“It’s all about getting into good habits mum.” Star 1 stood with a large black sack one hand and a duster in the other.
I was suspicious- who are you and what have you done with my son?
Star I had in fact been planning his next day of for some time, lots of pledges to clean his room even redecorate it, most of which had fallen on my deaf ears happy in the knowledge it would never happen.
Yet here he was explaining at great pains the cleaning process- as if I wasn’t skilled enough! Yes the rooms of Star I and II were not that brilliant, clean of course but not so that one would risk consuming the various confectionary that is secreted in hidey-holes, trust me I have thought about it. But I figure at the age of twenty-one and sixteen respectively all I should be doing is pushing the piles of clothes into a bundle with the hoover, the rest is up to them.
By retiring from the more refined areas of household chores, such as litter removal, washing collection and dusting I am in fact doing them a massive favour – how else will they learn to look after themselves? The answer to that it would seem is actually not very well.
To be fair Star I had never been that messy but since lovely Tiny Dancer girlfriend has been on the scene he decided to up his game. So there I stood in the doorway, not daring to tread beyond the sparkly threshold, while he explained the art of t-shirt folding. It was a revelation although I did have to stifle
Sometimes when you look at your children you are immediately hit with the realisation that genetics are so much more that eye and hair colour. There can be no doubt that Star I has his mothers’ shopping gene, all the clothes he was keeping were colour coded in the wardrobe while others had been separated in to clothing bank and for donating to Star II.
“Right Mum”, he handed me a pile of Jack Wills and Super Dry,” these are for him but I’m going to sort his room first, it’s really disgusting I can smell something in there I’m sure.”
I have to say I felt a little guilty, my resolve crumbled rather, had I really been such a bad neglectful mother that my youngest was living in squalor? Judging by what refuse was uncovered then yes it would appear so, I had no idea one teenager could consume so many Swiss rolls!
The gene of mine that Star I clearly does not have is the one that deals with sentimentality, he ruthlessly culled the last remnants of childhood converting Star II’s boudoir into a cool man cave with just a flick of a duster; oh and four black sacks of rubbish.
Then it occurred to me that if Star I is that good at de-cluttering and cleaning he may like to attack the rest of the house, I could hide my really precious things and then let him loose!
Although maybe not, mine is not the only resolve to weaken. After a recent night out The Husband and I returned to find the remains of a Chinese takeaway in its bag waiting patiently for the dustbin, various glasses and bottles dotted about the lounge and the dishwasher, although loaded with dirty crockery, still awaiting a tablet and to be turned on.
Oh well one room at a time then, like he said it’s all about getting into good habits. There’s the first resolution gone.
By Sandra Pagan