A fair while ago, I read this post about The Messy Charade over at Maxabella Loves… and was a little taken aback because, well, I often tell people “don’t mind the mess” when they enter my home. But then when I read further, I realised she meant that it was beyond silly to say “don’t mind the mess” when there obviously was no mess, or to be worried about being judged on the current state of cleanliness and tidiness of our homes.
Phew. Totally doesn’t apply to me because my house IS actually a mess. All. The. Time. And I must say “don’t mind the mess” because it is important that people are directed through the path of debris from the front door to the one clean spot on the couch very carefully. I should probably just start saying: “careful not to fall over that, or this, or that” whilst directing people through my home with air traffic control signals. Bringing their bottoms to the couch with a safe landing.
I don’t like this state of affairs, but the mess is actually part of the charm.
There is one exception to this rule, and that is my floors.
Although often (ok, always) covered with toys, unfolded laundry, the occasionally (ok, common) nappy thrown to the door in an attempt to tidy, crayons, paper, balls, drink cups. You name it, my floor sports it like an over-accessorised fashionista.
However, at regular intervals throughout the day, I tend to tidy up all these floor accessories up out of my way and mop like the wind.
I have three kids, all at various stages of toilet training. As such, I am a compulsive floor mopper. I was once a “wait until your foot sticks to the floor” mopper, but not so much anymore.
Right, back to the point.
Today, I had an unexpected visitor..
She will be called The Visitor because were I to reveal her real name, I would have to kill you.
After I myself was subjected to severe torture.
Before The Visitor even entered the front door, her nose was screwed up.
The Two were at the door frame, eagerly anticipating the arrival of fresh meat and a new playmate, and I guess this could be considered possibly confronting.
Next, The Visitor made the observation that The Two were missing their pants and nappies.
Yes. This is a normal state of affairs for a toilet training household.
But, The Visitor pointed out, could I not put some underwear or training pants on them?
I conceded that I could provide The Two with training pants, but that this was not ideal because that would mean more washing.
And the last thing I need is more washing.
The conversation continued. Until I noticed The Visitor had remained standing.
I offered The Visitor a seat.
No thank you, said The Visitor, nose scrunched up further.
I shrugged. This is the kind of behaviour I expect from The Visitor. She is afraid of getting her dress dirty or stained, and as such, refused to sit down in my home.
Now, my couches, although not pristine, are not of the stain inducing filth that would make me fear for the safety of my expensive clothes.
This could be because (a) the couches aren’t dirty and (b) my idea of expensive clothes is the $30 I forked out on a pair of jeans two years ago.
As The Visitor stood, The Two continued to pepper her with assaults.
Of the love variety.
They played ta.
They reached up to her.
They all but danced around in circles, stood on their heads and recited “Twinkle Twinkle Little Star” in Latin for her.
Fraser, sensing that he needed to pull out all the stops, actually raced to the toilet when I enquired as to the state of his bladder.
Once there, he proceeded to wee on the toilet. Obviously in an attempt to show her that if any child in this house was worthy of her love, attention, and god forbid, a cuddle, it would indeed be him.
The Visitor remained unimpressed by the whole performance and continued to stand in a way that allowed nothing but her shoes to touch anything else in my home.
I have decided that there could be one of two reasons: (a) the company of the children and myself is so abhorrent that standing is the easiest way to ensure a particularly brief and painless visit, or; (b) my house is disgustingly filthy and The Visitor was afraid the dirt was catching, or; (c) all of the above.
Perhaps the pile of nappies at the front door, the chalk drawing Roo had graced my wood floor with and the fact that at one point Oscar bent to the ground, picked up a half eaten sandwich – which he had abandoned when The Visitor had arrived – and began anew to devour it, doesn’t exactly inspire confidence that one’s home is clean.
It does not, however, suggest that sitting on my couch, touching my children or even holding them when they are so desperately trying to show you they love you, is going to result in you contracting a hideous third world disease.
Unless that disease is acceptance and love.
Over and out.