I don’t get my nails done. My hair has never been colored. (Heck. I feel on point if I get a trim twice a year.) I have never owned a shirt from J. Crew, Loft is nothing more to me than an upstairs wide-open room, and almost all of my work clothes come from Kohl’s (love that Kohl’s cash!).
My shoes cost about as much as a drive-thru purchase at McDonald’s with the kids, and most of my makeup can be picked up at the drugstore. Once a year, typically around my birthday, I actually splurge and get a pedicure.
So, I really have very little remorse in the fact that I have recently reintroduced the greatest pampering I have ever done for me: I hired someone to clean my house.
You see, I had someone helping me before I went to swing shift, but with more time off (and some family sickness with my cleaner) I thought I could handle it. But once I flipped back to a “normal” shift, I realized just how little time I had.
My weekday nights are a repetitive schedule of dinner, baths and bedtime. I am completely exhausted by the time we finish all of that and have no desire to pick up a toilet brush or scrub a shower.
And I am away from my girls five days a week. The last thing I want to do on my days off is dust furniture. I want to have time to get down on the *(clean) floor and play dolls with them. I want to be able to escape to a park and not feel guilty about the chores left at home. I want to be able to dress up like princesses or go on bike rides with them. I don’t want to be stuck inside vacuuming and Windexing.
Not only that, but having someone come clean our house every other week forces us to pick it up. Don’t get me wrong, I do not do the “clean before someone comes to clean.” Oh no, I let them handle the grit. But we have to prepare for it. There can’t be toys all over the floors, dishes all over the sink and clutter everywhere. It gives Paul and I an extra push to tidy up so our house can be cleaned. Yeah, sometimes it totally stinks doing that at 10 o’clock at night but we “have” to do it — so we actually do.
And it is so worth it. Nothing beats walking in after a long day at work to the smell of a clean house. I can actually see myself in my mirrors, notice my tub is in fact white, and she actually puts the toilet paper on the roll! I can run my fingers along my dressers and not pick up dust. I can spit out my toothpaste in a clean sink, and I can actually see out of my kitchen window.
And the best part about it all is I can spend so much more time with my girls. I can wake up on Saturday not worrying about chores to do but focusing on making it a great day. We can snuggle all morning watching movies or head out for the day on an adventure. After working all week and feeling so distant, I get to give my complete all to my babies.
So, I encourage you, Mamas, if you are overwhelmed with the housework, find someone you trust who wants to make a few extra bucks and let them pamper you in ways you never knew existed. Tell them what you want — what you expect — and feel no guilt.
I know, I too thought that only the rich had a cleaning person. But we are far from rich. This is my spa session, my massage, the reason I shop on the clearance rack and find all the deals.
And Dads, if you haven’t found that perfect gift for next week, find this one. I promise if you come up with someone cleaning your house, you will have more fun between your (clean) sheets.
But, if Dad falls through, then Mama, you do it for you. You are not saying you can’t do it all, you are not failing as a homemaker, you are simply taking control, working smarter — not harder — and totally exceeding as a wife and mother.
You won’t regret it. In fact, my only regret is not starting it back up sooner. Rock those clearance pants and those grown-out roots, Mama. (I mean, let’s be honest, our hair is up in a mom bun most of the time anyhow.) And give yourself some much-needed pampering. I promise, it is so worth it.
You are worth it.
Sarah (Pitson) Shrader was born and raised in Lima. She is a Lima Central Catholic and Tiffin University graduate. Sarah is a full-time working mama who enjoys writing about her somewhat crazy, always adventurous life as a mother. She lives in Bath Township with her husband, Paul, and their daughters, her writing inspirations, Maylie and Reagan.