The other night, my husband and I had a conversation, we’ll say, about what I do around here and how he thinks I can do it better. He had a myriad of questions for me with solutions that in no way, would ever work in this house. Instead of being aggravated with him, you know, because I am going to his office later this week and telling him how to work more efficiently, I decided to listen to his delusions and nod agreeably and then roll my eyes behind his back.
I did find it interesting, however, that he thinks things can be scheduled, planned, completed and done in an orderly fashion. Let us not forget that he has had all three kids alone for longer than one hour a total of once in his lifetime. And at that time, two were asleep. So… he is defiantly the expert when it comes to advice on how to handle a household while raising three small drama queens.
But, in the interest of being open minded and proving him wrong – lest I get a pedicure out of it – I decided to attempt some of his very well thought out, reasonable, easy solutions to my issues with the kids… and the house… and the dogs…. and myself.
We’ll start with the thing that he says should be the absolute easiest to accomplish every day without fail. My getting a shower. By far, it is truly in my best interest, as well as friends and family, that I get a shower every day. Showers are refreshing and help me start the day with a bounce and air of cleanliness. To be honest, though, they require an enormous amount of effort on my account and getting one with the kids awake is virtually impossible!
His suggestion was that I sit the children in front of their favorite show and get a quick shower every day.
Ok honey, here we go. I ask the girls what show they want to watch. Dora. Wubzzy. Da. Now, unless I have the desire to set up three children in front of three televisions, pray that those particular shows are on right now, and if not, search the DVD’s to find said show, I already have a problem. I could just put on whatever is on and pray that all three choose to stop fighting long enough to get interested in it collectively, but that is a long shot and rarely happens. Hence why our TV is off a lot lately. Add to that that the one year old could care less about watching her beloved “Da” on TV and I am already an hour into trying to take a shower.
The next solution to this precarious problem is to shower with the girls. Do I even need to get into why that is such a brilliant idea right now? Or can we all figure it out for ourselves? Let’s see. Lori and three children in a shower. Lori trying to get clean while also wrangling three kids who all want to have a cup, fight over a cup, throw a cup, beg for more cups. Assuming I actually get clean with baby shampoo – adult shampoo won’t work, it might fall into their eyes – I then have the pleasure of either a) letting them all stay in the shower until the entire neighborhood is out of hot water or b) having them kick and scream for an hour because I dragged them out of the shower before they were all wrinkly and prunny.
Since I now have to clean up spilled cereal, banana and water, change a diaper, a pair of panties and help another get dresses, I think I’ll have to try to get a shower another time.
The next topic of discussion is the cleanliness of the house. The fact that before we had children, shoot, even after we had one child and an infant, there was not a speck of dirt in my house. My laundry, dishes and toilets were always done and I never had any problems finding time to dust. Even when I worked full time, the house was clean. Because back then, he helped me you see. Oh, he helps me now… by solving my cleanliness challenged ways.
His first suggestion was to let the kids trash the house in the mornings and then at about 2 or 3 in the afternoon, sit them in front of a movie and clean the house so that when he comes home, it is all put back together.
I feel sorry for the man so I really tried – hard – to hide the laughter that threatened to escape from the core of my being. Besides the fact that my children, as previously mentioned, would not ever agree on one movie, nor the fact that the baby does not care about a movie, let’s just analyze his rational.
Let the kids trash the house and then, automatically, at 2pm, they will stop playing with their toys, books and colors and sit, silently, in front of a movie and, for the rest of the day – or at least the next 5 or 6 hours, until my husband gets home, they will not touch another item. And for my magical efforts, that would have to include my drugging them, he gets to come home to a clean house so that he can lay on the floor with them, watch them get out every toy they own and then never make them clean it up or help me by cleaning it up?
So then, the next day, I have the mess from the night before plus all of the new mess they will make in the mornings during “let’s trash the house day”. That sounds like the most fun I will ever have in my life.
More issues were discussed and solved and really, I can understand his frustration. He and I are not, by nature, messy people. We, apparently, did not pass on that wonderful, obsessive trait to my children. So I am not angry at him and really do concur that some thing has to be done. And since he really is not here very often, I lovingly embrace his naivity.
And I do admit that were I to use my time more wisely and not blog, or post on Facebook, or waste time chatting with friends, I could probably get everything he expects to be done…. done. Because after working really hard all day at a high stress position to put food on the table, it really is a small thing to ask. But as it has been established, I choose to waste some time each day for my sanity.
But if I ever hear again that I – translation he – would be happier if I followed his suggestions on how to run my household, I might have to chop off the very organ that created said household!