Peace of My Heart

An encouraging voice to drown out the noise

~Control Freak~ October 22, 2014

Filed under: Uncategorized — Valerie Rutledge @ 8:45 am
Tags: , , , , , , ,

Hello, my name is Valerie and I have a problem.

Apparently I have a slight case of OCD when it comes to the cleanliness & organization of my home. While this wouldn’t be a big deal if I lived alone, it does pose a problem between myself and the other 6 people with whom I cohabitat. It’s not that they’re pigs, (not all of them anyways), but they don’t place as high a value on an orderly home as I do. They just don’t see the fun in housekeeping so it’s not a priority to them. I know, I don’t understand it either.

Just last week I went on a cleaning frenzy that included scrubbing the floors on my hands & knees and bleaching the ceilings…don’t ask. I was feeling pretty accomplished until my brood came rolling in with muddy cleats, soaking wet running shoes and an assortment of stuff to clutter my recently decluttered space. This would be when my alter ego unleashed its fury.

Here’s the thing, my kids and spouse do help out around the house, but they don’t do it my way, aka the right way! Autumn puts away the dishes but she puts my coffee cups right side up! Have you ever heard of such nonsense?! The boys ‘clean’ their room but not to my standards. My two littles like to help wash dishes which leads to a small flood across the counter that spills over onto the floor. My hubs will jump in and help with the laundry but will probably think twice about doing so in the future after that time I bit his head off for putting a hang-to-dry sweater in the dryer. (Ok, so I didn’t really bite his head off but if looks could kill, I’d be a widow.)


Sadly, this is not the only area where I struggle with being a control freak. I love volunteering and giving of my time & talents but sometimes, I get a little twitchy when I think a task should be done more efficiently. I don’t know what my problem is but I fully intend to ask Jesus why He made me this way 😉 During a recent episode, I paused to think about the amount of undue stress I was causing myself by getting my britches in a twist when things weren’t run the way I would have done it. Since when did I become manager of the universe?!

At this point in my life, it would appear I have two options: I can continue with my controlling ways and drive my people batty to the point that they literally expect me to do it all OR I can do as the picture suggests and “tuck in my crazy” and simply be thankful for what they do instead of cringing at how they do it.

 “Martha, Martha,” the Lord answered. “You are worried and upset about many things. But only one thing is needed.”

(Luke 10:41-42)


5 Responses to “~Control Freak~”

  1. Lisa Umberger Arundale Says:

    I think you may have gotten it from me! I’ve gotten much less so as the years have passed, but I used to be quite the task master, especially when I was teaching! I finally learned to lighten up and realize that everyone is doing their best with the priorities they have in their own lives. Doesn’t mean that we shouldn’t put a little pressure on when our task needs to be the priority though.

    I can just picture your girls giggling as they “wash” the dishes with water running everywhere. And what comes to my mind is how fondly you will remember this scene in years to come when they are older and how you will probably wish for a wet countertop, cabinets and kitchen floor then. Sometimes the best memories are the things that pushed our buttons at the time.

    I don’t know if your Dad every told you this story, but when we were kids, Mom’s aunts and uncles & familes would gather at our house for holidays sometimes and what a crazy mess it would be. Kids sleeping everywhere, the only toilet we had stopping up at least twice during the visit, and clutter clutter everywhere. Well, Uncle Bobby’s wife, Aunt Ida, was a clean freak. Her house was so clean that dirt didn’t even attempt to come in! She would wash the dishes after our huge meal and Aunt Ola would dry, Mom would put away. Well, Aunt Ida was washing everything she could get her hands on as the men were in the other room laughing and talking, the kids were running through the kitchen screaming and laughing in between trips my Mom was making to put away the dishes and before Mom could stop her, Aunt Ida had grabbed up the antenna to the radio we had in the kitchen, dunked it in the sink, soaped it up real good and gave it to Aunt Ola to dry!

    It was as if EVERYTHING stopped as Mom held up the radio atenna and said, “Ida, did you just wash this?” She said “yes” & the whole house laughed. And I still remember it with such fondness. That was the essence of a family long gone now — all of them. But even though that radio never worked the same way again & those were the days when you didn’t just go out and buy another one, the memory was so much better than the problem.

    On that note, I wish you many wet cabinets, lots of shrunken sweaters and beds made in the oddest of ways for years to come.

    Bless all families in this stage of their lives – and all the Mother’s who are challenged to see past their instincts to keep things in “perfect order” so that memories can be created every day. It’s what makes life so very sweet!

    Love you all,
    Aunt Lisa

    • Oh my goodness, I can picture Ma-maw now! Love it!
      I have definitely gotten better over the years about trying not to sweat the small stuff, especially where the kids are concerned. And as you pointed out, boy have we made some memories! Not too long ago, Bella colored an entire wall in the hallway, something that would normally send me into orbit. This time it made me smile & I left it there. I was actually pretty sad when we had to clean it up to list the house.
      One thing is for sure, motherhood, like life, is very messy and we can either embrace the mess or lose our minds trying to control it!
      Love you much, Aunt Lisa! XOXO

  2. Tuck that back in!! Lololol!!

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