This past weekend we had a pretty involved visit at The Farmstead. I can't reveal just yet what we're up to but suffice to say there were cameras and they were recording. We welcomed them onto the farm and into our home. And I did something really radical.
I didn't stay up all night cleaning.
And, even more radical...
I didn't apologize for the mess.
This is a first for me. Every time someone comes to the farm I caveat their visit with, "please ignore the disaster zone, we're under construction," or "please ignore the burn piles, we just logged," or "please ignore that my bathroom doesn't have base boards, we're replacing some that were damaged from the indoor ducks and some incontinent cats". I could have said that this time...it's all still true. But I didn't.
This mess is my home.
I didn't make myself crazy when I got home from work trying to make a dent tidying up because I chose to hang out with Gizmo instead. I didn't clean after she went to bed and I didn't wake up early to clean because I'm not a teenager anymore and I need my sleep to ward off those pesky under eye bags that creep up even more when I'm tired.
When the crew arrived our bed was made and the toilet and cat boxes were clean. My child was fed and the animals were watered. I didn't rush around that morning, I enjoyed snuggling with Gizmo in my bed just like I do every other morning. Throughout the day I did explain about some of the really obvious messes...but I didn't apologize.
I regret nothing.
Some day this farm won't be a construction zone and I won't have the piles of garbage and building supplies everywhere. I look forward to that day.
But this farm will always be our home.
Which means there will always be traces of Gizmo around: sticky cupboards, duplos scattered about, and whatever bits of food the cats didn't clean up. And there will always be the remnants of a busy life: clothes that need to be folded, dishes that need to be put away, cat puke that we just haven't found yet. I'm okay with that. To me, those "messes" represent the choice we make on a daily basis to snuggle 10 minutes longer in bed or spend 10 more minutes with the goats. Nothing immediately tangible comes from these choices, certainly not as tangible as a spik-n-span house. But the older Gizmo gets I see i, in the strength of our bond and in our growth as a family.
And I'll trade a messy house for that any day of the week.