I left the house on a Sunday night. I'd spent the majority of the day doing laundry for the various humans in my home. I fold laundry, as I do most tasks of tedium, not listening to NPR as most of my neighborhood claims but in front of the TV. After the final load of laundry was put away, I left the empty laundry basket in the living room tucked up against the coffee table; partly because I didn't feel like walking upstairs again, and partly as a test. Yes, General Akbar, it was a trap of sorts. I wanted to see if anyone would bring it upstairs. I left that night to do what I do and I returned Tuesday afternoon to find the laundry basket in the same exact location; untouched by human hands or even toppled by the dog trying to get to whatever crumbs were left temptingly on the coffee table.
I say it was a trap to catch my children and husband in the act of willful laziness, but it was really a trap for good old me. There was a part of me that hoped someone would do what needed to be done, what seemed excruciatingly obvious to me; but most of me knew the basket would be there with its pathetic lonely used dryer sheet still hovering in the corner. And of course I was frustrated. No, I was mad. I actually trapped myself into being mad. My miscalculation came in the assumption that Husband and Teenagers 1 & 2 would walk into the living room from any angle and see the laundry basket. That was, in fact, my fatal flaw Aristotle.
That is when I realized that seeing is subjective.
I walk into the living room and I see:
- blankets askew and piled in violation of all magazine recommendations
- empty glasses with juice puddles waiting to be tipped and dripped all over the rug
- random bottle caps left to find their own way to the trash
- dirty socks on floors, furniture and draped on the dog
- jackets fallen from their hooks
- mail unsorted and neglected
- clumps of dog hair amassing troops in corners to wage war on my pride
- An empty laundry basket
- The TV
- Places to sit and lie down
- Blankets to keep them warm
- a convenient place to find socks
- a convenient overall location to call out to the kitchen for food and drink