I've been neglecting housework these past weeks as I race to finish up this semester. Certainly, if I used the time I spent procrastinating on chores, I would have both a clean home and time to complete my academic work. Still I procrastinate.
I've just - finally - scoured my stove. I've been meaning to do this for weeks; every time I've walked into the kitchen, the caked-on grease splatters, spill-overs and crumbs have drawn from my lips a sigh as despairing as a dirge. That stove has been taunting me, reminding me that I have not been on top of things, that I fail, that I have not been managing my time properly, that I have not been feeding myself properly, that I am undernourished and not only in terms of dinner.
I have so very much to do today. Deadlines have kaleidoscoped - they seem to have infinitely expanded. But just now I have finally scoured the stove. It sparkles, it shines, it practically sings. I feel more relaxed than I have in days. Finishing the dishes doesn't seem so daunting. Outlining one more chapter of Nietzsche? Peachy. 20 more pages of Beauvoir? I'll do more! Plato? Great-o. Grading? ugh. grating. (ok, this is going to annoy even myself now!)
The point being that I should realize by now just how important these seemingly trivial chores really are. Doing the dishes, folding the laundry, scouring the stove are such mindless, easy chores, none of which can really be done while also doing anything school-related. But when they are not done, they elicit such a sense of failure - "I can't even get my laundry folded! I am a miserable wretch!" every single time.
Clearly it is not enough to have sparkling moments academically. My stove must also sparkle. There's going to be a metaphor in here somewhere. probably something having to do with my character. probably having something to do with dark, unscoured corners of my ethical orientations which seem trivial and easily brushed aside. But then, I've got too much work to do to spend time fully exploring this ... ;-)