Life is NOT like a box of chocolates!
Those who read my blog regularly will know that I LOVE cleaning. I am always looking around me to see something that 'needs doing'. As I type this (it's 5.35 am and I just having my first cuppa of the day) I can see that the front windows are a little smeary in one patch, and I want to clean around the 'joints' of the UPVC window frames with one of my cleaning toothbrushes. Now don't get me wrong - our house is not immaculate nor is it sh1t-city, it is normal. I am a little OCD about some things - if I had a carpet downstairs, I would possibly be hoovering those straight lines on it that look like a National Trust property's lawn just before a royal visit.
TV adverts or programmes show houses looking more presentable than show homes, populated with men (6ft 4, short hair, slim and muscular) and women (5ft 6, size 8, perfect hair and make-up).
But life is not a box of chocolates - and folk (I count myself too) need to realise that.
It is not normal to have to be perfectly dressed, immaculate hair and nails, car clean and polished like it's just come from a showroom, kids squeaky clean. That is TV and not real life.
I do like to see houses and gardens 'done' - but it's normal to have some chips out of the paint on a doorframe; a hole in the garden border where a plant didn't make it; and things in your home that you didn't get time to do.
This is usual.
Sadly, so is the berating oneself because you didn't get everything done and perfect.
How many of us apologise when a friend pops over - do excuse the mess! - when in fact the house looks normal. A 'mess' would be the contents of a skip piled on your lawn or a washing machine in your lounge with it's back off being fixed. Things that are normal on a table, or on a sideboard, like kids toys, your knitting, half a cup of tea, a magazine: these things are not 'mess'. But I'm one of the worst people to apologise for nothing, I assure you!
I have opened my fridge to grab milk for a friend's cuppa and apologised for 'the state of' my fridge, when nothing was out of place! (I confess to being fastidious about my fridge! It gets a complete empty-out and thorough clean each week on veg delivery day, and everything 'lives' in the same place.)
So what do we need to remember?
Real life is not perfect and immaculate.
If there is a single sock on the floor in your upstairs hallway, so what? People live here. A newspaper opened out and being read on your coffee table? That's entirely acceptable. Shoes in a pile by the front door? Sensible. As long as the butter is on the top shelf of the fridge at the right, next to the margarine: with all the labels facing front...