came home last Tuesday to find that, on top of cleaning every surface of my
home, you had left fresh cut flowers in both the kitchen and dining room. It's
not at all uncommon for you to do things like this. Sometimes I'll come home to
find a loaf of banana bread sitting on the counter. Or a plate of homemade
cookies. Or just an area you clearly paid extra special attention to cleaning. But
looking at those flowers, I stood back and thought, "This is the most
fulfilling relationship I've ever been in."
my dear, sweet, cleaning lady, you give me more than any relationship before
you ever did.
may think I'm exaggerating, but hear me out. It's not just the thoughtful
trinkets that are in no way a part of your job description (though, those are
certainly appreciated). It's that you come into my home and help in just about
the most incredible way.
clean up after me and my unruly toddler, so that I can focus on other aspects
of our life—like singlehandedly raising that toddler and working to put food on
not that I'm incapable of cleaning, because before you, my home was always
(mostly) in order and (basically) clean. I can mop and dust and vacuum with the best of them. I've
been living on my own since I was 18 years old (so we'll just say a little over
a decade). And I'm fully capable of cleaning up after myself and even after my
the fact that you do it for me? It's like this sense of relief I can't even
it's just me and the kid. And our home is pretty gosh darn small. There are
plenty of people who would probably scoff at my relationship with you and
finger point in such a way as to presume I don't actually need you. But don't
ever listen to them, cleaning lady. Because without you, I'm afraid our whole
world just might fall apart.
see, because I can count on you to keep our home clean, I have an extra two
hours a week to play with my kiddo. Now, two hours might not seem like much to
most people, but when she spends the greater part of her waking hours at
daycare during the week, those extra hours on the weekend are everything. They
mean that instead of sitting her in front of a movie while I embark upon
cleaning our house myself, I can sit and watch that movie with her.
We can live our lives, without me being shadowed by the guilt of an unscrubbed toilet.
the removal of that burden means that I can fully commit my weekends to
adventures with my girl. We can go spend the weekend at a cabin, or road trip
to the fair, or just explore down by the creek in front of our house. We can
live our lives, without me being shadowed by the guilt of an unscrubbed toilet.
that girl of mine? She's kind of a menace. She drops food on the floor and lets
her finger paints spread on the table. She spills milk in the kitchen, and
somehow gets half her bathwater out of the tub. And if I were the one cleaning,
I would probably feel the stress of each and every one of those messes that
much more. Because they would be happening on the floor I just mopped. Or the
table I just scrubbed. Or the kitchen I just de-sanitized. And even though I
absolutely address those messes as they come now, there is just something about
knowing I'm not the one who committed two hours to cleaning the house just days
before that makes them easier to face.
beyond all that, I've come to realize that you do far more when it comes to
cleaning this house than I ever would. Like, did you actually clean out my oven last month? I didn't even realize that
was a thing I was supposed to do. (Clearly, June Cleaver I am not.) And do you really vacuum the AstroTurf on our
deck? I had no idea how dusty that had gotten until I
saw what it looked like clean. I would certainly never have thought to vacuum
it myself. Ain't no mama got time for that.
But you do it. Because you're amazing.
basically, cleaning lady, you complete me. And I cannot thank you enough for
all you do. For the sense of relief I feel when I come home every other Tuesday
and smell the scent of … clean. In fact, to be honest, that check I write you
doesn't seem like nearly enough. Because the freedom and stress relief you
provide me goes above and beyond anything money could ever really match.