Thursday, August 2, 2012

What I Discovered While Going Through Delton's Laundry

"It is nice to know there is one pile in this house that I am not responsible for." That is how I explained to Delton why I wasn't going to put his clean clothes in his dresser. Do laundry- yes. Fold it and iron it- yes. After placing the pile of folded clothes on his dresser or the bed, my job was done. Finito.
A few weeks ago, I decided to bless Delton (and myself!) by clearing off the mountains of clean laundry that covered most of the horizontal space around his dresser. And what I discovered has stuck with me....
Delton's drawers were stuffed full of clothes. Too many clothes in too little a space. As I looked through each drawer, I realized that Delton was using a broken system without complaint. I could help with that. I love to organize, and I know where the resources are to help with this project.
I cleared out winter clothes. Discarded several "paint" shirts. I moved in a three shelf wire rack and filled it with  nicely folded t-shirts, shorts, and even some empty space...leaving his dresser hassle free. Breathable.
I was amazed that simply taking the time to step into Delton's life...into an area I had intentionally stayed out of...had given me a greater glimpse of the man I married (he is not a complainer, he likes to hold on to things ) and had enabled me to truly be his helpmate...using my talents to cover his weakness.
What a thought...simply getting involved in the lives of those around us. What could change if we detoured around our usual pathways, our usual routines, our usual duties, and looked at life through the eyes of those we love? First...our immediate family. Our spouses. Our children. What boundaries have I erected that need to come crashing...tumbling...clattering down?

"Her relationship with her mother isn't my problem. I'm staying out of that one"
"When he gets his act together, then I'll..."
"They're her bills, not mine!"
"She has her chores, I have mine."

Where have we drawn lines that have become barriers to deeper relationship, true intimacy? Just a thought that has helped my in my relationships.

I now put Delton's laundry away most of the time. Each time, I delight in the stream-lined, organized system. I enjoy helping him, recognizing all the ways he helps me. So even though all the piles in the house are now my responsibility, I am finding that I don't mind that. I'm even smiling about it.