Thursday, October 28, 2010

Wifehood and Weekends

I spent a decent portion of this Monday morning cleaning. I was realizing that Mondays tend to be designated that way for me, and that this is largely because I’ve learned to let things slide over the weekends, when Ben’s off work. After thinking this through some, I thought it was interesting that two different friends mentioned this being a part of their Mondays as well. These days, if you drop in unexpectedly on Sunday afternoon, you’re likely to see a pile of dishes drying in the kitchen, some odds and ends across the kitchen table from various activities, and either some laundry waiting to be folded, or large piles of dirty laundry waiting to be sorted and washed. And these days, I’m okay with that.

Because for me, it’s an accomplishment. My personality always was the “clean first, and then relax and enjoy the cleanness”. And to a certain degree, that’s not a bad thing- generally, even a good outlook. But I’ve learned that while it’s generally good to “work before play”, relationships trump work. Spending time with Ben is far more important than getting everything perfectly clean. He really appreciates it when I can forget the mess and just hang out with him. And we’ve come to have great times together. Everything eventually gets done- shutting my eyes to the mess is only temporary. And the fruits are long-lasting, because Ben is fulfilled in his need for time with me. On a side note, I know guys who are obsessive about having a clean home, and wouldn’t feel very loved or enjoy the time on the weekend so much if the house looked like tornado ally. It’s about what your husband needs.

Children are the same way….they need your time and attention, too. They need to tell you about their idea, and show you their project. They need you to make mud pies with them, or build a blanket fort with them. And they’ll appreciate it far longer than the house will stay clean for. Of course, including them in your daily work is a great way to get things done and hang out together- not to mention, teaching them how to work. Viviana’s still young enough to just be “included” by being worn in a carrier as I clean bathrooms or wash dishes….but I know before long, she’ll be sitting on the counter next to me, helping stir something, or standing on tip-toes to reach the top of the vacuum. I know she’ll spill flour and make messes….but I also know she’ll learn and grow, and most importantly, she’ll feel very special, knowing her mama loves spending time with her.

What kind of ideals have you had to let go of, in order to really be a good wife to your husband?