|Surprise, surprise! An actual photo I took myself, thank you very much!|
I did not post yesterday because I have been under the weather and slept practically the entire day. First on the full sofa, and then scrunched up on the love seat with my iPad and journal, I must have taken three long naps between 11am and 10pm. As I was in and out of sleep, my husband exited to do errands, returned with lunch, did laundry, washed dishes, and cleaned up. When I glanced over his way during the early evening, the side of his face basking in the light of the 60 watt floor lamp bulb, and our orderly apartment surrounding him, I thought, “Wow, I love him.” I am always surprised when Cupid shoots an extra arrow my way, even when I am already in love.
Even though we have monthly deep cleaning service, when my husband cleans, he cleans. He will hand wash each dish, and put them in the drying rack, wipe out the sink, run the garbage disposal and spray down the counter. When he gets around to cleaning the bathroom, he gets on his hands and knees, lungs full of Clorox fumes, and sweating from the heat of the hot water running in the shower. When he is in cleaning mode, he goes all the way.
When we first moved in to our building, I accidentally locked myself out of our apartment. After just stepping into the hall to leave out our unit number hardware for our neighbor, Trevor, to drill into the wall for us, the door shut closed and locked automatically behind me. Because he was wearing his iPod and vacuuming, he didn’t hear me shouting and knocking to open up, and when I gave up yelling for fear of being labelled a crazy tenant, he sensed my banging on the door, removed his headphones, but thought it was Trevor doing work on the wall, so he continued. He moved furniture with one hand, and maneuvered the vacuum with the other, while I resumed banging, yelling and waiting for him to open the door.
I didn’t have my phone on me, and was in crappy house clothes. I wasn’t even wearing shoes, so there was no chance of me walking around the building barefoot and mismatched. Taking a break from shouting and pounding, back against the door, I slid down to the floor, and sat in the corner under the door knob waiting. At that point I must have started meditating to be one with the moment because I was silent, as he turned off the vacuum, removed his headphones, and looked out of the peep hole into the hall for me for a split second but obviously didn’t spot me. He was looking right over me. I kid you not, he moved on to another part of the apartment, when he finally opened the door after several more minutes, finding me, his delirious and dehydrated wife, on the floor.
“Hey, what happened to you?” he asked me, “Were you there the whole time?” “Um, hello? I was banging on the door and shouting! Then I gave up and waited for you to just open the door and look for me.” To that he replied, “Oh! I thought that banging was Trevor working and thought maybe you went down to his and Lorraine’s place when I looked out the peep hole and didn’t see either of you… so I kept cleaning.” Classic.
We often bicker over household chores. I am never as single minded as he is when I clean. He often asks me, “I thought you did the laundry?” and to that I answer, “Um, hello, don’t you see that pile of clean clothes, and the things hanging dry?” He’ll then say, “You washed the clothes, you didn’t do laundry. You need to do it all the way.” Ugh! I always thought he folded and put away all of the clothes right away each time because he liked doing it. It took me a while to realize how deeply he dislikes seeing clean clothes hanging around more than he actually likes putting them away. Clearing clutter is another one. What I see as cleared out (things in printed boxes, displayed colorfully on the dining table) is not clutter clearing to him. “Pack it, cover it, hide it” would be his mantra. Is the way we do or don’t do household cleaning basis for judging our characters? I have my strong points though! I don’t put the good knives in the dishwasher ever! To that he scoffs, “Well they can’t be THAT good if they can’t go in the dishwasher!” Hmph.
In the boxing ring that is our marriage, his cleaning prowess is one where he really knocks me out each time. This is one place where I am happy to play a supporting role and let him shine! It would be mean to take that spotlight away by upstaging him, don’t you think? 😉