Elbow grease

You know, I never remember that the most therapeutic thing I can do, anytime there’s some sort of psychological/philosophical/existential crisis going on, is work. Labor type, work up a sweat, get my back into it WORK.  It has to be a certain type, too. Something that requires a little bit of thought and isn’t too repetitive. Mowing won’t cut it (haw! see what I did there?). Scrubbing a bathroom works great. Weeding, prepping a garden bed, building a brick wall…those things are what’s needed.

So, I cleaned the boys bathroom. It was disgusting. I mean REALLY disgusting. It hadn’t been cleaned for months, and with 4 young men and all their engine grease and sweat and schmutz and things I don’t even want to consider…well.  I probably should be ashamed for having apparently so little regard for the state of the house to let it get that bad, but it’s not like there was piles of poo or that sort of thing…it was just general schmutz.

But, not anymore! I threw my back into it, and worked up a 2 hour sweat scrubbing and toothbrushing the grout and wiping the proceline  porcaline  porcelain bits and then bleaching the whole thing so now it fairly sparkles! Also threw away several thousand hundred  empty shampoo bottles, shaving cream cans, things apparently only a female is allowed to put into a trash can because I am the ONLY one who does is…Ok Terry does it too but he had to be trained and only a woman can train a man to do it and it can’t be his mother.

And I feel so much better. My head is in a much happier place and there is actually some optimism brewing! How about that!

So, next time you see me getting whiny and precious about life, tell me to go clean something, or pull a weed.



About rootietoot

I do what I can.
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11 Responses to Elbow grease

  1. Michelle says:

    Argh, how well I know the existential crisis. I was scrubbing and sniveling this AM. I have the “blessing” of having a very handsome and well liked husband. I am not a “handsome” gal and my personality is…complicated. I get comments EVERY DAY from people and guests about how LUCKY I am to have “caught” him, how on EARTH did I get to marry someone like that, blah blah ad nausea. Coupled with that is an ongoing drama in the park about a couple here: the woman is young and thin, but completely useless, the husband a complete dirt-bag criminal. Much hand wringing in the park about on “How could a woman like that be with a man like THAT?” although she is equally foolish and dirty-baggy. Even the hub has gone on about it. No one sees the parallel but me. Apparently in this world a woman only needs to be young and thin in order to have any sort of value. I of COURSE bring nothing to our marriage in the eyes of the world, being aging and fat. Character? Intelligence? Pfft. When he brought it up for a third time this AM I fliiiiped out. Wigged out! Lost my mind! So I hit the sink and scrubbed it raw. My kitchen looks great.

    • rootietoot says:

      ((hug)) I hear you. Not only does it make us feel bad, it’s insulting to the men too, as if they only see the surface and can’t make a decision based on inner qualities.

  2. pheenobarbidoll says:

    I can only do the chores that don’t require thought when I’m stressed. Like vacuuming. But, when I hit a very low point I don’t even care to do that much. You can tell my mental state by my house too, but when I’m very depressed the house is filthy, which serves to contribute to the overall yuckness I’m feeling, which makes it that much harder to clean it. When my house is shiny sparkling clean, I’m in a very good mood.

    My husband has not yet figured this out. He’ll come home and grouse that there’s no clean bowls (because I don’t give a shit. And refuse to cook so it’s fend for yourself night) and it will be ON because I’m already in a bad mood and he foolishly opened his mouth about dishes. (dishes!? The world is going to hell and you’re upset about DISHES!!!! Like it’s my JOB or something jerkface?!? Yeah. It’s not pretty. You’d think he’d learn by now.)

    Fortunately, I have the emotional variation of sand mostly. Takes a lot to make me giddily happy and takes even more to depress me. And unless you know the exact right buttons to push ( husband. I’m looking at you), it’s very hard to make me really angry. I take after my dad in this aspect. He can shake off stress and keep going. My mom can to a point, but then it manifests in high blood pressure and blood sugar issues. She holds grudges. I get that from her. My mother in law from hell did not know what she was getting into by trying to start drama with a Southern woman. She only thinks she knows how to carry a grudge.

    I haven’t tried angry cleaning. Probably best to avoid that since I break enough dishes at the best of times or manage to cut the fire out of myself shoving cans into the trashcan with a normal amount of force behind it. Rage cleaning would leave me dish less and in the ER.

    • rootietoot says:

      I have been depressed all Summer, and the house shows it. My attitude has been “who cares, why bother” and honestly it usually feels like I *am* the only one who cares. Maybe I am finally getting out of it, because I am starting to care. I save angry work for outside- especially wisteria and azaleas. There’s too much delicate stuff inside. Chainsaws and shovels.

  3. pheenobarbidoll says:

    Too damn hot to do work outside. I’d end up angrier and hot. Not a good combo either. Plus, this is a rent house and I’m not big on doing yard work for a house I don’t own. And, because of the drought, it’s just dirt now anyway. I DID pull weeds in the front last week (it’s a rock yard. Low maintenance my butt) but stopped halfway through because most of it was stickers and those godawful goat head thorns and it hurt. Paid a kid down the street 10 bucks to do the rest for me. Generally, my best recipe for feeling crummy is a good book. Just curl up on the couch and ignore the world while I read. Maybe you can substitute a book for a drink while you’re trying to stop having a drink in the evenings? And I don’t mean some fancy pants non fiction stuff, I mean junk. Trashy as hell romance novels with brooding heros in kilts type junk. Or run for your life and hack the heads off zombies. Hacking zombie heads solves all the problems. Yanno, the guilty pleasure books people don’t admit they read. Bonus, if you have a kindle you don’t have to feel shame at the check out lol. I read The Hunger Games recently, only because I could get it on Kindle. Not too shabby for mindless entertainment value.

    • rootietoot says:

      It’s actually been pretty workable here, lately- low 80’s and (for us) low humidity. And YES to the trash reading. I love my kindle because I can read it without reservation. When I am really low it tends to be serial killers and Stephen King. That way there’s someone there who is worse off than I am.

  4. pheenobarbidoll says:

    “. I get comments EVERY DAY from people and guests about how LUCKY I am to have “caught” him, how on EARTH did I get to marry someone like that, blah blah ad nausea.”

    This is some grade A bullshit right here. I don’t know that I could resist calling them out in an embarrassing manner.
    What? Are you saying I’m UGLY or something? You mean how could an ugly old hag like me catch a good looking man?


    I sacrificed kittens under a full moon, obviously.

    Catch him? I drugged him. Shhh, don’t tell anyone.

    or you could go vulgar

    I can suck a golfball through 5 miles of garden hose.

  5. pheenobarbidoll says:

    It is an absolute MUST that you say the last 3 as deadpan serious as possible.

    The kitten one, make sure you’re close enough to make it uncomfortable for them. And then smile.

    Licking of lips, with a daydreamy porn look on your face would go with the suck the golfball line.

    Hand them a drink or a snack immediately after the I drugged him line. Watch them closely as they begin to take a sip or bite.

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