"....... for he knows how we are formed, he remembers that we are dust" Psalm 103:14

Once upon a time I had a house cleaner


I'm not a huge fan of housework, and I'm pretty sure my husband feels much the same. Now don't get me wrong, I love a clean and tidy house, I'd just much rather it somehow got that way by "magic" - or that somebody else did all the work. Like the house cleaner I had once upon a time. A long, long time ago. I loved her. Even though she wasn't actually very good at it............

Long long ago in a clean and tidy galaxy far far away...........
When I was married the first time, young and starting out, both of us working full-time, with our first ever mortgage, we hired a house cleaner. Just once a fortnight, but nevertheless it was a wonderful indulgence that we both agreed would take some of the pressure off. I mean really, it was enough to be working full-time AND adjusting to married life without having to clean the house as well, come on!! But seriously, we could afford it, we wanted it, it seemed like a great idea at the time.

She was a young, international university student. We'd both been there, we knew how little money students often had to survive on. We were happy to help out a struggling student. She was sweet and compliant and, in spite of the language barrier, we thought she understood the task.

But could she actually clean???
The reality was she had NO IDEA how to clean a house properly. We gave her a key and she would come during the day while we were both at work. When we got home we would more often than not find a less-than-satisfactory result. Her idea of cleaning the toilet, for example, was to squirt a puddle of Jif into the bottom and shut the lid. But I was happy to turn a blind eye. I had a cleaner!! I loved that young woman and her little mound of Jif, the only evidence that she'd actually been in the house at all. But she'd definitely been, and therefore the house must be clean. Right?

However, my husband was a little more fussy about how his toilet was cleaned, and he eventually decided we could save ourselves the money and the trouble, and he would take over her fortnightly duties on his day off. Of course it was a much better solution, and this became the status quo for the next little while.

Making my peace with housework
I've never ever had a house cleaner since that time. Not so long after that we started our little family and I was then a stay-at-home mum for many years. Even when I went back to work part-time, I considered cleaning the house to be part of my contribution to the smooth running of the household. Me and house-cleaning made our peace.

Oh to have a cleaner again
When I went back to work full-time a few years ago, when I was on my own again, for a while I started to think about hiring a house cleaner, and about how nice it would be to come home to a cleaned house, that I hadn't had to do myself. But by then my house was just a sweet little place that didn't take long to whip around with the vacuum cleaner. Often I was there on my own, so really there was only my mess to deal with, and it didn't seem worth it to pay someone else to do what would only take me a short while.

More recently, after remarrying and moving in with my new husband, I've hankered after a house cleaner again. Our house is old, and there's just something about old houses that holds the dirt. It was hard to get the old timber floors clean, and the old bathrooms were stained and always looked grubby. But I've never really felt that I could justify the expense.

Maybe I'll learn to love housework
My husband and I both work part-time now, so it's not for lack of time. I just still don't particularly enjoy housework! Our renovation has been a great excuse not to bother too much or too often over the past 18 months or so. There's always dust from various aspects of the renovation, so why would I waste my time? But now that I have a new kitchen, I'm actually enjoying the look and feel of a swish new, clean and tidy kitchen. So who knows, when the rest of the house is finished, I might actually learn to enjoy housework, again!

Dream on
But I don't really think so, and I suspect housework and me will always have a bit of a love/hate relationship. I still wonder if I'll ever have a house cleaner again, but it will probably always just be one of my dreams.................. sigh............

1 comment

  1. Oh how I'd love to have a cleaner! Especially at the moment while I'm pregnant and everything is so much harder... plus we have a fairly big house which takes quite a while to vacuum and mop through! I must confess that I don't do the cleaning very often as a result - it just doesn't seem worth it when my 2 year old comes along and messes it up again later the same day!

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