Pretty much my worst slob-related-nightmare happened this week. You know the one . . . you are out of town and someone has to get into your house because of an emergency.
The kids and I left Monday morning for Cousin’s Camp, three hours away. Hubby was already at a work-related-retreat and wouldn’t be home until Tuesday evening. I was relaxing after the kids’ bedtime Monday evening when it hit me . . . I didn’t turn off the coffee pot.
My sweet and well-meaning aunt assured me that I probably did turn it off. I was confident that I had not. I remembered turning it on, having my coffee, and then ushering the kiddos out the door.
No Internet access meant that I couldn’t google “How long before a left-on-coffee-pot burns down a house?” I was in a panic, and wished I hadn’t remembered. If I hadn’t remembered, any mess or destruction would have been technically unavoidable, and I could live my life guilt-free. However, knowing that it was on meant that I had to do something about it. Something that involved having someone go into my house . . . . without me there. Without even 5 minutes warning to clean up, and without being able to steer them away from the open master bedroom door, or do a tap dance to distract them if they appeared to notice a pair of dirty undies sitting on the coffee table.
But I couldn’t justify letting my house burn down just for the sake of my pride. And after all, I’ve come a very long way from what they would have seen last year at this point in the summer.
So I did it. I found the number of a neighbor who lives two doors down, who has never been in my home, and I called. I gave her our garage door code and told her where the kitchen was, and then went I on and on about how messy the house was. (Even though for me, it could have been soooo much worse.) She laughed and said “It’s summer! Everyone’s house is messy!” Thankfully she didn’t keep me on the phone so I didn’t have to hear her gasp as she opened the door.
Today, on arriving home, my stomach hurt. I was about to see what she saw. No more convincing myself that maybe it wasn’t that bad. The moment of truth had arrived.
And honestly, it wasn’t that bad. The office has quite a bit of clutter, the living room’s main problem was stacks of clean clothes waiting to be packed, and the kitchen wasn’t pristine by any means, but it wasn’t full-fledged-gross. The dining room table is embarrassingly cluttered.
Talk about a way to make yourself see your home through completely open eyes.
(And just to clarify, we’ve had multiple coffee pots that automatically shut off . . . but I keep breaking the glass pots, and we have to go back to our old faithful.)