Looking for a sense of accomplishment

Sunday, January 23, 2011
Another dust bunny appearance at my house...

It has taken me a little while to realize the small things that make me feel like I have accomplished something. These things are so small, they make me think I have some kind of problem to derive satisfaction from them. So this is either endearing or pathetic; judge for yourself.

Recent accomplishments
  • I like when there is a lot of lint in the dryer lint collector and I can peel it off with a flourish and toss it in the trash.
  • Most weeks, I like to sweep rather than vacuum. (Vacuums are too noisy and I hate to plug things in and pull them around.) I especially like to make a significant (greater than 4" diameter) pile of dust and dirt. (I know it is against the law, but sometimes I just throw the pennies away; every single time, though, I debate this issue in my head. "Does this mean I don't respect money? Do pennies matter?") From now on, I am throwing the pennies and Legos away without conflict. 
  • Now if I do choose to vacuum, I like to undo the little dirt holder and find a lot of dirt. The more the better. Behind the washing machine hiding places are particularly satisfying.
  • I like to pre-treat with a stain remover and have it work.
  • I like to fill the dishwasher very full and with precision.
  • I like to empty the pencil sharpener and refill the stapler (but only when the former is very full and the later is very empty)

Given how much fun I seem to have doing these chores, you would think I would do them more often. But I don't.

But what does it mean?

Maybe dirt is tangible proof I exist; that I did something real, something you can measure in a cup. It is hard to do this most days with, for example, kids or your job or your life.  { This cannot be right -- other suggestions welcome }

I once remarked to a colleague, "It is more satisfying to empty the vacuum cleaner than to do my job on any given day." This is sounding very bleak indeed.

{ Image: The original 'dust bunny' }

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