I don’t have an excess of time (like most mothers with young children at home, I guess), but recently I realized I do have some time when I’m not doing much and could be doing more – only it comes in very small snippets, of perhaps five to ten minutes, and the trick is to utilize these short periods of time to do something useful.
Right now, most times I can’t dedicate a whole uninterrupted hour to cleaning, cooking, ironing, whatever. Most likely, ten minutes won’t pass before I have to change a diaper, clean up a mess, attend to a kid who’s simply claiming attention, or sit down to nurse. It slows down everything, but that’s how I work these days, because otherwise I might as well give up and allow the house to sink into mess.
The solution is to complete small tasks (such as wiping the stovetop) in the rare free minutes that come up during the day, and split up the bigger tasks into small parts and do them as well as I can, during that free time that means five minutes here and ten minutes there. Otherwise nothing will ever get done.
I draw some comfort from the words of older and wiser women, who tell me no period of their life was as hectic and time-consuming than when they had little ones at home, none of whom was yet old enough to lend a helping hand or at least take care of themselves some of the time.
So sometimes I feel as though I’m not good enough. And sometimes I feel as though I’m not even remotely adequate. But at least I’m trying, and not letting go of the simple, beautiful and so important things I’m striving to achieve – happy children, a good family life, a reasonably orderly and clean home. Such simple things, yet not attained as easily as it may sound.
I don’t know whether you’ve been in situations when you visit a home that is so orderly and beautiful (even if it’s not large or luxurious), and say to yourself, “oh, I’ll never be able to have a home like that.” It has happened to me. Most of the times these weren’t the homes of young mothers, though. :o) I’m not sure anymore whether it’s possible to attain any level of orderliness at all, when you have toddlers around. Well, at least my furniture isn’t turned upside down. Yet. :o)