Frankly, I don’t know how my mother did it. Working 60 hours a week, coming home to bratty kids, cooking a delicious meal and then ending the night with a spotless house. Her ability to be a superhero is honestly a direct attack on my character now. Do you know how hard it is to convince a mother that can do everything, that taking care of myself, my dog, my job, and my tiny apartment is difficult? It’s a battle I was never supposed to win.
Which is why I have come up with a simple solution: more hosting with new friends. It’s not like I don’t have friends, but none of my good friends are successful enough to truly make me feel bad about myself. I have zero pressure of motivation to be better. Because let’s face it, of all the people that could make me feel reassess my decision to skip vacuuming, it is not going to be my best friend sprawled out sans pants eating ice cream out of the carton.
I need new friends. People to impress. People that I would feel the need to hide my shame and filth from. People that would come over in an outfit that takes effort and that would notice if there was a spot I had missed while dusting.
The problem is I’ve gotten too comfortable. We’ve all gotten too comfortable. Once we collectively made the decision to raise each other up instead of tearing each other down, all of our personal accountability went to shit. We all need some cattiness, or at least the threat of cattiness, to keep each other in check.
Don’t get me wrong, it’s not like I live in a trash heap. There are no rings in my toilet bowl or clothes on my floor. But I don’t have the Pinterest-perfect set-up that I aspire to adorn. I make my bed most mornings, but even then, it’s sloppily thrown together while I’m trying to beat the dreaded back to school traffic. And when I get home, I have been known to leave a dish or two in the sink for the morning.
I wish I could say that my boyfriend coming over was enough for me to go on a cleaning bender, but it’s not. He doesn’t notice a difference between tidy and spotless, so it’s hard to bring myself to care. According to him, the only criteria for a house being a home is that his favorite shitty beer stocked in fridge.
I miss the rush of anxiety cleaning for strangers. I yearn for the feeling judgement because I noticed that something is the slightest bit out of place. They say that sex with the person you love is the greatest feeling in the world, but to me even that comes second to pride felt when someone new enters your home and gushes over how nice it is.
How there is not an app for that is beyond me. Of course, if I do anything for my own satisfaction or sense of achievement, well, I don’t give a fuck. I am perfectly content swimming in my own filth, hiding from the world under a protective layer of wrappers and dirty dishes. The only true things that can motivate the modern-day aspiring homemaker is the attention, validation, and chase of judgement.
So please, if you’re in the San Diego area, and you don’t, like, suck, come to my house to shame me into cleaning. Raise your eyebrows at a piece of outdated décor. When I give you your wine glass, inspect it for water spots with a wrinkled nose. Help me be a better person by being a bitch.