Real talk: I struggle with keeping order in my house. There’s a pretty constant layer of clutter, in the form of glasses in our sink, mail on our front table, and shoes kicked off just inside our front door. Some may even go as far as saying I’m “messy.” Even though I know I fit all the signs you're a messy person, I’m a little resistant to adopting this label myself. It just kinda feels like I’m too busy living my best life to stop and clean. And by "living my best life," I mean chasing after a naked, running toddler with a diaper in my hand, losing count of the amount of coffee I’ve needed in a particular day, or staying up suuuuuper late to make a deadline and trudging around like a zombie the next morning. I’m almost positive that’s what Oprah had in mind when she coined the term. But still, it feels unnecessary and wrong for that to mean I have a wear a label that is so often associated with being lazy, or ineffectual. I'm neither, and I know that, so I shy away from self-identifying as messy, although, hey, the randomly tossed aside shoe fits.
I guess my identity as a "messy" person goes even deeper: I’m not a naturally clean person. In the past, I’ve had roommates that were tidy as hell, and while we butted heads at the time (shout out to Briana, Katie, Jane, Melissa, Marci, and Laura — sorry for all the towels) I’m not-so-secretly jealous of people who can move through their day without leaving a trail behind them. For the record, I’m not talking hoarders-level clutter issues. That's clearly a whole other set of problems. This is more about a steady state of manageable clutter in our household that, frankly, I'm starting to doubt will ever go away.
While I’m working on my housekeeping abilities (as I will be until the day I drop dead), I’ve stopped beating myself up over this fault. And, like the former camp counselor I'll always be, I harbor an ability to see the bright side in things, so allow me to share the good parts about being messy, and being a parent: