the wet sweater effect

I wore a damp sweater to my last Board meeting.

That's because I was so behind on laundry that I had nothing else to put on, and I couldn't turn on the dryer to finish it up because it was 6:30 in the morning, and I definitely didn't want to wake up our daughter with the dryer noise. (Sound carries in our house like crazy.)

Yes, I am indeed the person who told you she does a load of laundry a day, and it makes life so much simpler.

I have fallen off the laundry wagon. And I am okay with that. Finally. Because I know I will get back on.

I used to try experiments like the laundry effort, and things would go well, and then at some point I would "screw it up." And I would sigh and decide that there was no way that thing could work in my life and I was destined to have piles of laundry forever and what was wrong with me that I couldn't keep doing this thing that was so obviously helpful to me.

No more.

Well, actually, more like: Not so often anymore. I do still have a trigger "you screwed it up" reaction, and then I remind myself:

I experiment with this kind of thing ALL THE TIME. Which means that I have now done the "Hey! This thing works!"/"I'm chugging along!"/"$#@&%. Trainwreck." dance about a gazillion times. And I've learned that I always have stops and starts, even with the stuff that works well. The whole family gets sick, it's tech week, you and your partner both have insane work shit at the same freaking time, a vacation, an emergency, your kid has a birthday, a Presidential election, you just space out for a while.

It doesn't necessarily mean all is lost. In fact, I think most of the time all is not lost. Most of the time, you just gotta restart. Try again. Maybe make a tweak or two to your system.

At the most recent quit-smoking anniversary my husband had, he reminded me how many times he tried to quit. Five. At least. Serious attempts. And at least four other semi-serious tries. That's nine times. Nine times before it finally stuck.

Cigarettes are a hard effing habit to break. Cluttering up our schedules and our homes with procrastination and social media binge-ing and shopping and all that other stuff we do is addictive, too. I think it's totally reasonable for us to have to try again. (And again and again.)

The wet sweater was my tipping point. So I caught up. I'm back to one load a day.

And this is a post about laundry sort of, but it's also about eating well or exercising or getting enough sleep or warming up your voice or setting aside creative time or reaching out to friends on a regular basis or not yelling or not gossiping or managing your email inbox.

Whatever helpful, enjoyable, healthful-for-you wagon you've fallen off, climb back on board with me. We'll just try again, okay?