I am the worst housewife. I hate sweeping. And folding clothes. And washing dishes. Okay, maybe I’m not the worst because I do accomplish all these tasks while caring for a munchkin. And, yes, I know, most housewives probably don’t love these chores. But while most don’t mind them, I hate those chores. With passion.
I attempted to fold the same load of laundry 5 times yesterday. I quit every time. The pile of unfolded laundry never shrinks in my house. Having a cloth diapered, solid-food eating baby means I have to run at least one load of laundry every day. Interestingly enough, I don’t mind starting loads and I enjoy hanging the laundry on the line outside. It’s just the folding that kills me. And the sweeping. Did I mention that my child now eats solids? That means my floor is permanently coated with yuck, despite sweeping multiple times throughout the day. And there are always bottles and pump pieces that have to be washed by hand (that old grouchy dishwasher just won’t do the job).
But wouldn’t you know, I’ve been blessed with a special sort of man. A wonderful husband. Jesse enjoys mundane housework. When we were dating, he used to drive my crazy because almost immediately after he arrived home on time off, he would start cleaning his kitchen—it didn’t matter if I was over for a visit, he had to clean. While I believe his avid cleaning was partly a nervous coping mechanism, he claims that it helps him relax. His previous roommate and I would joke about what a great househusband Jesse was. While Jesse has toned down the obsessive need to clean, his willingness to help with the tasks that I hate has not dwindled.
Every night after supper, Jesse insists on loading the dishwasher and washing leftover dishes by hand, even though that means he has less time to play with our sweet one. He also cleans up on nights that he has cooked. He has never once complained about it. Any time that I’ve lamented over our dirty floors, Jesse pushes all the furniture out of the way and gives those floors a thorough mopping, even if it’s already late and I know he’d love a shower.
Yesterday, his kindness was no different. As I was sprawled across the bed, he sat on the floor happily folding diapers. And Buggy’s clothes. And MY clothes. While I just sat there. Also, you should know, Jesse has a challenging, time-consuming job. He works a minimum of 11 hours a day (usually more) with troubled boys at a wilderness school. He deals with emotional issues and hauls around trees and wheelbarrows full of rocks on a regular basis. I’m exhausted after a full day of cleaning and caring for an infant. Yet Jesse finds it refreshing to help around the house when he comes home after a stressful day.
He never complains. He likes to help. He takes on Buggy’s bath night when I need a break. He makes the bed on mornings that he is actually home. He offers to go to the grocery store if we need something (another chore I despise, grocery shopping). He does his own laundry (I actually don’t mind folding his clothes because I can do it out of love for him). He is a special sort of man. (oh yeah, and he licks the soap for me!)
I am so appreciative to have a husband who will break (silly) gender norms and help with the housework. Side bar: I should also mention that he has a pink toothbrush when mine is blue. And he chose the pink one. Because he is gender color blind. All he saw was the toothbrush, not the color. I LOVE this man. Back on track…
I love my husband. I appreciate him so much. I feel blessed to have found someone who balances me so well.
Who are you blessed to have in your life? Take a moment and tell that person.