Asskaban inspired me to say something about beginnings.
My parents were good people, yet our house got increasingly chaotic and embarrassingly messy as I grew up. I’m sure my mother was very depressed. Eventually I wasn’t allowed to invite people over. As my mother got older, she developed Alzheimer’s, and it got SO much worse. Cleaning that place up after her death was ….. no words.
So that is the hell I knew, much more intimately than I ever wanted to. My little island of neatness in my half of the bedroom (shared with a messy sister) didn’t make much difference.
Eventually I got work cleaning for some of the women I babysat for, and was good at it. When I moved out on my own, I figured I could do that and support myself, so I did. Not the smartest move of my life, but it worked until I married, and I kept some of my favorite clients until late into my first pregnancy a couple of years later.
Our first little house was old and hard to make attractive, but we didn’t have much stuff, so it was easy to clean. THIS house started out full of stuff we had to store, and I only got more stuff even after selling most of the excess stored crap. Sooo easy to get moar stuff in this culture! Cheap, too. Garage sales, junk shops, people give you stuff, kids drag stuff home — damn!
Between having three great kids, and having quite a few other people living with us over the next 30 years (including a cousin who became a beloved son), we have picked up lots of possessions. And during these busy years, my good cleaning habits disappeared, as other jobs took my time and attention.
Now it’s just me and my husband, and I want this place clean and attractive. It helps that we have money to spend on things now, and hubby is willing to do so.
Today was just a basic vacuum and dust day, which is nothing to write home about, but it is done, with extra rests since I had oral surgery last week. And I did take the Magic Eraser to a few groady spots on the linoleum. That will help until I have the courage to strip the old wax off (horrors).
Unfuckyourhabitat has been a huge inspiration to me in the last few weeks. I wish my mother had been surrounded by such supportive, helpful people when she sank into depression and let the house go to hell. I wish I had found this 30 years ago when I started to let things slide, as well. But I have you NOW. So rather than losing hope, and running out of enthusiasm, I will continue in my quest to make this place pretty, and easy to care for.