My husband and I have worked out a wonderful system of household chore distribution that works well for us. We each know who is responsible for what, and mostly, it respects our own abilities and interests. Wanna know why I do zero cooking or grocery shopping in our house? Because I am a terrible cook and my husband is actually pretty good at it.
Somehow I ended up with doing the laundry. I certainly haven’t earned the post. In our first years of marriage, I could not tell you how many pairs of my husband’s pants I shrunk. This is particularly horrifying when you realize that my husband is quite the beanpole and basically has to special-order clothes that fit. Eventually I figured out a system, found what worked best, and mostly managed not to require weekly mall runs to replace what I ruined.
Now I’m doing laundry for a family of four, and the work simply doesn’t stop. I am always, constantly, incessantly doing laundry. I finally get all the socks folded only to discover that my eldest is out of pants and so the cycle continues on. It’s not that laundry is so hard. It’s not. I can practically do it with my mind shut off, which is probably why my thoughts tend to wander a bit while I’m tending to the sorting, folding, and hauling of my family’s wardrobe.
Please enjoy the following list of things that I think about while trying to do the laundry:
- How many pairs of sparkly leggings does my kid have? (Spoiler alert: 11) Why does she always complain that she doesn’t have any sparkly leggings to wear? Should I buy her more sparkly leggings? (Spoiler alert: probably)
- Folding socks is the worst job in the history of jobs.
- Somehow, even though we are in the dead of winter, neither child has managed to wear a single sweater. Should I be concerned that they’re not dressing warm enough or just grateful that I don’t have to take the extra steps required to launder knitwear?
- I have done five loads of laundry today. Wouldn’t this be easier if I had a dedicated laundry day and just did as much laundry as I could on that day and then didn’t worry about it the rest of the week? That sounds awesome. I’m going to do that. Friday is laundry day!
- Oh, shoot. All of my dress pants have peanut butter hand prints on them. If I wait for Friday to be laundry day, I will have to resort to wearing pajamas to work. That sounds cozy and also like a great way to get fired. Never mind. Every day is laundry day!
- How does my kid go through so many pairs of socks? Is she secretly an octopus?
- Remember when you swore to yourself that you would make sure that your kids would wear gender-neutral clothes or at least wouldn’t be constantly swathed in pink? Whatever happened to that?
- There is glitter in the lint trap.
- Maybe one day my kids will want to help me with the laundry. It’s not that they don’t want to help now, it’s just that I’m not sure them taking all the underpants out of the basket and wearing them on their heads actually counts as helping.
- Oh wow, a pair of baby socks! How did these get in here? Oh my gosh, they’re so tiny. Remember when she was that tiny? How adorable! Remember how the laundry had to get done three times as much because somehow six pounds of baby manages to leak over at least ten changes of clothes, most them being yours? Yeah, those days were magical. Let’s have another!
- Do you think if the girls happened to have been playing in the dryer for the past half hour it could, like, break the dryer?
- How are there already dirty socks on the kitchen table? How are there socks on the table at all?
- I wonder if I should buy all kids clothing from this point forward in a coordinating color palate. Based on what was in the wash, I’m suspicious that my kids leave the house each day looking like the color wheel exploded on them.
- Someday my kids are not going to let me pick clothes out for them.
- Someday my kids are going to get so big that their pants will no longer fit into the baby nursery dressers they’re still using.
- Someday my kids will do their own laundry. Maybe off at college. I won’t be able to check their pants for holes any more. I wonder if they’ll call me and ask how to get marinara stains out of a shirt?
- Oh, hey kiddos – you want to help me with the laundry? By wearing your dad’s socks on your hands and pretending they’re snakes and then knocking over all the piles of folded, sorted laundry I’ve stacked on the couch? You know what? You go ahead.