I’m still here (or, Cohabiting in peace, love, and joy, Part II)

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March 31, 2013 by E.

But just barely.

So, I started my new job this week.  After being funemployed for almost 3 months, I’d forgotten how much work interferes with life.

The job is great, co-workers are awesome, work is interesting, commute is a breeze, paycheck is stupendous, but….our apartment is a wreck.  If y’all haven’t picked up on it, I can be pretty OCD when it comes to every certain things.  (My mother arranges her spice drawer alphabetically and says that ironing is therapeutic, so I come by it honestly.)  Therefore, when I say wreck, it may be a slight exaggeration.  What I mean is that there are a few dirty dishes in the sink, clean laundry in the dryer waiting to be folded, and floors that haven’t been swept or mopped in the past 48 hours.

All in all, not the end of the world.

Obviously, with both A. and I working full time jobs, Part II of this series is a little different than Part I, which I posted way back in February when our main cohabitation concern was fitting all of our clothes into one closet.  Now, we’re fully unpacked and relatively organized, but this whole division of labor concept is brand new to us.

In one short week, here are some things I’ve learned.

  1. Working moms must be superhuman.  A. and I balance going to the gym, going to work, going to the grocery store, cooking dinner, scrubbing dishes, washing clothes, packing our lunches, organizing our work bags, and cleaning a 650 square foot apartment and we’re exhausted.  I cannot imagine throwing a child, or a larger space to clean, into that mix.  However much appreciation or gratitude working moms receive, it could never be enough.  
  2. Procrastination is not just for college.  Adults can should do it too.  Truthfully, I’m not much of a procrastinator.  Even in college, I never had to pull an all-nighter because my 10 page research paper was due at noon the next day and all I’d done was type the title page.  But I also never missed out on a social event to hole up in the library and work on an assignment due 5 days later.  In college I learned to balance, learned  to prioritize, learned to procrastinate when necessary.  So why did I stop doing that?  My shower isn’t going to start spewing noxious fumes if I don’t scrub it right this minute.  It’s okay to leave those dirty pans in the sink for a few days.  Some things have to get done on a nightly basis, and some things don’t.
  3. Squabbling over who does what is never worth it.  Friday night, my hormones got the best of me, and in a fit of PMS-induced pettiness, I accused A. of doing less than his fair share of apartment maintenance.  He was offended by my attack, and rightly so.  Just because he doesn’t do something exactly how I’d do it or when I’d do it doesn’t mean that he’s slacking off.  Once I shut down my inner PMS dragon, I realized I was out of line and apologized, sweetly.
  4. Lower standards are okay.  Please note, this header applies to housecleaning.  It does not apply to men, wine, or dark chocolate – those things should always be worth your time, money, and calories.  But it’s okay to calm down when it comes to making the bed or organizing the laundry or making dinner.

We’ve been doing equal amounts of cleaning and relaxing this weekend, and I made a point of leaving dirty pots soaking in the sink over night.  Currently, our kitchen is is various forms of disarray due to the multiple meals that are being prepped right now.  For Easter dinner tonight, we’ll be enjoying leg of lamb with roasted asparagus and a brie walnut salad.  I’m also making swiss chard stuffed pasta shells to freeze for an easy dinner later this week, and A. is putting together the spice combination for a slow-cooker cornish game hen recipe he wants to try.  Hopefully our upcoming week will be somewhat more relaxing as we each settle in to this new routine.

Happy Easter everyone!

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