My floors struck me this morning.
No, I didn’t fall. The concrete didn’t rise or move at all. However the metamorphosis that’s occurred since I’ve been here at the ranch gave me a long pause today.
For most of my adult life my house simply couldn’t be clean enough, pretty enough, stylish enough… with four boys growing up around me… Uh huh. A Psycho-Mom in the making.
In hindsight I see how I drove my sons to the very edge insisting they swept and wiped up after themselves – constantly. Okay not literally – but I now realize I was too close to OCD for comfort.
So, believing this is my home now, that I actually live here happily may be a stretch for my sons.
I emerged from my parents’ dysfunctional household a huge, hot mess. Back in the day I desperately needed acceptance, approval and, dare I say it… recognition. Only perfection was acceptable. Decades later I began to understand that:
- happy, well-adjusted children care about stability and comfort – not sanitation standards, and
- God’s approval beats all others’.
After I arrived here I initially tried to keep the cottage up to my old standard. I made lists of items needing repair, sprucing up and this-just-will-not-do. They’re still on the side of the ‘fridge.
Today I noticed that I’m actually okay with daily visitors tracking assorted patterns on my floors – shoe, boot, various sizes of paws in a mixed media (mud, paint dust, dirt, grime and we-really-don’t-want-to-know). What’s more, the trails can be there for hours until I get around to cleaning – even overnight sometimes.
I’d like to say I never notice them. Those first weeks after arriving here, Cole strolling in directly from the shop (actually checking on me), usually on freshly washed floors made me want to cry – or punch something. But now when I notice traffic residue I typically walk right over it on the way to something I enjoy doing even more than clean floors.
Housework will always be there. It can certainly wait as God and I watch the sunrise over a steaming mug, a covey of quail bobbing across the lot or the sun set after a day-long work party.
Instead of a constant stream of housekeeping I now enjoy the antics of fur kids, friends and extended family. Our combined circumstances often make the hope for my offspring coming to visit seem like a pipe dream. But instead of disappointment, sadness or occasional hopelessness, feeling how it actually is well keeps me in check.
Meanwhile, the pups are a constant source of amusement.
“The Lord answered her, ‘Martha, my beloved Martha. Why are you upset and troubled, pulled away by all these many distractions? Are they really that important?'”
Luke 10:41 The Passion Translation (TPT) *
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