AND IT AIN'T ME
My mind was on one this morning. Somehow random thoughts were running through my head while I got dressed and it landed on carbon footprinting. It made me think of the footprint I leave on my family. I look across the room at the LIKE A BOSS coffee mug my husband bought me for Christmas. I wash, rinse, repeat my cup so as not to have a bunch of glasses to clean or a petty argument over dishes. It’s not a hard thing to do.
I pick up my mug and head to the kitchen to rinse and make me a fresh cup. As I come down the hall, I look into the living room. On the right end of the coffee table is the 16.9 Pellegrino water bottle my husband drank from, let’s say 2 nights ago, but I’m thinking 3. At the opposite end of the table is my daughter’s Pellegrino water bottle she must have finished last night.
As I look around the kitchen, I see my husbands version of a clean kitchen. The dishes are washed, and everything was put away from dinner last night. In the corner of the kitchen counter, I spy my 2 Pellegrino bottles waiting for me to take them to the recycle, which is overflowing. My ears get a little hot and my jaws a little tight.
I return to my room, cup in hand, only to find my daughters shirt in my work chair. Her sweatshirt discarded on my floor. She tossed them there last night while she lay on the bed with me watching Bones on Amazon Prime.
I know you’re wondering, why the hell is she telling us this? It goes back to the footprint I left on my family. Last month I sat my husband and 11-year-old daughter down and told them to get their shit together, or I’m leaving. Not my marriage, not my family, but I was moving out, and this is their only warning.
Y’all it’s making me crazy. How do you correct your daughter when she’s following her dad’s example? I know you guys are probably having indignant thoughts like, “what about you?” Because I hate the "what about you" argument, I try to catch myself as much as possible. It’s why I reuse the same coffee cup or not hang things on doors (my husband's pet peeve). I tell myself I’m supposed to take care of my family. I try to rationale that I’m the only one pissed off about the mess so I should clean it up.
Nevertheless, my footprint left my husband angry and hurt. My daughter being the duck she is, let it roll off her with barely a register. This has been my life with my husband for over 15 years. On our first date, he cooked for me. His version of cleaning up was to move everything from the couch to the love seat, so I could sit down at the tv tray he set up for me. At the time I was cool with it. It was our first encounter, and I wasn’t expecting to build a relationship off of a meal.
Over the years we’ve talked about getting a housekeeper, but our funds were never quite right to make it consistent. Now, for me, it’s more about principle. My daughter needs to learn to pick up after herself, and part of that comes from learning by example. As I type this, I see the flaw in my thinking.
My mother-in-law made me want to marry her when she came to stay with us because of a hurricane in Galveston. My house was clean, laundry done, and dinner on the stove when I got home from work. My husband inherited his natural love of cooking and entertaining from his parents. Why wasn’t he paying attention when they cleaned?
Y’all, I will be 54 in May, and I don’t want to clean up behind folks, especially ones capable of cleaning up after themselves. Oh, and if you want to know why my jaws were tight. Yes, my husband cooked. Yes, my husband put everything away from last night. Yes, my husband washed the dishes. He didn’t wipe down the counters, and I know those bottles will sit on the living room table until I say something, pick them up myself or he reads this. And before you women start passing judgment you need more back story, so back the f*** up. Just because he pisses me off doesn't mean I don't appreciate him.
APOLOGY: After reading this my husband asked for a retraction. The problem with that is if I retract it, you won’t know he was due an apology. He said both bottles belong to my daughter and the counters were clean when he left the kitchen. Baby, I apologize for accusing you of leaving a mess when you didn’t. 😘