Ironing and Love
Can this be a tool of love?
I have often said that you can tell the stage in life of a family by looking at their laundry basket. Certainly there are times when the basket is full of bibs and sleep sacks, and then training pants and toddler overalls, followed by school clothes, sweaty athletic uniforms, and then emptiness as your babies become young adults. My basket is pretty empty now. But, this past weekend, our youngest child who has been in his first job out of school just a few months, asked if I would iron a couple of shirts for his first business trip. Of course I said yes and he showed up a bit later with about 6 loads of clothes….including 8 shirts and at least that many pairs of pants that needed ironing. I have never liked to iron; as a matter of fact my own mother will often iron for me when she visits because she knows it is not my favorite chore. I must admit that I never understood how my Mom enjoyed ironing for me. Who could enjoy that chore? She had to be lying! So, when my son showed up with all this laundry and ironing, I must admit I was a little annoyed at first. After all, he was leaving the next day and I needed to get it done that evening. As I began washing, folding and yes ironing I began to feel my annoyance turn to love. As I folded his t-shirts, and carefully ironed his dress pants and shirts, I thought of those small shirts and pants from years ago. I thought of the excitement he had now with this new experience on his horizon, and as I carefully folded that last t-shirt my heart was over flowing. I get it now….I understand why my Mom enjoys ironing when she is here. She must feel that same love for me just as I felt for my son as I did something I had never enjoyed or really taken the time to think about in the past; but now was able to stop and take the time to reminisce about washing those many clothes when he was that sweet baby, and busy, busy toddler, and grimy little fisherman, and sweaty football player and now a young man with an exciting new career. I was able to iron those shirts with thought and love because my life has slowed down. I guess I was always doing that laundry with love, I just had the time to realize it now. Those laundry baskets sure are full of much more than just dirty clothes…Moms do all things with love.
Take a breath, enjoy the joyful moments of each day, and remember you don’t have to be perfect to be the perfect parent.