I had a long talk with the dishes this evening, and it seems they flat-out refuse to wash themselves. I tried offering them a ride in the dishwasher if they’d only talk their clean brethren into dismounting the machine and making for the cabinet in an orderly way.
I also stopped by to share my feelings with the laundry. Collectively, they seem resolutely opposed to washing and drying themselves. Folding is out of the question. And though they tend, eventually, to get themselves put back into the basket once they’re worn, I have never once, despite kind reminders, seen them place themselves into closets or drawers.
I don’t know when this mutiny began, but I feel it’s absolute. The floors categorically deny their role in the family’s lives, and refuse to mop themselves. I sweep, often, because I know the stuff that seems to reproduce itself into well-distributed floor decorations is too heavy for the floor to remove itself. But mopping shouldn’t be a big deal. And yet the floors refuse.
What have I done to earn this level of disrespect from the household? I’m thinking of taking the beds to a counselor, based on their seeming inability to change their own sheets.
The fridge openly mocks me in its disdain for either cleaning itself or staying clean once I sigh deeply and take on the task myself, despite knowing full well it’s my job to teach not to do the chores myself.
The bathrooms seem untrainable, too. What’s so hard about spray and wipe? We have eco-friendly bio-enzyme cleaners…you don’t even have to rinse yourselves, sinks and shower!
But no. They’re all engaged in a disrespectful mutiny in which I’m the default cleaner. Kindness hasn’t worked. Training them as though cleaning is fun hasn’t worked. Bribes do nothing. And gentle lectures about how we’re all in this family together and should each do our part has fallen upon seemingly impenetrable ears.
I don’t know what to do. Well, actually, I do. Because it’s what I do after the weekly or biweekly entreaties fail: clean everything myself.
Well, okay, not the floors or fridge. They’re older and I expect more from them.
I’ll keep hoping. And teaching. And communicating. Maybe in 30 years, when the floors are mopping themselves in someone else’s house, and the dishes live by themselves but manage to keep clean, then I’ll know I did my job well.
But until then, I’m frustrated as hell and running out of hope that the house will clean itself.