Monday, January 21, 2008
The Drudgery Of Housework
Today while toasting my son's waffles I had a thought: I wonder how many times in my 17 years as a mother I have toasted someone's waffles? How many sandwiches have I made? How many eggs have I poached? How many loads of laundry have I done? How many grilled cheese sandwiches have I cooked, how many socks have I matched, how many times have I emptied the dishwasher?
And I realized the answer is THOUSANDS. Thousands and thousands and thousands of times.
My kids, as they get older, are getting better about helping around the house. My daughter will at least start her own laundry. My son will bring his snack dishes up from the TV room and put them in the dishwasher. So there is, finally, a light at the end of the tunnel. But still, there is no escaping the endless drudgery of housework. And when you start nearing the 20-year mark of the voluntary slavery that is parenthood, you begin to understand those women in their 50s who simply stop cooking and refuse to do any more housework. If I never toast another waffle, poach another egg or fold another basket of laundry, I'll die a happy woman.
Still, cooking is far from my most despised chore -- most of the time I quite like it, especially yesterday when I made a carrot cake with cream-cheese icing that would crush the competition in any bake sale, and I didn't even think I liked carrot cake.
To me, the absolute most despised household chore is folding and putting away the laundry. Nothing depresses me more than seeing two huge baskets of unfolded clothes staring back at me malevolently. Even cleaning bathrooms and scrubbing the fridge seem like a breeze by comparison.
But I know some people who love doing laundry, all aspects of it, like the cheerful mother and daughter above. So I am curious to hear what your most hated household chores are. Dusting? Vacuuming? Oven-cleaning? Tell all.