Hi, I’d like to submit my yearly hours of time spent folding laundry—mine, my sons’ and the communal laundry (sheets, towels, and occasionally the sofa cover)—for reimbursement. I am not looking for monetary reimbursement, I would specifically like to be reimbursed in time spent. As we’ve recently gone paperless, please notify me via e-mail when these hours have been added back onto my life.
I’ve invoiced you for about 2,500 hours which seems high but please take into account that I have a young baby at home who blows through outfits faster than Lady Gaga at the Superbowl halftime show, albeit for different reasons.
My current rate is one meaningful hour of existence for every hour spent doing any of the following:
-Cleaning the stove
-Cleaning the countertops
-Frantically scrubbing burnt brownie pans in an attempt to make them look new again (NOT SUCCESSFUL)
-Cleaning food off the floor like the janitorial staff at Medieval Times
-Scrubbing urine out of the carpet
-Putting away things that I did not take out/use
-Pushing crumbs under the rug with my hand
-Occasionally cooking something
-Sending out holiday cards
Please note that I have not invoiced you for hours walking the dog, as walking the dog allows me to walk around the neighborhood listening to podcasts, pretending that I am twenty four years old and do not have any kids or pressing responsibilities.
Please note that I am not invoicing you for time spent dusting or cleaning the bathroom because I have abandoned those duties completely and am content to let the bathroom and the dust-coated window blinds disintegrate and/or rot back into the earth.
Because I’ve had issues with your billing department in the past, please note that the hours should be added to the present day. I’m not looking for hours to be added to my life when I’m in my late 80’s with one tooth left—the age where I spend half the day either urinating or complaining about the humidity. Please add all reimbursed hours to the current time so that I can enjoy my kids while they’re young instead of just chasing after them with a dustpan like a freelance disaster management agency.
Payment within 30 days is appreciated, as they are both getting older quickly. This time, as you are well aware, goes so fast, and I would much rather be on the floor of the living room playing with them than standing in my bedroom folding 2,000 pairs of miniature underpants.
Thank you so much for your business!
* * *
Thanks for reading! If you enjoyed this piece, please feel free to purchase one of the following:
My book, Welcome to the Club, particularly if you are looking for a baby shower gift (or a holiday gift for someone with a young child). Available here. (Fun note! It has two one-star reviews– one from a woman who said the book made her question “whether getting pregnant was the right choice” (maybe not?) and one from someone upset that when the book arrived the cover was banged up)
My husband’s chapbook, The Secret Traits of Everyday Things by Encircle Publications. For those four people who still read poetry, he’s a lovely and talented guy who also just won first prize in the Ledbury Poetry competition.
You can also pre-order my new book, The Welcome to the Club Journal, which is a more interesting way to keep a baby book. Because everyone says, “Oh, I don’t have time to fill out a baby book” but we all somehow have time to fill out that online quiz that tells us which Golden Girl we are? (I’m Rose) It’s about priorities.
Also, this bathing suit, which I saw in the window of a SoHo store years ago and think about from time to time.