The Routine of Clean

Who likes cleaning? That’s right, a whole lot of nobody. At least, not me. Has anyone else had the amazing realization, after moving out of their parents’ home, that the consequences of not cleaning can literally pile up? They pile up on the dining table and kitchen counters, they pile up on the bathroom floor, the bedroom floor, and they start piling up on all available surfaces…

I moved out of my parents’ house in college, and I had some roommates. I never got the hang of doing laundry regularly, but I was pretty on top of the dishes. Because old dirty dishes… gross. But my roommate was also good about doing dishes, so our kitchen never spiraled out of control or anything, even if I got bogged down with something else.

But once I got married, I realized just how quickly the entire house can get out of control. And for five years now I’ve really really tried to keep it clean. And at some point removing dirty dishes from the table, washing pots and pans, running the dishwasher, all became part of a mindless routine, instead of out-of-the-way tasks I would put off as long as possible. That’s what I realized last night when I came home from a full-day Toastmasters conference.

It’s not like I left the place impeccably clean, but there weren’t any dirty dishes laying around, no dirty pans, and the dishwasher was empty. The dishwasher was still empty… but the sink was full, the stove was covered (with used pans), and there were plates and bowls in every room, on side tables, ottomans, chairs, and the dining table.

I was a tiny bit annoyed at all the dishes I was just about to have to clean up, but it took just a couple of minutes to get everything washed and put away, and I realized that I do this every day, and for the most part keep the dishes under control. So hooray! I’m a success!