Are you a mom who cleans up the house every single day even if you know it will be messy again the next
day minute? I hear you, moms! How to stop worrying about cleaning?
My now-toddler baby has woken up. It’s a sign for me that my work for the day begins again.
He is now throwing pillows to the floor, pulling my hair asking for attention (really hurts!), and picking fights with his big sister who’s still asleep. All these before we can get out of bed and say Good Morning!
Tempted to complain, I am instantly reminded to start each day with a grateful heart. I am grateful that our family is healthy, we have a roof on our heads, and food on the table every single meal. All these living on single income household. Yes, there are tremendous and extreme sacrifices on finances. It’s not a fairy tale romantic story, it is not. To be a stay-at-home in a finance-driven society, it is a luxury, some say it has become a privilege.
And that’s alright. There are different perspectives in reality.
But the mess. Urgh, the mess! It just makes me crazy. Haha!
Note to self: Be grateful.
Is motherhood all about cleaning?
Years ago, I did not quite understand the whole thing about motherhood. I was doing the best I can. Feed the kids. Bath the kids. Read to them. Chase them. Keep them safe in spite of climbing everywhere. Yes, I was trying hard on the physical side.
But inside, I was empty.
‘I am doing it all wrong’ I always tell myself.
‘How to stop worrying about cleaning and doing it all right?’
My child was picky on food, I almost have to beg and kneel to swallow her food!
My child does not like baths. I have to drag her cute little butt just to get her on the water. Ironically, when she starts to enjoy, she doesn’t want to get out of the tub either. And we ‘argue’ again. Oh my life!
All these struggles turned upside down when the second child came.
He likes food so much I have keep up with his appetite. It’s amazing!
He likes bath, and wants to bath each time he passes by the bathroom. So please keep his sight out of it! On the record, 5 was the highest number of bath he has taken in a day. Plus a little splash here and there.
But his motor skills is just over the top! One movement of his body, he can fall out of bed. And there’s bruises.
One single swish of his hand, he can stumble all the meals on the table.
He could be a sports athlete. Let’s watch out for that!
You may think I’m too caught up with the struggles. And I was. True.
But I am aware of the joys. Fully aware. So much aware, in fact I would do anything for them in a heartbeat.
No mother would be foolish enough to endure the hardships if she does not love her kids.
We don’t enjoy the mess, we love our kids
We don’t change diapers because we love the smell of poo-poos. It’s because we want them to be clean, and consequently, clean human beings.
We don’t sacrifice our sleep because we are owls. We do because we want them to know that if they’re in pain or having bad dreams, they can rely to us no matter the hours in a day.
We don’t endure the kicks and pulling of hairs because we are masochistic. We do because that’s what they do. They play rough. They explore obsessively. They feel dramatically.
They are growing. They are asking for attention. They are learning what kind of home they are living in, and consequently the world they are surviving/ thriving in.
And they can make all the mess they want!
Someday, my house will be perfectly clean, but not today.
How to stop worrying about cleaning as a mom?
Motherhood is a vocation. Motherhood is raising your children, not just in physical aspects, but more on the spiritual side. Because we are not just human beings, we also spiritual beings. We have souls. How do we nourish that?
1. Teach them to pray instead
No matter how you teach them to clean, kids will be kids. But here’s one thing they are very good at. They are very innocent and very hopeful. So teach them to pray and hope.
Teach them how to make the Sign of the Cross. That’s the easiest prayer in the whole world! Oh wait, there’s a shorter one and the most easiest. And this is ‘Jesus’. Yes, calling on the name of Jesus is a prayer itself.
2. Mess today, adults tomorrow
They may be little and powerless now. But the words you speak to them, the habits you exemplify, and the kind of life you live are all ingrained into the subconscious of your children’s mind and heart. When they grow up and face new difficulties, they will look back on how their role models behaved and solved problems? Who are the role models? The parents!
3. Do not plan your day, plan your life
Each day is overwhelming enough. If you track each hour of the day on what you’re going to accomplish, stop! Think of long term instead? Get a life planner that is very comprehensive yet simple to use.
What do you want to do when the baby turns 4 or 5 and become independent? Do you want to start that business you’ve been thinking of?
What do you want to do when the children start going to school?
It may seem far off now at this stage of your life and your kids’, but it will happen. Things get better. And you will have your hours back.
I beg you to enjoy while they are young. Don’t get too caught up with the poo-poos and terrible twos. Because you will miss all these!
You may be very tired today mama, but tomorrow these little children will be your very best friends who will take care of you.
4. How to stop worrying about cleaning?
Just stop worrying!
‘Pray, hope, and don’t worry’ Padre Pio says.
There’s so much cleaning to do in a single. The hours in a day isn’t just enough.
Wha should we focus on?
Cleaning your mind and your heart.
Clean your mind from anger. Clean your mind from hatred. Clean your mind from trying to be a perfect mom.
Clean your soul by going to the Mass, making the Sacrament of Confessions, and praying the Rosary to the Mother of all mothers.
The greatest Mother that walked on earth
Mother Mary, the greatest Mother of all mothers walked on earth and endured the sorrows and difficulties ever imaginable. She travelled across countries when she was heavily pregnant. She gave birth in a manger, a house of animals! And we all know that she witnessed the death of her Son right before her own eyes, all the gruesome details and spilling of blood. She knows your worries, my child.
Go to your Mother. She is waiting for you!