Family Habits, why is there a messy one in every bunch?

Do you have someone, residents or visitors, in your house who never put things back how they found them?

A resident or visitor who always makes a big mess and leaves your things out of order everywhere no matter what they do?

A resident or visitor who eats sitting on the couch and leaves half of the feast on the cushions, the coffee table or floor for you to clean and sweep up later?

Well, I have news for you. This is not just a messy person. This is a LAZY person.

When I ran a daycare in my home many moons ago, the children would get up from the meal and clean up whatever the dog didn’t from the floor underneath the lunch table. Then they would clamor to be the first to put their bowls or spoons in the sink. We had rules that made things easier for everyone but those things they just learned from watching me and wanting to “hep” me.  These were preschool children who knew if they made a mess, toys, food or whatever, they could also clean it up and while they weren’t always happy to do so, they did it.

Again, I have news for you. Not every person who sees better and knows better will stop being LAZY even if they are over the age of five.

It is my belief that anyone over the age of five should have manners, consideration and tidiness down to a fine art. Personally, I resent having to clean up behind someone over the age of five.  There is nothing worse than getting your feet wet from over-sprayed pee or for that matter, your underwear which touch the toilet when you sit on it getting drenched from over-sprayed pee. Aim that thing or sit down to pee, I say.

When living alone I never have mess anywhere and only have to give my place (except the weekly toilet cleaning) a good cleaning once a month.  With regular visitors, in my life anyway, this changes drastically to having to clean every single week, sometimes even every few days, which my Fibromyalgia and Polymyalgia Rheumatica hate me for.

So what can we do about this to stop having to clean up after people, big people who should know better?

Sticky notes! Yes, I said, sticky notes. I use them wherever I need something to stay as I left it. Currently my bathroom has two sticky notes. Above the toilet roll it says, “I go over, not under” and on the closed toilet lid it says, “please close me before flushing.”  There is nothing I hate more than trying to extract tissue from a roll that won’t let me because it is stuck under. My hands hate it, too, and punish me with everything that isn’t easy for them. Why people need to change things in “my home” is beyond me.

As for the lid note, well, I read somewhere if you leave your toilet open when you flush the invisible “spray” can reach six feet and yes, you guessed, it my toothbrush is only about four feet from the toilet, maybe five feet but not an inch more. So I need that peace of mind or I will gag when I brush or I will need a new toothbrush every time.

My next sticky note is going to say: NO MORE EATING IN THE LIVING ROOM! NONE! EVER!

Yes, of course, I know there are far bigger issues to worry about in the world but these are things that are an easy and very considerate fix. No rocket science here, just some manners and consideration for others. Life is easy if we get these simple things that are so easy to do and really quite fair since it is about taking care of our own messes.  I mean, unless someone wants to pay me $30 an hour to clean up behind them, then I sure wouldn’t mind so much.

Life can feel rough if the people visiting us don’t or won’t get these simple things that make life not only easier but much nicer. Besides, when in another’s home, aren’t you supposed to do as they wish, not as you wish? Well, that’s what I was raised to believe. More work is the last thing in the world anyone needs, especially with chronic health conditions that cost us pain and stress to clean up.

When I visit people I try to leave the tiniest footprint ever. I clean up behind myself as I go and if I am there overnight, I may sweep the floor(s) or even clean the toilet before I leave just so they don’t have to. I did this recently when visiting relatives who live a ferry away. I left the bathroom sparkling just as it was when I arrived because I didn’t want my hostess to have to clean up after me. I think it’s rude and actually very insulting to assume it’s okay to leave our messes for others to clean up.

And, besides, I like standing in pee said nobody ever.