Saturday, May 12, 2012

The Sweep Stakes Were High at My House


I was laying on the couch watching television in my usual posture. On my side, arm bent to cradle my head in my hand, top leg bent at the knee and held in the crook of my elbow. I was eleven. It was Saturday morning. I don't know what I was watching but I'm sure I wasn't really interested in it either. I was avoiding. The voice called from somewhere in the house, yet again, "Clean your room." I remained silent. My mother appeared. Each day of the week she left a messy house behind, impeccably dressed and coiffed for work,  and came home to the same clutter to sit on the couch and throw her shoes off, unhook her bra and magically remove it, draping it over the couch. Weekends were usually spent escaping the mess.  My mother was always ready to get out of the house and go somewhere rather than deal with it. Then suddenly she would be overcome with a cleaning frenzy. But. As happened every so often without warning my mom was fed up. It was a Capital Letters Cleaning Day. She stood before me in ugly gray stretchy shorts and old t shirt. Her hair haphazardly pushed back with a band.  "Get in there and clean that room!"
I will, I answered flatly, staring at the TV screen and making no move beyond rocking my bent leg a bit. Now! she yelled. I will in a minute, I repeated, for about the fifth time that morning. I was being a brat. My mother swooped on the room picking up handfuls of clutter in a whirlwind. Thrown into sudden and full onset raging menopause by a hysterectomy, she had already in recent weeks, broken  dishes in the sink, shockingly used to F word, and her reaction to my dads Christmas gift of new pots and pans guaranteed something gorgeous under the tree for her the rest of his life.

I should have known better.

My room was a daunting task I wished to avoid. With the exception of my neatly arranged bookshelf, everything was chaos. I don't remember exactly what was in there. I do know I couldn't see the floor. I recall making an Olympic medal worthy jump from the door to my bed at night to avoid injury.

She threatened again. "If you don't clean that room I'm going to throw everything in it away." I'm pretty sure I rolled my eyes. "I'll do it! ...later...."I resumed my concentration on...I don't know...probably Wild Kingdom...it was getting that late in the morning.

A short time later, I heard a lot of noise coming from the back of the house. "Geez, what's she doing now? Cleaning out the closets? It sounded rather violent. Due to recent events,  I decided it was wise to stay out of the way. Besides, if she wore herself out she'd forget about my room. Then a bizarre, long swishing sound on our wooden floors,  followed my clanking and bumping noises, began to descend the hall. "What the heck?" It would stop for a moment and then resume, louder than before.
 And Then...

Suddenly a mountain of clothing and objects came pouring through the door to the living room. MY clothing and My Stuff,  like lava exploding through a crevice and flowing freely over the living room floor. The mountain continued into the middle of the room, being propelled by the huge push broom we used to clear the driveway and front walk. My mother pulled back, gripping tight,  and with a forceful shove cleared the doorway.  She walked to the front door and opened it wide. I stood up from the couch, finally distracted from the TV.  "What are you doing?" I cried out, full of righteous indignation. "You can't do that! I said I would do it!" My mother ignored me. With a mighty heave she pushed the entire contents of my bedroom out the front door across the porch and into the front yard.

I was speechless.

She Was Grand.


The moral of this story being, of course, that I then had to pick up everything and return it to my room neatly. This incident created a lasting impression on me as a child, no doubt, but it has evolved into a fond memory. It created respect and admiration and awe. Even though I've been a mother for a long time, Mothers Day for me is still about my mother.  She died in 2008 but I still feel like the title belongs to her.  I may get some perks on that day but the throne is reserved for My Mom.


I wish all of you moms out there a HAPPY MOTHERS DAY!

Relax. Have Fun! Collect Your Due Regards. Be Grand : )


© 2012 All Rights Reserved by MOTPG

24 comments:

  1. Loved your story - loved how 'grand' your mom was also. I'm sorry she's no longer with you but hope that your girls spoil you rotten by letting you put your feet up for a moment or two. Enjoy your day

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. She was Grand Indeed! I will be doing so regardless of circumstances..barring the house burning down ; )

      Delete
  2. What a great story/memory of a lesson learned and respect earned! Happy Mother's Day!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I would like to say I always kept my room clean after that but...well...it took awhile : )

      Same to you Ms. A!

