Tuesday, April 19, 2011

Hour-a-Day April: Day Nineteen

I don't know if I'm running out of steam, or if I'm just still reeling from a busy weekend and two cranky kids, but man, HADA is getting harder and harder. It's really disheartening to make so much progress in one area only to see it completely disappear when you turn your back to work on another area. It's like when you get down to a dungeon with monsters that breed explosively, and even though you keep killing them, and you're way stronger than they are, you just can't kill them faster than they can reproduce, and the only way to win is to give up and back away towards the stairs and hope they don't kill you before you get there. What? Was that reference too geeky? Okay, it's like trying to shovel a driveway covered in slush. Sure, you can clear a path, but it just slops back in around the sides of the shovel before you've gone two feet.

Speaking of shovels, I shoveled my living room floor today. I wanted to vacuum a stretch of carpet so I could safely put Dorothy down, so I grabbed a snow shovel and shoved all the toys over to the toy box corner of the room. I vacuumed the floor, then went over to the pile and put all the toys away. In fact, I got the living room floor completely clean today. It felt really good. For about 10 seconds, before Valerie dragged all of the dolls back out and spread them evenly across the floor. Just like the plague rats. Or the slush. Pick your preferred analogy.

Today I tackled an especially difficult area of my bedroom: the top of my dresser. That's the place where I put things that I don't want to lose, but don't have a place for. My lifeguarding whistle, the string from the waistband of my honeymoon pajamas, the rope from the rearview mirror of our first car, some half-dollar coins, stamps, a library card (which I don't need to carry, because I have a key tag), my bedroom diagrams and scale furniture models for rearranging, extra shoelaces. I found places for about half of the things, but a lot of it just moved one step over to the top of Jeremy's dresser, to join the ever-growing "want to keep but don't know where to put" pile. It was a tiny bit of progress, but it was disappointing progress, because it felt like so little.

I didn't get much else done today. The girls were needy, and I was worn out. I got some laundry done, including the first load of winter wear, which all needs to be washed so it can be packed away until next year. I'm trying not to get too disillusioned, but the month is more than half over, and I still have so far to go on the projects I want to get done. And, I hate to complain about this in a public forum, but all the little things that I need my husband to do (sort a stack of papers with his name on them, weed out his "too many for the drawer" shirt pile, go through the electronics boxes and tell me what I can't throw away, etc.) are still sitting waiting to be done. I can only make so much progress when I have to keep navigating around piles and boxes of things that I can't deal with myself, in case I accidentally get rid of something I didn't realize was important. And every hour I spend on bedroom sorting projects generates another 5-10 minutes of something I need his input on, so I'm avoiding certain projects because I don't want to generate more work for him before he gets through the stuff that is already waiting for his attention.

Sigh. Sorry for the whiny post. Normally I just don't blog when I'm feeling down and overwhelmed, or I blog about unrelated things to try and focus on the positive. So I guess this is a side of me that most of you don't see very often. Unfortunately, it's a side I see all too often myself. I want to look at myself and see this great mom that other people seem to see in me, but all I see are my shortcomings. The messy kitchen, the umpteenth episode of Diego that I'm letting Valerie watch today, the unfinished projects. Frankly, I fully expected to crash and burn with HADA, but I thought maybe, if I blogged about it, I just might make it through the month. Maybe I would get things clean enough to trade bedrooms with Valerie before the mess took back over again. But I don't dare dream of making a life habit of it. I don't believe I will ever be like those awesome moms, who cook three meals a day and wash all the dishes after every meal, who watch one movie a week on Friday night and no TV otherwise, who do crafts and projects with their kids every day, who still find time to read books and exercise. I want to be better, but I spend so many of my days just in survival mode, it's hard to find energy for anything else.

Day 19 tally: 30 minutes sorting stuff on top of dresser, 15 minutes winter laundry, plus I'm stealing those 15 minutes of extra time from yesterday. Total = 1 hour.


nivchek said...

shoveling works. I frequently sweep all the contents of a room to a pile and then sort. Grab the goodies and toss the rest!

bluebird16 said...

With a few variations, I could have written this post myself. The first 10 days went well, the second 10 not so much. Yesterdya and todya have been much more productive again, and I've given myself a talking-to so hopefully I can keep on track for the rest of th emonth and get some things accomplished.