Asking for a friend.
Last night I cried after I ate dinner. I didn’t just cry, I sobbed. I said…
“Oh my gosh, I still haven’t…”
and just broke into tears.
It was about laundry. Laundry was the culprit of the break down of 12.16.18. I had worked up to feeling crappy over the course of the day, but the laundry light bulb made it go over the edge.
I had 1 basket, plus 2 bags of laundry clean and needing to be put away for the boys. It had been morphing into piles for 2 weeks. It started with the basket, moved into one bag (usually reserved for dirty clothes), then into another bag. So the dirty clothes are being piled up in the laundry basket with no bag and there are 3 large clean clothes piles sitting upstairs being pushed out of my mind until I go up there and see them again, and again, and again.
This isn’t REALLY about the laundry. This is about feeling like I am not able to accomplish my roll as a mother. Part of my viewpoint as a provider is of comfort, both physical and emotional. Stepping up to those piles, riffling through them to find a onsie for Decker and a pair of pants for Ender made me feel like a failure. How will these boys know I love them when I don’t take time to put their clothes away? What have I ACTUALLY been doing? Spending time with them instead? What am I? A monster?!
I had been saying out loud - to no one in particular - for days and days “I need to put this laundry away.” It was like I was asking for a friend.
“Anyone know of a good time to put laundry away? Asking for a friend.”
“Hey upstairs, can you help me remember to put this laundry away when I walk downstairs? Just asking for a friend.”
“Oh no, I don’t need help now, I’ll get to it when I remember. I was just asking for a friend.”
WHY. Why wasn’t I asking the right question? Why was I asking questions meekly and mildly? Why does it always seem like a negative thing to say to my partner “I need you to help me put this away”? Why do I feel like even MORE of a failure when I have to create a reminder in my phone to do anything?
Side note: My memory has gone to shit after having children. It’s bad. Especially when I meet new people. If I have met you after having Ender and Decker? Good luck not getting a blank stare and a handshake as though we have never met before. It’s a real problem, especially after moving someplace new. Anyway, back on track…
So the end of this story is what? I put all the laundry away and felt better? Nope. The laundry is still in our room because both of the boys were asleep once folded. I did put Ender’s laundry away and felt better (he’s not as light of a sleeper), but Decker’s is still in a pile (though now neatly folded and organized thanks to Jeff.)
Here’s to little victories. Here’s to asking for help directly - after realizing that it was probably a lot easier than breaking down crying over my dinner - rather than feeling like I’m just going around “Asking for a friend.”
Will I ask for a friend again? Probably, but since writing this down with my shit memory I’ll try to remember to ask for myself first.