Tuesday, April 1, 2014

Cleaning the House After an Illness: Part One

I have been considering writing about this for about the last 2 months.  But, I've been nervous to start.  Mostly, because I am not generally the person who should be giving tips on keeping your house clean (as I go through these posts it will probably become obvious as to why).

The fact is, I have never been much of a housekeeper.  I really wasn't born with that gene (too bad because my mother has a very strong one and I didn't even get half of hers).  The second fact is, that I have a house that requires keeping whether I am a keeper or not.  The third fact is, that when you are sick for a long period of time the idea of cleaning becomes a task of epic proportions.

As many of you know, I was super sick with this pregnancy. For about 8 weeks I was lucky to get out of bed and move to the couch.  Housework was not possible.  My husband and children helped with the basics (dishes and picking up toys).  And, my amazing mother came on some of the weekends.  She would clean up the main living areas for us.  Because of her, it didn't ever reach 'pit' status, but it was close at times.  And some areas, like the toy room for example, really did.

You know what the worst side effect to being sick is? No not the actual sick symptoms those are REALLY the worst, the other stuff.  Time to think.  Time to think about how dirty the house is and how you can't do anything about it.  There's also extra time to read Pinterest and see all the amazing other houses, which just adds to the frustration of the house's state.  There's even the delusion that sets in that the house looked like the Pinterest houses before you got sick, and if you could just get better that you could get it back that way (the nausea meds have strange side effects, lol).

So anyways, that's where I was...1.  The house was a wreck.  2.  I felt like crap.  3.  I was trying to recreate Pinterest.  Thankfully, I do my best thinking when I have a big project to do.

I thought about my plan for a number of days.  I considered searching Pinterest for ideas, but that only brought up pretty houses and cute organizing bins.  I skimmed over the Flylady website, but remembered the 3, 4, 5...how many times IS it that I've tried her plan and failed?  I lost count.  There was also the fact that the only think that made me TRULY sick at that point was the smell of dish soap (not making this up people).  If you know Flylady, the first thing you are supposed to do was clean your sink...and that would make me sick.  So, no.

I realized then and there that I had come up with my OWN PLAN.  Yep, the girl who can't keep her house clean, I needed to come up with a cleaning plan.  Ba ha ha ha...

The problem was, I wasn't delusional at that point. I realized that our family was one disaster away from being on the next episode of Hoarders, or some other embarrassing TV show.  All the thinking made me realize that I really did HAVE to come up with a plan, all joking aside.  

And I did.  

Over the next few days (maybe weeks or months, I haven't decided yet), I will go over what I did to start recovering my house while I recovered from being sick.  Neither recovery was quick, but I have to say that both were successful (though the house is an on going project).  

God Bless,


Phyllis said...

I am looking forward to this!

Anonymous said...

I can't wait to read through this! I too have a very clean and tidy parents.. I on the other hand have the opposite ;-) I am currently in the great purge of 2014 like insane decluttering going on over here.. once I have reduced the amount of stuff I have I hope that will help with the actual cleaning!

Michele said...

Glad you are feeling better, Lisa! Looking forward to reading your posts. I do think the key to decluttering and organizing, one of my passions, is to find what works for you! God bless you in your journey!

Annie Kate said...

I'm so glad you're feeling better! I wish you God's blessings as you tackle this project, because I know from experience that it is a big one.

I was ill for several years, and I'm finally able to do things like windows now. Only one or two a day without risking trouble, but still, it's better than it used to be.

I find so much of the work needs to be done in your head first anyhow, so your planning posts are a great idea.

Two other things that have really helped me: I gave my kids age appropriate chores, and I am on a constant (but not fanatical) dejunking spree. What's not there does not need to be cleaned.

When I was really ill, some ladies from church did the things my family could not manage. Perhaps you could get some outside help for just a day or two.

(hugs) as you tackle this!