A rant about cleaning

My parents came to visit for the last few weeks, both to spend time with me and to share their spoons so I could work without having to come take care of the house and cook, too. They did a great job and did a lot of deep cleaning that I’ve been meaning to do but just never had the energy or time. Removing mould off of windowsills, de-icing the freezer, airing out different rooms, etc. Now that the house is in a pretty good state to maintain, I looked up suggestions for ‘cleaning schedules’ which advertised keeping up your house for only 15 min a day.

…and I am flabbergasted by the types of schedules I find. Laundry every morning? Heck no, that only makes sense if you have a tumble dryer to go with it — and how am I supposed to do that before I go to work? And no, I’m not going to clean the baseboards of my house every week. If you think a thorough hoover (vacuum) of the whole house only takes 30 min, you haven’t tried hoovering my house. And I love how one popular cleaning schedule (popularity evidenced by how often it was pinned on Pinterest) claims that this schedule works “even if you work outside the home! Just do your chore at night” and even promises that if you do the chores at night, “your spouse will be home to help you”.

Seriously? Yes, when I come home from work at 7pm exhausted and hungry, the thing I want to do is clean the bathroom. Or hoover the stairs. No way! You think I have enough spoons to do that after a day of working? I’m going to eat whatever I can cobble together, collapse on the couch with F. and something nice to read or some knitting for an hour, and then climb into my bed to do it all over again the next day. I work six days a week and my one day off is spent mostly in bed recovering. I consider it success if I manage to wash the dishes every day or do laundry once every week and a half.

What frustrates me is the self-righteousness apparent in these cleaning schedules. “Your house can be spotless, too!” And, saying that you’re a stay-at-home mom and you don’t get to do cleaning until after 9pm either doesn’t make me feel any better about not having energy to clean up the house, even though I’m child-free (and spouse-less, so who’s going to help clean?).

No, I’m far more inclined to hire a cleaner, once I can afford it.

/rant

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4 thoughts on “A rant about cleaning

  1. Sarah says:

    I don’t find those cleaning schedules realistic either…and I’m a stay-at-home mom! Who has time to wipe down the bathroom counters every morning and sweep up the dining room every evening? Much less vacuuming the stairs regularly! And, when my spouse gets home the last thing he wants to do is fold laundry, etc (though he does help with dishes some nights). I’ve found that doing some things weekly or every two weeks works best for me…and sometimes it’s just whenever I get around to it. We know you don’t live in squalor, so don’t sweat it! Save your spoons and enjoy your free time. And hire a cleaner as soon as you can! ❤

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    • Chera says:

      Thanks, Sarah! I’m a perfectionist so sometimes a lot of clutter feels bad to me… and it especially feels like ‘squalor’ when I haven’t hoovered in a few days because the carpet in my house tracks EVERYTHING, AND it’s super hard to vacuum it. Sigh. But I’m fairly good keep the kitchen tidy and my new housemate moves in soon, so I don’t have to take care of it all myself anymore.

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  2. Felicity says:

    I have looked at those schedules too, and I completely agree. They last thing I want to do when I get home from work is clean the house. Making dinner & doing the dishes every night is time consuming enough.

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  3. Lola says:

    Have you found Unfunk Your Habitat? (and/or the slightly stronger worded name for it). It’s basically the pomodoro technique, but used to focus on cleaning your home/workspace. I find it incredibly helpful and reassuring that there are other people out there completely overwhelmed by cleaning house!

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