February 28, 2010
Lately I’ve been getting a lot of spam e-mail from maid service companies. How do they know what a wreck our house is? Is my computer monitor really a spy camera? Can they see the dust bunnies that have grown to the size of jack rabbits? Especially our basement office where we work. Bill’s supposed to be responsible for this area of the house, but like me, he’d rather do something else—anything else—than clean.
Summer is especially hard for not being motivated. We’d rather work in the yard, or sit on the back porch with an adult beverage and watch the leaves green, the birds swoop through the trees. the sheets flapping on the line. Sun-dried linens are the best. They smell great and make for better sleeping.
I believe that any woman who can afford to have someone else clean up the mess should hire someone to clean up the mess. Especially if she works full-time. We used to have maid service when I worked in the outside world, long hours, evenings, weekends. A while back, we had money enough to afford a weekly crew, especially when my mom was with us and we were her 24/7 caregivers, and then through my dad’s five years of living with us. But weekly became biweekly, which became every three weeks, then once a month as our income dwindled. Finally the twelve hundred plus dollars a year was just too much. So now, we’re in charge of mopping up our own slop. And we’re not doing it well.
It must be my mom’s voice in the back of my head that causes my nagging guilt. My mother worked full-time from my 13th year into her 60s; she’d come home on the bus, make a meat-starch-vegetable dinner for my dad every night. Wake up before the sun to make him breakfast, fill his thermos, and pack his lunchbox. Weekends, she’d grocery shop and clean. The house was you-can-eat-off-the-floor spotless. It was a different era.
How did she find the energy? Where did she find the will?