Little Annoyances. Maybe some not so little.

I was paging back through my posts from last January.  Today is the 25th of Jan 2010.  I didn’t write on Jan 25, 2009 last year.  The book ends on either side was an OCD post about children’s messy rooms and losing my mind.  um, memory.  Today I feel like I’m losing my mind.

I told someone recently that I want to let go of a few things in the house and not be all OCD.  I used the kitchen sink as an example.  Seeing dirty dishes, clean to be put away, or recycling – it makes me twitch. 

Yeah……  on second thought, that isn’t going to be the one. 

I’m really doing my best to let A have her room her way.  I’m really trying people, I really am.  She’s back to sleeping in her “tent” on the floor.  Her perfectly good twin bed is piled with clothes (clean and dirty), books and random papers.  It looks like her closet threw up all over the floor.  I am not kidding – the door is open and toys are spilling out onto the carpet.  She constantly loses one of a pair, the connector of whatever toys, 2 pieces of a puzzle.  She sometimes gets really upset about it, to which I respond if you put that thing away like I asked it wouldn’t be lost right now.  Oh – and the multiple glasses of water – OMG the water!  (by the way – I am aware I wrote about this before, it persists)

Part of my current anguish stems from New Year’s.  I went in her room about 9am.  Norman came by around 11:30 to ask what I was doing and now the whole agenda of the day had changed.  And you know what, I was barely through half of the cleaning I wanted to do!  I was able to trash a bunch of stuff that just needed to go.  A joined me at some point and was doing a good job of putting things where I directed her.  We were also able to select a nice sized bag of toys for charity.  She did poke around inquiring about missing stuff.  The only thing I dug out of the trash were a bazillion folded up mini post-it notes.  She went into explaining their purpose in her round-about 6 2/3 year old way.  Cannot tell you what it was, I stopped listening at some point.

I never got back into the room that day to complete my task.

Every time I enter the room now I resist with all my might to start putting things away.  Lost library books should not be my problem to fix.  Misplaced reading lights are not my responsibility.  Scratched CDs floating about the room is not my deal when they start skipping.  Water spills on dolls, blankets and paper with marker drawings are hers to clean up.

How am I doing?  Is this step big enough?  How long until someone is knocking at my door telling me it’s time to let go of another OCD “problem”?


p.s. – if anyone out there knows how to get an original drawing done with a Sharpie off of a wood dresser, please let me know.

4 thoughts on “Little Annoyances. Maybe some not so little.

  1. My dear friend I feel your pain! I have two boys who think that it is ok to leave dirty dishes, clean/dirty clothes and heaven help the toys, books and just general crap all over. Luckily one is out on his own and has to deal with it himself but it is almost a moment of spastic twinging on my part when I see his apartment. Additionally I am also trying to not be OCD about the house ect however I have to balance my sanity and the cleanliness of the house. Here is an option that seems to work with my youngest… he can leave it messy all week but one day a week it hast to meet ‘mom standards’ and be vacummed. In that I don’t nag about how his room looks the other 6 days and he has to find his own stuff. He does have to pull his bed covers up during the week is the make sure clothes left in the bathroom are in the laundry basket. Otherwise he is on his own for cleaning his room. The only thing I get to nag about during the week are showering, clean hair, teeth and getting to bed and up on time. Remember that there are give and take in all relationships and as mom you have the right to set boundries and not feel bad or guilty about it. Face it …it’s your house and she needs to respect your wishes as you respect hers. 😉 Hang in there it does get better..

  2. Interesting. We have similar rooms in my house. I do make them do a thorough cleaning about once a month and have learned that while it will take over 8 hours for them to clean (on their own), it will take less than 8 minutes to trash them again once I’ve finished the vacuuming. At least I manage to vacuum once in a while. And change the sheets weekly. But that’s about all I’ve accomplished. I have noticed that as they get older, it’s getting less messy. My 10-year-old’s room is only about half as messy as the 6.5-year-old’s room. I’m figuring at this rate, the rooms will be immaculate when the kid is 18. And away at college.

    For the Sharpie on the dresser, maybe try that Magic Eraser from Mr. Clean. Not sure if it’s safe for wood, but I have seen it perform some miracles. Otherwise, it’s time to paint the whole dresser. Or strip it and re-varnish!

  3. Ahhh, Jen , it is a fine balance to let the kids be and guide them into wht they need to be living in our homes. But rules and boundaries exist everywhere and a responsibility chart helps to keep thing ordering to an extend. Little things, like putting clothes away on laundry day, cleaning off the dresser on sSaturdays, picking up toys at the end of the day, can all be accomplichments where the kids earn a quarter or two for each. Once they have some dough, they can go to the dollar store for more junk they earn. But I would say every other month a good re-organization of clothes, toys, goodies, etc is needed. They still need guidance in this area. I have a neat kid and a pack rat. The neat one can organize her own stuff, the pack rat either can’t or can’t be bothered to. Funny….

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