Yet again I am engaged in the deadly habit of procrastination. Why is it that every time the holidays roll around I fool myself into thinking that if I do one productive thing per day-just one-then the entire day has been a success? Today’s “productive task” consisted of emailing some photos that I had promised to a friend; a task which, even at 26 weeks pregnant and rapidly expanding, was hardly taxing. Well done me, I sent an email. Meanwhile the flat remains in the sort of state that would have even the stars (contestants? Victims? “Stars” scarcely seems accurate) of the Jeremy Kyle Show ringing social services.
In fact, several of the participants on today’s show had the accusation levelled at them that they couldn’t be good parents (mothers. It’s always the mothers. No one ever chides the men for being poor homemakers. Not even Jeremy, who chides them for pretty much everything else) because their houses were “a tip.”
Hmm. I have the shattered remains of a cardboard box lying on the floor next to the dishwasher which formerly housed a piece of furniture I had delivered in February. FEBRUARY. Well, chopping it up into little bits so that it fits into the recycling chute requires effort.
Apparently, according to one of my books on hypnobirthing, just before a woman gives birth she suddenly develops a “nesting instinct,” and runs fretfully around the house, cleaning and prepping everything in sight for the arrival of the baby. I so wish this would happen to me. At the moment I can’t even be bothered to change the sheets on the bed (requires effort) and have been running the tumble dryer on repeat all day under the pretext that the clothes in there are not quite dry and so the washing machine cannot yet be freed up for cleaning sheets. This is not because I don’t want my sheets to be clean-everyone loves a clean sheet-but because I cannot bear the task of trying to stretch a fresh one over the bed, or worse, the horror of changing the duvet cover, the thought of which is enough to bring me out in a cold sweat. This is why I need a husband. I promise I will cook every meal he ever requires if he promises to change the bedclothes in perpetuity.
As my mother would say, in the verbal equivalent of shaking an accusatory finger at me, “You had better get this flat sorted out when the baby comes my girl.”