Oh, not the divorce. That I can totally do. The title refers to the house being clean for guests. Let me explain.
When my husband asked for the divorce, we got off on the topic of guests. See, I had always assumed that if we had a guest in the house, regardless of who invited them, they would be “our” guests because it was “our” house. But my husband corrected me and told me that if I invited someone it was “my” guest and that if he invited someone it was “his” guest. That’s why, he informed me, he didn’t feel like he had to help me clean the house before “my” guests would come.
So, with his mother coming I figured it was “his” guest, seeing as how she wishes I would drop off the face of the Earth. Because it was “his” guest, he should have to clean the house and make it presentable for his mother.
Oh, sure, like that happened.
She’ll be here in four short hours. The house is still a mess, the dishes aren’t done, the floor isn’t vacuumed, his combat boots are in the middle of the living room floor and his desk looks like a bomb went off on it. There are fur balls in the hallway (we have a dog that copiously sheds all year), there are recycle bins in the kitchen, trash that needs to go out, and an empty case of beer on the floor next to his desk (let me just say that I don’t drink beer). And I’ll clean it all up.
Why? Because I just can’t have her show up with the house looking like this.
Part of it is pride. I’ve never been what you would call a great housekeeper. I’ve never truly been house proud (mostly because the houses we have always lived in have been temporary and not mine). But a clean house for a guest tells them that you respect them and couldn’t wait for them to get there. That you were going to put your best foot forward for them because you enjoy their company.
Now, I don’t enjoy my mother-in-law’s company, but it’s still pride that has me knowing that when I finish this post I’ll be cleaning the house. I clean it for her because I don’t want to hear her complain about what a horrible housewife I am. I can control what she says on that front, even if I can’t control anything else she says or does.
So here I sit at 5:59 a.m., way earlier than I like to get up, because I know that I have some work to do before she gets here and makes my life a living hell for the next 5 days. Because I want to keep the stress down as much as possible while she is here.
But, believe me when I say, that I can’t wait to be the one doing the forgetting where she is concerned.