I have decided that should I ever go away and trust the running of my home to anyone else, other than myself — it’s not worth going.
I mean it.
If I should have the opportunity to take a trip and leave everyone else at home again? I’m not going.
But everyone else has to leave the house, too.
I took my daughter on a Girls-Only-Mother-Daughter-Extravaganza. We had a blast. And I realized about 2 hours into the trip that this was the first time in 18 years that I’ve gone on a vacation and not had to pack/plan/take care of anyone else but myself. About 12 hours into the trip, I realized, Hey! I’m going to bed. And I just have to brush MY teeth, wash MY face, put on MY pjs and then hop into bed. (My 18-year-old daughter can do all that for herself now. Joy!)
When I woke up the next morning?
I woke up. Got showered and dressed. Grabbed my things and we were out the door.
I didn’t have to comb anyone else’s hair. I didn’t have to set out clothes for anyone or find missing shoes or tie anyone else’s shoes. I didn’t have to make sure we had all of “our” stuff. I didn’t have to hear “Hun, did you pack my swim suit?” or “Mom? Why can’t we have a maid at home?” (Uh, ya’ do!) I didn’t have to shush anyone 112 times down hotel hallways.
I came home.
My utopia vanished.
And they tricked me! That’s what really gets to me.
About 4 hours from home, I called from the road. In the background, I heard the vacuum cleaner. “We’re getting ready for you to come home,” my mother-in-law said, “Your husband said he wants you to come home to a clean house. Where do you keep the cleaning rags?”
Awwww. I melted. What a gem of a family I have.
So, for the rest of the drive I had visions of gleaming floors, folded laundry, shining bathrooms.
Dust bunnies, or should I say tumbleweeds, the size of my head. I’m not kidding. We have a golden retriever and he chose the week I left to shed at least two coats of fur. We could make another dog. When one tumbleweed wafted by as I opened the door I tried to ignore it.
What about the vacuum cleaner I heard?
“#2son knocked over your plant on your bedside table. I hope I got it all out of the carpet,” says sweet husband who insisted on white carpet in our bedroom because it will be our oasis, away from the kids and they’ll never be in there.
Hampers are overflowing. Escaped socks and damp towels are trying to make a break for laundry room.
“I didn’t know how you liked your laundry done,” says sweet mother-in-law.
Clean, I think to myself.
The bathrooms? I’m too embarrassed to even think of a witty description. I’ve tried. I sat here, mouth agape, trying to be clever. Besides my mother-in-law, there were two grown men and two small boys making their presence known, if you get my drift. Disgusting is all that comes to mind.
I’ve been home a week and I’m just now coming up for air.
Nope. It’s decided. Go on a vacation, by myself, and leave my home in someone else’s hands?
(Disclaimer: My mother-in-law is, indeed, a gem. She plays with the boys, she takes them on adventures, she cooks and bakes and keeps the kitchen sparkling. The zones described above were, apparently, out of her jurisdiction.)