When X and I were first married, it was frustrating sharing space. Specifically, it was frustrating sharing space with someone who had a vastly differing opinion when it came to clutter and cleanliness. I frequently had to remind him that I wasn't a "maid with a Master's". It got the point across. Mind you, not that I looked down on maids. HELL NO.
Two weeks ago, I bid "adieu" to Molly Maid. It was an awkward parting when I hugged K and R goodbye. No, I'm not going to wax poetic on our beautiful friendship and how we are going to meet for coffee and hence forth, be BFFs. It wasn't like that, but it was a relationship of sorts and I will miss them. And I will call them when NewKid is born so they can come by and meet her. They were nice, honest, hard-working gals and we paid them a fair and honest wage for their services. The #1 thing that I adored about having a cleaning service was the steadfast deadline I had for doing my part in clearing my house of clutter. They arrived every other Monday at 7:45 am sharp. If I hadn't done my part yet, they couldn't do their job effectively. And while they were working hard, I took that as an opportunity to get some other things done as well. While they worked, we chatted. I will miss K's "advice" - often, it was unsolicited and usually, it was WAY off mark for my parenting style. I will miss how patient R was with Arun and how she would let him push the vacuum a bit because he LOVED it and would follow her around excited, eager and giggly.
We signed up for a cleaning service after taking a pre-marital counseling class the Church requires. It was X's idea - after all, he grew up in India, the land of moderately priced manual labor. His mother was a SAHM and always had housekeepers - for him, it was a no-brainer that we get a housecleaning service when we were both working so much and traveling as well. When I started staying home while pregnant with Arun, X insisted we keep the service. I think it helped ease his guilt for my bearing so much of the household load alone while he was out of town so frequently. X was still insisting we keep the service for as long as possible to get me through this new pregnancy, but I decided to cancel early. I really want to devote as much resources as possible to the Big Idea. If and when the Big Idea becomes an Even Bigger Idea, I will begin the cleaning service again.
In a heartbeat.
I've come a long way with that. When we first signed up for the service, I felt incredibly guilty. GUILTY. I felt downright sheepish when I started staying home full-time and we still had the service. Now, I realize that was the stupidest waste of emotion ever. Why feel guilty? Yep, it was a luxury and dammit, it was a luxury I loved having. Some girls can spend an entire day at a spa or spend oodles of money going to the salon to get their hair done or blow serious cash buying clothes they will soon discard in favor of the next season's flavor. The thought of spending a day at the spa sounds so tiresome and boring that I actually pissed off a bride once when I refused to do a day spa thing she wanted all of her bridesmaids to do with her. And I'm over the whole salon thing. And while I love reading about fashion, I don't really like buying clothes. Borders, Amazon and the Dusty Bookshelf are my choices of credit card poison. So, there you have it. My latest confession of how lame I am. I love having a clean house. Fresh vacuum tracks and a light fragrance of bleach brings me a peace of mind like no other.
So, I started cleaning the house tonight because I am determined to keep to the schedule we had with the cleaning service. I wish I could come up some grandiose post about how I gained great satisfaction from a job well done and that it was Totally!Cool! to do it myself and Gee Golly, now I'm a better, more enlightened person. But I can't and I won't. It sorta sucked. It was mostly boring.
But, it wasn't that bad either. And it will make me appreciate the cleaning service all the more when we eventually sign them back up. Nope, no more guilt the next time - that's for sure.