So here I am. It’s Friday, and I’m writing my first blog post of the week. In the back of my mind I’m wondering if I’ll be able to upload it in time for prime viewing this evening, or whether it will inevitably trickle over into the overflow carpark of Saturday morning. Not so grand for a self-proclaimed ‘blogger’, hey? (Spoiler: hello from Saturday morning - evidently I need a parking ticket.)
Of course, my mortal enemy has returned for another round of head to head battles: time. I say head to head battles - they’re more like begrudging scuffles whereby I’m inevitably swept into a headlock much like the one my brother would subdue me into whilst practicing his WWE wrestling moves when we were kids (no, I do not wish to relive the choke slam era, thank you).
Between my imitations of a functioning social twenty-something and trying to prepare for two weeks off work, I feel like I’ve blinked and BAM, it’s Friday. The week is finito and the lay ins are imminent, but not one blog post has gone up and my house still looks like the before shot from a particularly harrowing episode of Hoarders.
The house. Our home. The source of my most constant stress.
I’m going to confess to something which you’re not really supposed to admit to online: I’m an untidy person.
There. I said it. I’m untidy. The overflowing washing basket in the corner of my bathroom is a permanent installation, and every time I welcome a visitor into my kitchen, I’m tripping over myself in attempts to explain the mess and how really I’ve had absolutely no time to clean at all and oh God I promise it’s not normally like this. (It absolutely is.)
Firstly, when I mentioned in my last post about adulting that we were all on the stopper train to becoming our parents, I was right. If I announced a friend was coming over without filling in the necessary applications and giving my Mum 2 working days notice ahead of their arrival, she would spiral into a cleaning frenzy reminiscent of Kim and Aggie on steroids. In the unlikely event that my friends were to go snooping in the uppermost corners of my Mum’s bedroom wardrobe, they wouldn’t be finding any dust there. No, the house had to be spotless (which made the BOMB SITE that was my bedroom even more painful for my Ma to live with - sorry Karen).
Somehow, I’m becoming this woman. I’m embarrassed if the house is a mess when our friends make their way through the door, and I panic that when the third fly of the hour soars towards the window in a spitfire attempt at freedom, that my mates think I’m living in some bug-infested shit pit that I can never be arsed to clean.
Which isn’t the case. I feel like I spend far too much of my life cleaning, in fact, but I just don’t have enough time to keep up this showroom ideal that the internet will have us believe.
I also find it deathly, deathly boring. It’s hard for me to motivate myself to finally take the washing off the line when I really feel like the time would be better spend actually relaxing and enjoying my life. When I do veto a 1.5hr bath in favour of deep cleaning the fridge and weeding the garden, the tasks themselves end up taking ages and I resent that I haven’t had any time for some deep and dirty R&R.
From trying to make fresh meals from scratch to endlessly switching in white, fake-tan-free bed sheets, chores.takes.forever. Why is there always so many spare socks in the wash? Why are household items like decent toilet roll and tin foil so expensive? How is it possible to live in every room in a home but always find a bastard cobweb lingering like a pestering old bloke trying to dance with you and your mates in Revs?
Here’s the bottom line: trying to cultivate a spotless home whilst also working full-time, maintaining healthy relationships and having time to poop in peace whilst scrolling through Reddit, is difficult. Nay, IMPOSSIBLE. Especially to untidy people like me.
It doesn’t come naturally to me to pick something up as soon as I put it down. Parcel through the door? Pop it on the stairs. Tired after work? Fuck it, just take your jeans off in the kitchen (and maybe your pants if the lad is around). Stack of unwarranted takeaway menus stuffed through the rusting letterbox? Pop ‘em on the table by the door - someone will put them in the bin eventually.
This is how I live. I’m always thinking of the next thing whilst thinking of the thing I’m already thinking about, and when I’m not, I certainly don’t want to be polishing the ever-ambiguous ‘sides’ with a yellow rag and a can of Pledge. I don’t like cleaning, okay? I do it because I have to, but I don’t fucking like it, and yet I end up feeling colossally guilty when I’m scrolling through the ‘gram and I’m confronted by a stream of meticulously arranged coffee tables and not a long-forgotten Twix wrapper in sight. Urm, hello internet, I’m a blogger now - exactly when will I be redeeming my corresponding blogger home?
And what a ludicrous thing to say, right, when I freely enthuse about my bathroom makeover and the switch up of my living room and dining room? But these are isolated moments of tidiness and order, often backdropped by a disarray that I’ve nudged juuuuuust outside of the frame. Unless I dedicate some time to preparing my house for shooting, it’s the mildly embarrassing mess that it always is. And so I’m here to say the following:
It is hard. The internet is not real life. It’s difficult enough to work a full-time job, fulfil life admin, cook fresh meals, see your loved ones, be kind to yourself and have some kind of hobby or interest without the added stress of maintaining a bloody show home on top of that. Making my bed every morning and arranging the cushions is to me a certified success, but spending an hour dusting all the shelves and arranging the assorted knick-knacks to look just so isn’t something I’m going to cancel plans for. And neither should I. At some point something has to give, and right now, the tidiness is what I’m most willing to sacrifice. Sure, I took all of the dirty washing out of the bin and arranged it into piles, but I’d really rather just go and lie down instead of actually shoving it in the machine.
So to all my fellow untidy humans, I say this: fuck it. We’re only human. We can’t do everything. And if our friends think we’re little piglets who’d rather have a hungover snooze than sort the empty bottles from the night before, then, well, I guess they’re right.
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