Thursday, June 4, 2020

Resistance To Change

"If you don't like something, change it. If you can't change it, change your attitude."
 -Maya Angelou

Welcome to the hardest working room in my house. 

Not only does the laundry room do battle against a dozen loads of laundry a week, but this is the main thoroughfare to the garage, and the pets' dining area. 

Well, I should say that my two previous dogs took all their meals here but not Gracie. She is a wild woman who must dine outside. It's not so much her table manners that cause the problem. She literally eats every bite of her food without so much as dropping a crumb because, you know, crumbs are delicious. 

And though she drinks like a thirsty camel, she doesn't splash around too badly. No, the problem comes when my beautifully feathered Irish Setter lifts her head from the drinking bowl, and water streams in cascades and rivulets from her lips to her chest and on a good day, all the way down to her belly. She's earned the nickname, Niagara Falls, and it suits her well.

But wait. Back to my point.

The thing about this room is that despite the constant wear and tear, I've done very little in the way of updates or some much needed renovations.

Oh, the walls have been painted a few times. They are still my white of choice, Behr's Bleached Linen. 

We've run through a few washers and driers over the years. These seemingly small Bosch units run plenty big super-sized loads even though the machines maintain sleeker profiles than the typical American brands. Love. 

And maybe ten years ago, I hung my second-born's monochrome circle art and three wood shelves along the main wall, which definitely bumped up the style factor.
This $20 bought me a whole lot of happiness.

I also sprung for a bitty little mirror with a round wooden peg which I inexplicably love. My purse hangs there and every time I pick it up or drop it off, that mirror sparks a new round of joy in my heart.
See the item on the white board that says "laundry room floor"? Yeah. That's been there for years. 

But otherwise, the laundry room carries on much the same as it always has. And it has become somewhat of a battered affair.

Natural birch peg railings came from Crate and Barrel back in the day. I think I may have bought them before we moved from Chicago.

Hanging baskets were a catalog purchase from the babyhood days. The larger one, which now holds my daughters' slip ons, used to house a stash of my favorite catalogs back in the day. Oh, the memories of the hours I used to spend quietly window shopping through catalogs while my babies took their afternoon naps. What an extravagant use of my precious time.

And that white board is a relic of the homeschooling era, when it was taken down off the wall and carted around the house for endless purposes, most of which had nothing to do with me. Now it mostly stays fastened to the wall, covered in lists of appointments, project notes, and the ubiquitous to-dos.
The dish to the right of the faucet is the cats' watering hole - usually there are a couple more dishes on the counter holding the dregs of one of their wet food feasts. However, Gracie makes a daily habit of jumping up and grabbing the dishes, carrying them off in her teeth to her spot on the couch where she carefully licks out every molecule of cat food. It's cute but very annoying. 

I gotta be honest though - this room has been worn to a frazzle. The sink bears the scars of three decades of painting projects cleaned up here, the old Formica counter tops belong in a mid-century museum, and the floors - well, they have died an undignified death. 

It's time - no, it's a decade beyond time - for me to get some work done here. The money has been set aside for a reasonable renovation and I've got a pretty good idea of what I want.

So why don't I just pull the trigger and give this room some love?

I can't say for sure. 

Maybe it's these crazy, uncertain times. 
Maybe I have attachment issues. 
Maybe I secretly love that almond Formica. 

Whatever the reason, I recently opened my eyes to find that my resistance to change has led this room to devolve to a messy, cluttered, and ugly space. I'd let the room languish. And a few weeks ago, I decided to fight back.
What do you do with wet dish towels that are waiting to join a load of laundry? My system is to hang them on the side of the washer so they can dry as they bide their time, a solution that is practical but not all that cute. 

So I've dedicated myself to a new laundry room attitude. I cleaned out the cupboards so that my supplies no longer have to jostle for space. I restyled the shelves to my satisfaction. Bought a few new towels. Added a happy plant. Cleaned up the clutter on the peg racks. 

And probably most importantly, I've been on top of my cleaning routine - sweeping the floor daily, staying on top of getting the clean laundry put away, wiping down the counter pretty much every time I walk by,  And I'm finding, much to my surprise, that even with her obvious bumps and bruises, there's still some life in this old girl. 

Someday, I will indeed get a new counter - running the entire length of the wall, fingers crossed - and a new floor that is not 80s vinyl. Maybe I'll even ditch the unsightly but incredibly functional plastic laundry baskets.
Gracie says she's not here to critique the decor - she's just hoping to steal some more cat food. 

For now, I'll just keep wiping up the cat hair, acknowledging my resistance to change, and waiting for my laundry room's time to come. 

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