Tuesday, 6 May 2008

Monday that feels like a Friday night and not because of the anticipation of going out, dressing up, meeting friends. Those were the Fridays of yesteryear, long gone. If I could see myself on a Friday night, I would see a woman who started the day full of energy, and ended up dragging her body and consciousness through the motions of putting the kids to bed so she could also crash on her pillow. That’s how I feel tonight. Today I scourged the garage floor, cleaned the air purifier filter, made lunch, did dishes, did laundry, nursed a baby, cleaned the floors, steamed high chair, steamed area rug in Princess’ room, had Family Home Evening, took Princess to ballet rehearsal, payed bills online, drove to the accountant to leave paperwork… Not all in that specific order, and a few of those things simultaneously. I’m not posting my chore list to brag about what I do, but just to show how insane I am. I do the same things again and again, and I realize a lot of the things I do are important and essential for the family to function, but others, the things that aren’t urgent, are the only things that truly matter and that I tend to leave for last. Teaching El Cangri and Chubbers how to do housework, listening to my Princess when she comes home from school, singing happily while Gorgeous Boy leads the music during Family Night. 

I feel so elated when I do those little things that make my kids the happiest, but the unimportant things trap me like a fish in a hook. Why am I so obsessed with a clean house? I don’t know. My sister is the same way. Growing up, our house was clean, but not immaculate. I think it’s just a way to have control, release stress and show that we work and we’re a kind of superwoman for having a clean house. I wish I were more relaxed, that I could smile more easily, and make time to see my babies grow. There will always be laundry to be washed, floors to be cleaned, counters to be wiped. But the babies will grow, and tomorrow I will have four grown people whom I hope will love me and want to be with me, still.      

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Yamile Saied Mendez

Yamile (sha-MEE-lay) Saied Méndez is a fútbol-obsessed Argentine-American, Picture Book, Middle Grade, and Young Adult author.

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