Wednesday, November 25, 2009

Thank God for my laundry! ;)

Laundry. Laundry, laundry, laundry, laundry! Sometimes it seems like that’s all I ever do! I look at the pile of dirty clothes on the chair in my room; it seems to be growing quite rapidly. Then my eyes fall on the overflowing suitcase that still has not been unpacked from the last church conference. Didn’t I just do laundry like last week or something? I sigh; it looks like I am going to have to do laundry again this week too. I scoop up as many clothes as I can carry at one time and head to the wash machine. As I work I can’t help but talk to myself...
“Your such a hard worker girl, people should just start calling you Cinderella.” I give myself a little pat on the back as I open the lid of the wash machine and start putting in my clothes. The whole scene is seriously like right out of the Cinderella Fairytale. I even think I hear my evil stepsisters screaming in the background. “CinderMary! Hem my dress, tie my sash!” Oh but wait, I don’t have any stepsisters and I don’t know how to sew. It must be my wonderful big sister reminding me NOT to use half the gallon of detergent and to remember to take the clothes out to dry, so they don’t sit in the wash machine for a week growing mildew. I head back to my room to reload my arms, sighing dramatically. Just how much longer is this princess gonna have to wait for a rich prince to come along and hire her a housekeeper?
As I am complaining my mind suddenly goes back to a conversation that took place quite a few years ago…
“It’s recess time!” Says our teacher Mrs. Martina to my fourth grade class at Black Mountain Elementary School in Cave Creek Arizona. “Everyone line up at the door.” As I stand in line waiting, one of the kids turn to me,
“You must really like that skirt Mary, you wear it EVERY day. I look down at my worn, cotton, navy blue skirt.
“Uh, yeah,” I say, “It’s my favorite!”
“Oh, do you have a lot of them?” asks another kid?
“Umm,” I hesitate not sure what to say. The reason I wear the same skirt everyday is not because it is my favorite, but because it is the only play skirt I have. My black skirt is reserved for church on Sundays. I hesitate, then, instead of telling them the truth, I lie.
“Oh yeah,” I say, “I have a lot of skirts just like this one hanging up in my closet!”
My cheeks burn because I hate lying, but I am too embarrassed to tell the truth. The truth is that every night after I take a shower, put on my pajamas and go to bed, my mom is up late doing laundry. It’s not because she wants to keep up on the laundry, but because if she doesn’t, my siblings and I won’t have any clean clothes to wear to school the next day.
Sometimes my shoes would get so worn the sole would be flopping off of the shoe. Instead of throwing them away my mom would hot glue the sole back on, because new shoes just weren’t in our budget. I can still feel the excitement I felt one day as I was given a new skirt to wear. It was one of the ugliest skirts I have ever seen. It was an old blue granny skirt with little green whales on each side of the pockets. The pockets on the skirt were so huge you could fit a sack of potatoes on each side. Yet I loved that skirt, not because I thought it was cute, but because now I had TWO play skirts. I remember packing for a 3-day youth conference and hoping that no one would notice that I would be wearing the same thing twice.
I think about my closet now. It is filled with an abundance of beautiful clothes. Clothes that I like and are my own style. Sometimes I wish that these youth conferences were longer because there just isn’t enough services to show-off all my outfits. Hanging on my bedroom door is a shoe rack filled with shoes. Instead of one pair of play shoes and one pair of church shoes, I have the privilege of being able to choose from a variety of shoes whatever I think matches best. Above all this, I even get to accessorize, which I absolutely love to do! ;) I have hooks on the wall filled with cute purses and a drawer full of headbands, flowers, ribbons and clips that add just the right touch to my outfits.
One Sunday night some of the girls from church and I are in the ladies bathroom excitedly discussing the next youth rally our church is hosting. Of course we are discussing the usual stuff, what guys we hope will show up and all that fun stuff when all of the sudden I gasp.
“Oh no!” I say placing my hand on my heart. “Oh no, oh no!”
“What’s wrong?” the other girls ask worriedly. I sigh,
“What do you guys think I should wear to the youth rally? “ I ask dramatically. Everyone immediately busts up laughing at my crazy antics. It may seem silly, but inside I really am wondering, because I really do have so many beautiful clothes to choose from.
I look down at all the clothes I am piling into the wash machine and I feel a bit shameful for complaining about washing them. I know by the world’s standards I may not be rich, but I am extremely blessed! I am learning to have an attitude of gratitude. Yes, there are a lot of people that don’t have to do their own laundry and too often it is because they don’t even have any laundry to wash.
As I get back to my laundry I think I can hear the birds singing and I hum a little tune as I work. Ok, ok, lets be honest, THIS IS CinderMARY we’re talking about. ;) It’s more like I hear the music blaring from my playlist and I dance a jig as I sing off key at the top of my lungs, “I feel the joy of the Lord falling fresh on me!” As I dance, I readjust my tiara, pour in the soap, put down the lid and listen as the wash cycle begins. It may seem weird but I smile as I think about washing clothes again next week. This princess thanks God for laundry!