My husband loves to say that laundry is one of my favorite activities. (Btw he hates being called "Al" on my blog, so I'll have to come up with a new alias.) I have laundry routines that are fairly rigid, and even if I'm very busy, the clothes will be done every Wednesday and Sunday, sheets every other weekend. See? I said it was rigid!
I used to despise the laundry. Especially the millions of tiny baby socks to be paired up, and the onesies, like 3 a day, right? Ugh! But even then, in the midst of colicky babies and burp rags, I found laundry to be something I didn't have anywhere else: a fully accomplishable goal. If I got the laundry sorted and started, it could be finished and put away. A box checked off my to do list, and a fresh start on the week.
Laundry is also a task that requires no intellectual effort. It can be done with full mindfulness on the moment. In the book Peace is Every Step, Thich Nhat Hanh describes washing dishes in a really beautiful way, feeling the warm water, enjoying the smell of the soap, and knowing that washing them allows you to eat off a clean plate tomorrow.
Laundry is my dishes, I guess, because I still hate washing the freaking dishes :) But I can apply the same mindset. I can feel the fabrics, the warmth of towels straight from the dryer, and I know DJ's favorite shirt will be clean to wear for the second time this week. I feel calmed as I fold, with no thought except how to get the fitted sheet into a neat square (maybe someday!). But also because I have met a goal and attained an endpoint. How many places in life can we say that is true? The best part? There is ALWAYS more laundry...
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