That Monday morning was met like every Monday before it: “How is it that I clean my house all week long and wake up on Monday to a complete disaster??”
We all know the answer to that frivolous question: its a house that’s lived in.
When I first got married, housekeeping was fun and exciting. I felt like a “real wife” when I vacuumed and dusted. I remember my husband shaking his head as I vacuumed the rug twice or three times in one day, just because it felt so good to keep a clean home.
Fast-forward 8 years and 2 kids later, and the bloom as long since faded from that rose.
It isn’t very exciting to vacuum twice in a day because my 3 1/2 year old decided it would be cool to crush his cookie into a trillion crumbs and then spread them all over the floor.
But, exciting or not, I daily grab the vacuum (most times multiple times a day), and maintain my home. Because, let’s face it, our kids play better when the home is clean and their toys are organized.
So, as I sorted toys into their appropriate bins, I reminded myself that a messy home is a sign of a home that is lived in and loved in.
Suddenly, my thoughts turned toward my marriage.
“When is the last time I did housekeeping on my marriage?” The thought hit me with a force that demanded attention.
When we first got married, it was fun and romantic to send flirty texts or wait up for my husband to come home late from swing shift. 8 years, 2 kids and countless sleepless nights later I’m lucky if I’ve been able to drag my sorry feet through to 9 P.M. without completely losing my cool.
Please don’t ask me to do more than that. M’kay? Thanks.
Yes, my marriage is very much lived in. And loved in, too. Despite the numerous hardships we’ve faced within our home (language barriers, miscarriages, ailing parents, 2 moves and living in a renovation project) and without our home as we’ve watched our friends and family face unbelievable hardships and trials, we’ve been able to hang on to our love and remember why we chose each other until death do us part.
But just like my home, I must daily walk around and pick up the clutter, throw out the garbage, wipe down the surfaces, and vacuum up the stale crumbs that threaten to attract insects.
Lived in messy is one thing. Dirty and cluttered are entirely another. Lived in messy says, “We do love here”. Dirty and cluttered says, “No one cares about the people who have to live here.”
I am so totally guilty of the latter!
The dirt and clutter that have accumulated in our marriage let me roll my eyes or give annoyed side glances with hardly a prick of my conscience these days.
They allow me to raise my voice in irritation.
They tolerate my all-day bed head and morning breath.
It’s time to grab a shovel and evict the hoarders who reside there so we can enjoy a neat and tidy marriage again. Dontcha think?
Here are questions I am asking myself this summer as I give my marriage a good scrub:
1. What is one thing my husband has repeatedly asked of me that I haven’t yet done?
2. Is there something my husband occasionally comments about that he’d like to do that we haven’t yet done?
3. When is the last time I made my husband’s favorite dinner and desert?
4. Does my husband regularly come home to chaos and commotion?
5. When is the last time we did something together after the kids went to bed?
6. What is one thing I can sacrifice to please my husband and show him that is still my #1 hero?
I already know the answer to some of these questions. I am able to answer a couple with good wifely pride, but most of them I’d rather not answer at all.
How about you? Do you need to do some housekeeping in your marriage? How did you do with these questions? What questions would you add?
Are you looking for some great date night ideas? Look no further!