and left with a text message about a package being on the front porch. 

To sleep or to go check the front door? I chose to put off sleeping for a few minutes more, because, what could it hurt? And this - this greatness from Carrie - was awaiting me. Perfectly timed and perfectly packed with all items necessary for redeeming our day. When it comes to ideals - idealistic friends are the best. Enough said.

1 comment:

  1. Ideals regarding cleanliness are so overrated. One of my Nana's legacies was the idea of having a "chuckery" in your home (defined as "the room in which you chuck all your things before guests come over so your home appears to be uncluttered and clean.") Now THAT is a legacy I can embrace. :o) Happy to spread some cheer your way!