One compatibility indicator for a couple or roommates is how you view home and the upkeep of said domicile. While for most of us home is sanctuary, an oasis in the desert of the world, a shelter from the storms outside, we differ greatly in how we treat and maintain it.
For me – home is a place for order. I try to make my home warm, inviting, and beautiful. Except for a few dust-balls (dusting is one of the last chores I’ll do) and the clutter of papers in my office (filing is another of the chores I delay), my home is fairly neat.
For some of my friends and family, home is a place to be messy and let it all hang out. They don’t rush to straighten or clean. Sometimes this attitude is in direct opposition to how they were raised. Being grown to them is not having to clean up after themselves. Neat-nicks and devil-may-cares aren’t compatible.
Other friends keep to the same routines their mothers taught them growing up. One friend, whom I admire, cleans her home top-to-bottom every Saturday. I mean it when I say she cleans her home: she mops, waxes, moves furniture around to sweep, etc. You could eat off her floor.
I have other friends whose kitchens I won’t eat from. They have piles of unwashed dishes in the sink and on the counters and containers of mystery foods in the refrigerator One of them steps in the outside world like the fashion diva she is, everything put together and not a hair out of place, but her home looks like a tornado struck it. I once had a roommate who bought new underwear for her children because she refused to wash – lazy heifer.
I was determined to get one friend on Clean House but they only take people who live in California. Her place is a mess!
I wash clothes once a week and put them all away. (So what? Hey, I’m just saying…) I can’t stand piles of laundry. Piles of anything seem to stare at me, call to me, and demand that I attend to them. (Although I’ve been ignoring the piles of paper in my office, they are almost shouting at me now so I know I’m going to break down and attend to them soon. Since the current project I’m working on is winding down, it presents a good opportunity to clean off the desk and start a new pile of papers with the next project, which is coming, yes it is, any minute now, right?)
While I don’t view home as museum and would never want a home that looked as austere as some of the photos in the high-end decorating magazines (and I will never be mistaken for a feminazi), a bit of order, a smidge of beauty, some regular attending to is how I roll in my home. My home. I try to make it the best it can be…for me. I straighten and fuss everyday because it is mine and its ambiance is important to me.
On the other hand, some of my favorite places to visit are friends homes that are chaotic and overflowing with treasures from their travels – whether to distant lands or local places. Most of the time, they can’t remember what they have and so when I visit and proceed to tidy up a corner or investigate a box, it is an adventure. I admire their ability to live happily with clutter. Just can’t have it in my house except for that one room of his own.
Does the state of your home reflect your state of mind? Can a neat one live happily with a messy one? To be continued…