Sunday, May 28, 2017

Laundry Day

From the very beginning of our marriage, Judy and I shared the household chores.  We never had any discussion about it.  It just seemed natural for me to do some things and for her to do others, either because of inclination or scheduling.  So for the first six years of our marriage, I was the laundry guy.  The first apartment house we lived in even had a clothesline, and I'd hang out some of the clean items to dry on the line, mainly sheets and pillowcases.

When we moved to Brownwood and bought our first house, Judy took over the laundry.  We had our own washer and dryer, and Judy was no longer working, so it seemed only natural.  I've forgotten what day she preferred to wash, but after we moved to Alvin, Tuesday became laundry day.  The reason was that we liked to have the weekends free, and most of the other days were Judy's days for playing bridge.

With doing the laundry came other chores, like folding the clothes, putting them away, and making the bed.  Judy was the folder, and she put the clothes away.  She'd often make the bed, but I usually helped with that.  In later years, I always helped or did it myself because she often wasn't up to it.  

Now Saturday is my laundry day because I don't go anywhere on the weekends, and it's a slow day for the most part.  I do the folding and make the bed, too, which finally brings me to the point of this post.  When Judy and I made the bed, she'd do "her side" and I'd do "my side."  Yesterday I was putting on the top sheet and looked across the bed.  For just a fraction of a second, I could see Judy there on her side, just as plain as day, looking just the way she did more than fifty years ago in our first apartment.  She wore the same house dress she often wore then, and while holding the top edge of the sheet in her left hand, she swept her right hand down from the top of the bed to the bottom and side to smooth the sheet just exactly the way she always did.  And then she was gone.  

12 comments:

J. Kingston Pierce said...

I love your periodical remembrances of Judy and the life you spent together. Thank you, Bill.

Kevin R. Tipple said...

I do as well. Appreciate them very much.

Because Sandi insists we wear clothes and has never embraced the "naked at home" concept, whenever we have a full load here it is laundry day. :) We have never had a designated day. I have always been the main laundry person as well as chief cook and bottle washer, and recent years have dictated it all being my job. It has gotten significantly harder to do that stuff the last couple of years, but, for now, we keep on as always.

Rick Robinson said...

What a touching moment, and your relating it to us. Thank you, Bill.

Our laundry day is Friday, because...we'll, it just is. We do it as early in the day as possible. We sort the things into light and dark by using two laundry hampers, so it's a case of toss it in, put in the soap 'n' stuff and press the buttons (I received a short lesson in that). I fold my stuff, or hang it up, after Batbara drags the dry things from the laundry room to the folding area (bed). So maybe I get 30% credit for helping with laundry. But hey, I do a lot of the cooking, and dishes that don't go into the dishwasher, so I'm not a complete flake.

Anonymous said...

Thanks for posting this.

sas

Steph said...

I like when you share these remembered moments.

When I remember a snapshot of a routine occurrence that has been buried for decades, I like to spend some time there. I recently remembered that when I was in grade school my mom would rent art from the local library. That led me to the smell of the library, and the muffled sound of shoes with hard soles on the library floor.

Jeffrey Meyerson said...

Thanks, Bill. Jackie has been making the bed most of the time since she retired, but often it is as you describe - she does her side and I do mine. She is much more particular about smoothing the sheets out than I am, I must admit.

No specific laundry day, though it is often on Sunday now. When she was working it was more likely Monday. Then I would do it in the morning after dropping her off at work. Now I wait until we get home from lunch and Starbucks and other shopping, generally late afternoon. Since I use the basement laundry room, I make sure it isn't too busy down there first. There are two top-loaders among the six washers, and I only use those.

James Reasoner said...

I love these stories.

For the most part, everybody does their own laundry here, whenever it needs to be done. I make the bed most of the time. Not quite sure how that came about, since I hated making my bed when I was a kid, but now I don't mind.

Cap'n Bob said...

Cue the Theremin. But seriously, I, too, love to hear these stories. I'll bet it was a happy moment to see Judy there, however briefly.

I do my own laundry and I have enough clothes to last at least three weeks. That's because I rarely throw anything away. I make my bed, sort of. What I do is pull the covers on one side up. The other side is covered with books and magazines and doesn't move.

George said...

I love these Judy stories, too!

When Patrick, Katie, and Helen were living with us, it seemed like very day was Laundry Day. Diane would do a couple loads each day. Now that we live in an "empty nest," Diane does a load every other day or so.

Dan said...

I remember that feeling well.

wayne d. dundee said...

Heartbreakingly beautiful.

Don Coffin said...

If you were trying to make me cry, you succeeded...a beautiful, moving experience...