Most weekends I make it to church and slog through a bunch of routine chores – cleaning, cooking, grocery shopping, laundry. But for the bulk of my time off, I lounge on the couch binge-watching shows like Futurama and Workaholics. (Have I mentioned that my tastes in comedy run decidedly low?) Then Monday comes and I feel guilty for not getting more done.
So last weekend, I turned off the TV, determined to tackle one of the major projects on my chore list. I was going to wash the windows! Last time I did this was when my youngest son was home for the summer after his first year in college. (He’s 30 now.) All that time I’ve watched my windows get increasingly dirty and done nothing about it but feel guilty and lazy.
Not this time! I grabbed a bottle of Windex and got busy with a stack of old newspapers. It wasn’t nearly as hard as I thought it would be. In fact I got done so quickly that I also (with the help of my very tall husband) took down, washed and replaced all my light fixtures. Then I planted pansies in my flowerbeds. Everything looked so much brighter and more colorful. It was like getting a new house! And I was happy! A little sore, but happy that for once I didn’t “waste” my weekend on the couch.
So what did I learn? Well I already knew I’d feel better if I did some of the stuff I’d been putting off. What was new was the realization that washing your windows is a great metaphor for changing your attitude. Our eyes are the windows to our souls. Yet we tend to let the “dirt” of life cloud our view to the point where we see gloom and doom everywhere we look.
Case in point: My husband (whom I affectionately call Mr. Grump) could dampen the spirits of drunken Mardi Gras revelers. And it’s no wonder why! With his steady diet of talk radio, network news and internet hyperbole, how could he possibly be a happy camper? So, every once in a while I have to put my foot down and simply refuse to hear yet another rant about how “our country is going right down the toilet!”
“Enough!” I cry. “So we’re circling the drain! But what exactly what can we do about it today? Couldn’t we at least TRY to have some fun together before we have to go back to work? Believe it or not, there is still light and hope out there if you just choose to see it!”
It’s taken quite a while, but I’ve actually got Mr. Grump admitting that life can be pretty good. Music helps. I found a station called Martini Time. Toe tappin’ stuff. That and a few games of dominoes or a few selections from the Three Stooges DVD and the atmosphere gets distinctly lighter.
So be sure to wash your windows from time to time. (And make your loved ones do it, too!)