I woke up early today.
I cleaned my entire house. I’m talking bathrooms, floors, and balconies. To some that may sound like a simple job, but I usually segment these chores into 3 because I get tired easily. My knees hurt because by noon I lose all my energy reserves,…etc.
I had been telling myself lately that it wasn’t my fault that I wasn’t keeping up with my cleaning schedule because my son isn’t going to school.
I had been telling myself that it wasn’t my fault that my son was waking me up at 8:30 am and I was waking up tired and struggling to get some me-time. As a result, I would sit on my phone at every chance I got, to read or watch youtube videos or scroll on Instagram, or save pictures on Pinterest, just because I was rebelling against the unfair prospect that it wasn’t my fault my son couldn’t go to school.
I have been depressed for a week. The protests have been going on for 10 days in Lebanon. I was going along my day like a falcon with a broken wing. I can’t fly. All I feel is pain.
Then yesterday, the realization hit me. As I looked around at the mess that was contributing to my sadness (look it up: a clean home is a happy home) I realized that I had 2 opportunities to clean my house. Twice my husband took my son to my in-laws for hours and both times I spent my time watching Pretty Little Liars because of “self-care”. I forgot that cleaning my house is also self-care, it just requires a little more effort.
Don’t misunderstand me here; I’m always on schedule with dishes, laundry, and tidying up. I even mopped my house 3 times during these 10 days (not counting today because today is day 11).
But every time I would think of cleaning the bathrooms, I would tell myself:
- Let me wait until my son gets back to school. It could be any day now.
- I’m too tired.
- My muscles ache.
- My knees hurt.
- I can’t wake up earlier than my son. I would be exhausted by noon.
But these, this morning I realized, were just excuses. When I got to the point where I realized that:
- My son may not go back to school soon.
- I will always have aches and pains.
- If I want to clean, I will need to wake up before my son does.
When I went to bed, at midnight because that is almost when my son finally went to sleep (I heard a podcast on bedtime struggles this morning and I realized I have been doing everything wrong), I slept with the thought in mind that if I wanted a clean house, I would have to get up and clean it.
Not wait for my son to go back to school.
Not wait till it’s convenient for me.
Not wait till I feel like it, because just like exercising, I’m never going to “feel like it”, but I will feel much better after I get it done.
So here I am, with a clean house at 8 am, feeling like a champion.
I’m going to make coffee now, watch Pretty Little Liars before my son wakes up (my reward), and have something to eat because coffee is not healthy on an empty stomach.
Just a tip for doing something when you don’t feel like doing it, whether it is exercising or housework, listen to something while you do it. I listen to podcasts while I do housework, but it could also be music or audiobooks or Quran (not while cleaning the bathrooms though).
Another tip to keep up to date with cleaning is to have a weekly cleaning schedule. I have one of those but I find I’m only able to apply it when my son is going to school (not under the current circumstances) so I marked my calendar and wrote what I cleaned on this date so that I can know when cleaned what.
Best of luck, and may you have a clean and happy home!
P. S. My little munchkin just woke up at 8:30 am as I just finished editing this blog. I had my pancakes, sipped a little bit of my coffee, but I haven’t watched any Pretty little liars yet. Oh well…