My son may have been a janitor in another life. Perhaps a housekeeper, a military man or maybe just a very particular person with OCD. Where ever he came from, I’m not complaining. We came home on Wednesday night after a long day at work (daycare for him) and then grocery shopping. There was dinner to make and laundry to do and just…stuff to take care of like usual. I immediately let the dog out of her crate and she immediately ran to a pile of cat puke that I had NOT seen in the living room and proceeded to eat it. (GAG!) Truman was interested in what she was doing so before he could investigate, I grabbed him and told him to stay away (and that the doggy was disgusting and – GAG.) Shooting the dog evil looks (and still gagging) I let her outside. When I turned around, Truman was gone. I headed to the bathroom in the hall because it is his favorite place to be, and found him pulling one little square of toilet paper off of the roll. He pushed right past me and headed back in to the living room. He went to the general vicinity of where the dog had been licking the floor and began wiping the area with his little toilet paper square. When he felt satisfied that the area was clean, he marched into the kitchen and threw away his little toilet paper square. I took him into the bathroom and washed his hands, thanking him for his effort. I then began laundry. Truman wanted to help. I handed him clothes from the washer, he put them in the dryer. He slammed the door and I turned it on. He followed me into the bedroom and when he saw me collecting towels, he too began collecting towels. He was insistent on putting them into the washer himself, so I lifted him up and he put each hand full of towels into the washer, closed the lid and marched into the dining room, ready to feed the dog. After making twenty five trips from the dog food bin to the food bowl, he came into the kitchen and picked up a paper towel off of the floor, closed the kitchen cupboards, and helped me unload the dishwasher. After dinner, he put his dishes in the sink and before bed he picked up all of his toys.
I am just in awe of his desire and ability to help. He wants to help all of the time, and not just for a minute before resuming play, but for as long as the job takes. He seeks out tasks and has such a confident, official attitude while performing them. He puffs his little chest out, and holds his head high and straight, and marches through the house like a little soldier. When he is finished with something, he will let out a little “pssht…” like he’s both relieved and exhausted. Cutest.Thing.Ever. I just wonder when it will end. Maybe I’ll be that rare blessed Mom that has a sixteen year old who loves keeping his room clean and offers to do dishes every night! Probably not, but I’m going to nurture his love of working as long as I possibly can. Especially around the house, because I feel it is really important that boys (and men) know how to do laundry and dishes and mop floors and clean the mother-loving toilet for God’s sake! Maybe he will find a nice wife that will never make him do any of those things, but more likely, he will find a wife like his Momma who expects a little help around the house from her partner. Or maybe he’ll live alone for a number of years and need to do those things for himself. (Because I will certainly NOT be coming over to clean his apartment and wash his underwear for him!) So, for now it is feeding the dog and picking up clutter, later on it will be mopping floors and making dinner. I hope his enthusiasm holds out! Do your kids like to help? Do your kids have chores?