Well today has certainly been an interesting one. It started out in the usual way. We all got up, had breakfast and then I started to get stuck into the usual jobs around the house. However, when I ventured into the girls rooms around 8.30am, I was not impressed with what I seen. So I had them also come into their rooms with me and we started a conversation about keeping our rooms clean, pride in are surroundings and looking after our belongings.
The conversation started out in the usual way, me explaining to the girls all about keeping their rooms clean. We talked about what type of house environment they like to live in, how this is achieved and what role they play in this. The girls quickly apologised for allowing their rooms to become so messy and uncared for. We also talked about how quickly their rooms had become a mess and how, after cleaning up, they not only found toys and clothes around the room, but some tissues and other paper rubbish.
I explained to the girls that it was not my job as a mum to clean up after them all the time and that they they also played a big role in keeping our home clean. We talked about all the things I do as the parent who stays home with them every day and how each of us has a responsibility to the others to work together to provide a good home life for our family. The girls recognised that Tata went out to work each week to ensure we had a good life, a roof over our head and food on the table. They realised that Tata does not always like what he has to do in his work, but he still goes to work each day. They also recognised that mum does a lot of different jobs that help everyone else out too, such as vacuum each day, do the washing, cook the meals, organise the learning to be done. Then the girls talked about what they had to do. This involved doing all tasks as requested and keeping their rooms clean.
It was then that JAHG asked if she could really get a sense of what I do each day. She requested that she take over for the rest of the day, all the jobs that I (as Mum) would have to do without any help. She wanted to see how easy it was (or wasn’t) and get a true appreciation of what I do or don’t do! I jumped at the chance to let her tackle a day in my shoes and apart from assisting in any areas that were a high risk for her safety (like putting the meat in the oven for dinner) JAHG was left to her own devises to attend to all the Mum jobs for the day.
I couldn’t resist taking some photos of her along the way and even though she often does many of these activities for me at different times, JAHG found it very overwhelming to have to perform them all in the one day. She commented that she was sick of cleaning up after us all – by lunchtime! and that she did not realise how much work cleaning up after others can be.
But the real winner was when she came to me and told me that my job is not easy and that she will try very hard to ensure she cleans up after herself in future to help me out!