After my kids left for school this morning I was wandering around aimlessly. I went into the bathroom and it was a complete mess. There were wet towels on the floor, hair from the hairbrush everywhere, toothpaste dripping in the sink. I started wiping and picking up and cleaning and I thought, “Really, this is what I’m doing right now?”
It was disgusting and I was disappointed in my kids for leaving it that way. I had this feeling of defeat. I was thinking, “I’ve raised a bunch of animals. There is no hope for them. No one will want to be roommates with them or marry them if they live like this. I have failed”.
Then I got defiant. I’m not going to clean this mess. They will come home from school and be locked in the bathroom cleaning for hours. I’ve had it. There’s a new sheriff in town.
Then about an hour later when I walked by it again, I couldn’t stand it. I had to clean it. I gave in. I am a bigger failure than I thought. I didn’t teach them right and now I can’t even stick by the consequences. I stink as a mom.
And to pile on, I had to remind my son who is 10 to brush his teeth today and he tried to trick me by just using mouthwash. Why???? Why is that easier? How did I raise a kid who doesn’t want to brush his teeth? What is going on here? No girl will ever get near him. He’s doomed to a life of loneliness because his mother failed him and didn’t teach him to brush his teeth.
So, my kids are messy, stinky, ungrateful, unclean, tricky people.
This got me thinking…what is the mark of a good mom? What do I want my kids to do/be/create? Do clean bathrooms really matter or do I just watch too much HGTV?
I have spent this morning thinking of what I will say to them when they return home today after school. I have titled it, “The Bathroom Speech”. And I will give the speech in the bathroom. I will make them sit on the filthy floor filled with wet towels for effect. (Just to prove I’m not too soft.)
Here it is:
This whole bathroom thing got me thinking that we need to talk.
As you can see, this bathroom is a pit. I feel it is indicative of your respect for me, each other, this house and yourselves and I see we have a problem. You MUST clean up after yourselves. Frankly, this (I’ll wave my arm around with a disgusted look on my face) is unacceptable.
If I have not shown you properly how to clean the bathroom, I apologize. (I will be prepared with cleaner and wipes) Here is how you should clean it. (But I won’t actually clean the whole thing because that would be me being soft and them being tricky.) Figure out a way to work together so when you leave for school, it is clean.
I know I tend to focus on things like being a good person, being kind, loving God, doing your best work, being honest, loving each other. And those things are important. They are still important. However, I want to remind you that you still need to do all of those things AND you need to clean the bathroom.
Thank you. I love you. Let’s not let this happen again.©2012 Sue Bidstrup, Great Big Yes™ All Rights Reserved