Husband and I have a love-hate relationship with responsibility. Which is why we have two kids 22 months apart. Same goes for housework.
Every couple weeks we’ll agree that our apartment is some sort of biohazard, and maybe we should clean it before we get scabies or ebola or something. Then we go on a cleaning frenzy. Everything is vacuumed and dusted. Laundry is completed, folded and put away. Dishes are washed, floors are mopped. Toilets are scrubbed.
The apartment stays in this state of sterilization for exactly 3 days. By then some dishes have piled up and there’s something sticky on the floor. The conversation goes as follows:
“We should do the dishes tonight.”
“Didn’t we do dishes, like, 3 days ago?”
“Yeah. I’m tired.”
“Me too. Hey, I’ve got an idea! Lets watch the entire Lord of the Rings trilogy!”
Nine hours later the apartment is still a mess. But we can now speak a smattering of elvish, so we feel accomplished.
We behaved like this even after our first was born. You see, my first child came from the logical-responsible side of my uterus. She never stuck things in her mouth. Seriously. She was all, “Food? That’s not food. That’s a toy. What do you think I am, some sort of idiot?” She learned her letters and numbers by 18 months. I’m pretty sure she’s going to grow up to be some sort of philosopher or maybe champion of the universe.
Apparently she inherited the responsible and intelligent qualities of husband and I. The qualities that allowed us to successfully complete post-college education and also not buy ponies because ponies are expensive and you can’t turn your closet into a stable for the pony because your landlord will possibly find out when the neighbors complain all their oats are missing and then you’ll be evicted. Also, she’s approaching 3 years old and still isn’t potty trained, possibly because she knows she’ll catch scabies or ebola or something from our toilet.
My second child, though also very intelligent, apparently came from the risk-taking-experimental side of my uterus. She always sticks things in her mouth. She is all, “Is that food? It might possibly be food. I better eat it just to be sure. It tastes like paper! Is paper food? If not, it should be!” She gums our ottoman. Today I caught her trying to gum a wall. I’m pretty sure she’s going to grow up to be some kind of analyst (Cancer? Is that a cancer? It might possibly be cancer. I better eat it just to be sure.)
But now our youngest is mobile and putting everything in her mouth. And because letting your child choke on a guitar pick she found on the floor is generally frowned upon by polite society, we are forced to be real adults and do things like vacuum every day.