      Delete
  3. another sign to me that we are connected in some bizzare way... not only the fact that i continually olympic jumped onto my bead or plowed a clear path with my feet but kept my books rather nicely, but one of MY mother's favorite stories is the time my grandmother threw all my aunt's and her things out the window onto THE FRONT LAWN because they were ignoring her requests for it to be cleaned. hope your day was lovely, even if it will always be HER day. you deserve it. in other news: I GOT TO READ A BOOK!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Go Grandma! I do think we were cut from the same cloth, or at least made from a similar recipe. And YAY! for those days we finally get to read a book. Besides Dr. Suess or Hello Moon anyway : )

      Delete
  4. When Sheldon wouldn't pick her crap up off the bathroom floor we instituted clothes jail. We made her buy the back, the whole box. First time it was 25 cents a piece, next time 50 cents, then a dollar. At two dollars, she kept it picked up.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. That's a Great One! Though I do have a child I have confiscated items that were laying around from, and she never even notices they're gone ; )

      Delete
  5. Too funny! I grew up in a similar scenario - out in the world, Mom was organized, put together, a pillar of the community. At home, chaos best described how we lived. Once in a while she snapped, and once she got Dad to snap after a long double shift, and he threw the stuff around the room. If he could have gotten the screen off the window, my sister and I would have found all our clothes in the yard.

    Thanks for sharing a great story.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Isn't it funny? She was such a perfectionist at work. Even funnier was that she would be very offended if anyone criticised her housekeeping : )

      Delete
  6. This is such a creative title! I really like your sense of writing.

    www.modernworld4.blogspot.com

    ReplyDelete
  7. i LOVE this. my mother never did this. she would just give up and clean it herself. although in those days i did not own enough to cover my entire floor. but enough to make a mess for sure. i did come home one time to nothing but a matress, seven sets of clothes hanging in the closet along with seven pairs of underwear and socks lined neatly on my pillow. needless to say after a week i apologized and my stuff was returned. having been thrown into garbage bags and stored in the attic. truly i could have cared less about the clothes it was my books and barbies that i missed.

    i love the story because...i am that mom. trying to escape the mess. coming home to disrobe and then chill. although the t.v. has been replaced with a laptop. and the bra stays on until bed time. i understand the fits of cleaning. one such happened this past weekend. saturday to be exact. i had had enough. i hate the mess. but it becomes overwhelming. and when the post-hysterectomy hormones kick in it is all out crazy momma till the house is clean. but with many more F words. and screaming probably. yeah. most positively.

    what was so funny about your story is that i. did. this. same. thing. saturday. my girls were mortified. but they picked their stuff up. good to know that such an act can indeed turn that little girl into a wonderful smart mother one day.

    are you sure you did not drive past my little yellow house with the mountain of crap under the carport? i do wonder sometimes.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Ok, the Barbies. During another cleaning fit she actually threw away some of my Barbies that were in a bag in the closet. She didn't realize the were in there and felt bad.

      I don't think I've seen yours but we have done a smaller scale version so I wouldn't have to look past the mountain of(Mostly Mids)crap sometimes in my own carport. (It seems like there is always a mountain of crap in my carport, regardless of the kids) But...I admit I can't do it. The SeaMonkey has though ; )

      Delete
  8. LOVE that kind of a mother.

    Now it's all wimps.

    THIS: Classic Mothering.

    ReplyDelete
  9. Your Mom sounds amazing! She knew how to work a room, I'd say! (Particularly a messy room! LOL!)

    ReplyDelete
  10. I love your blog. Please pick up the award I have left for you on my blog. Kat

    http://myviewthroughkateyes.blogspot.com/2012/05/woohoo-another-award-and-another.html

    ReplyDelete
  11. That's my kind of Mama! I've always threatened my daughter but never have actually done it. LOL

    ReplyDelete

Just Humor Me....

Search This Blog