Despite going very few places these days, the laundry that sits in a basket in my children’s room never seems to get down to zero. Or when it does, it is such a rare occurrence, that there is little to celebrate the occasion. Every evening, despite my deep desire to just forget it and fall asleep, the dishes get stacked in the dishwasher, the cat water is replaced, and I attempt to sweep up the dust of the day.
If I didn’t want to laugh/cry through my screen, I could write a book on the massive amount of labor and chores that consume 24 hours with two kids, two cats, and one adult. But in the interest of ease, I’ll spare you. Perhaps the main issue is the dilemma that we all face: It’s hard to work/live/play/sleep in a unkept place. At times, my entire mood depends on the last time I’ve vacuumed the hallway.
Recently, while discussing this with my therapist, she suggested I look at my allocation of chores for the kids. Shortly after, I randomly read a blog post where a parent had their children do their own laundry. Why didn’t I think of that?
While the kids do have small easy chores that they should do everyday (and it has been the same for some time), I was nervous to give them more. More to figure out, more to get flustered with, more to remind them to do. Just more. In reality, not doing so has only meant that I do more (which is my role here, I know). Even with the ways I have been able to keep partial domestic help, more lately, has been too much more.
My fine line answer has been to let a good chunk of the more, go. I am resolved in that. These are the times, I say. But as a slight experiment and guide, for kiddos my age, or slightly above (maybe even when you were a kid and Not in a pandemic), what chores should be happening?
Outside of this conversation, I do love the idea of giving children autonomy over their own bedrooms these days.