My almost-15-year old son, affectionately known at our house and on this blog as Clark the ADHD Wonder Kid, is a mess. You *think* your kid is mess, but I’m pretty sure Clark beats your kid up one side and down the other. I don’t mean to brag or anything, it’s just that this is one of the areas in which he puts in his best effort, and it really shows.
Last week he had 12.5-hour football lock-ins for 3-a-day practices, indoctrination, and brainwashing. Understandably he was dragging ass a bit when he got home.
The week before, he had been given a routine task — fold the laundry. It took him all day, but he assured me he had completed the job in a quality fashion. He batted his Bambi eyes at me and, fool that I am, I believed him.
OK, so back to last week. Eric can’t find any underwear. Now, a quick explanation about Eric and underwear (which I know he will appreciate). Eric changes underwear every time he goes near a bathroom. Wait, that’s an exaggeration. Eric changes his underwear every other time he goes near a bathroom. So he owns like 70 pair. I’m not lying.
Or at least he did.
Last week, he had ZERO pairs. Which caused a panic and resulted in me swearing to conduct a search and rescue mission on his skivvies.
I started in the laundry room, worked my way into the game room where we keep the unfolded laundry on our ping pong table (you really must get a ping pong table for laundry — I’m serious, I don’t know what I ever did without it — it can hold up to 20 unfolded loads), and on to the living room where Clark did the folding.
Now, I don’t go upstairs into the three-kid-dormitory section of our house unless it is truly an emergency. I thought about Eric unable to change his pants, squirming and unhappy, and I sucked it up, because that’s the kind of goddess woman I am. I climbed those stairs. I went in Clark’s room.
Normally, I take pictures with my iPhone, as y’all know from this site. But even for the sake of humor, I could not bring myself to document the horror of his room. I couldn’t find the floor, and there was no way I would find the 70 pairs of underwear without a gas mask and a jack hammer.
Thirty cussing spitting screaming minutes later, I not only found a few pairs of my beloved’s drawers, but I also found my clothes and clothes belonging to everyone else in the house but Clark. I found them on his closet floor, on his couch, under his dirty clothes, and — wait for it — UNDER HIS BED INSIDE A LINEN BOX. All these clothes had been worn and washed in the last 10 days.
He didn’t just phone this one in.
(I also found the Sports Illustrated Swimsuit edition magazine under his mattress, but that’s the subject of a different post)
Normally I would have gone all Psycho Mom at this point, but I knew from the state of this room that Clark did not have the organization and initiative to put his room in order. I planned his “consequence” for his bad choice about the laundry, then I congratulated myself on being the nicest Mom in the history of the world and
I * CLEANED * HIS * ROOM!!!
When I finished two hours later, I decided to do a little labeling to help the ADHD side of his brain keep the room in order for a coupla days.
I added a few extra notes:
When I was done, his room looked like it had been hit by a blue sticky blizzard.
We had the big reveal after practice that day (and after our “thou shalt perform slave labor for Eric this weekend without complaint” talk). I worried he would be mad about my clean-up and stickies; that, in turn, would have made me mad, and the whole warm fuzzy element would have been shot to hell. He likes things to remain the same — even if they are cluttered and messy — and he takes time to process his thoughts. I shouldn’t have worried, though.
He loved it.
He especially loved that I put the magazine back where I found it.
Enjoy your day,
p.s. We never found all 70 pair of Eric’s underwear. He’s getting twitchy so I’m headed to Wal-Mart, STAT.