Let me start by saying this:
There is only one correct way to load the dishwasher.
Now, let’s learn how to let go of control.
Adjust my attitude and accept that there are multiple correct ways to load the dishwasher, but mine is the best one.
Learn to think that as long as it all fits, it doesn’t matter how the dishwasher is loaded.
(this gives me OCD)
Learn to say this to the famdamily:
Since I am the only one who empties the dishwasher I have a right to demand order in the dishwasher which facilities the emptying portion of dishwasher duty.
(this doesn’t work because they just ignore me)
A slightly passive-aggressive method of communication could be along the lines of this statement:
Your job is to empty the dishwasher and refill it as part of your household responsibilities. Fill it any which way you like as long as you also empty it when it is done. If you want to learn what is efficient, I’m happy to show you my way.
Grin and bear it when chaos (or unfinished dishwasher duty) prevails.
I got home yesterday afternoon and cleaned for four hours. I’m not done but I can live with it for now. Having left them alone for almost two weeks resulted in a few interesting adjustments in terms of how the household was run but all in all, it wasn’t bad. They did alright, and this encourages me to plan future getaways.
For instance, the bathroom had toilet paper stocked. This is pretty cool for people who don’t know how to change an empty toilet paper roll.
Never mind that the hand towel in the bathroom was wet and dirty. No one thought of replacing it with a clean one.
They also washed and folded the bed sheets. It’s unimportant that they were folded incorrectly (we don’t have a linen closet and folding them a certain way ensures they all fit in that spot in the adult clothes closet). It is also unimportant that they were mixed up – the kids twin sheets with the queen sized ones. Sorry, this gives me OCD. Then, I noticed the queen bed needed fresh sheets and when I reached for the set I wanted, the entire pile of mixed together sheets fell on my head which rendered the (incorrect) folding and putting away moot.
I stared at the pile of messed up sheets on the floor and threw them in an empty laundry basket. I’ll re-fold them later. (OCD, again). (Blah)
Also, the fridge, which I had stocked full of mostly nutritious but ready to eat food was still relatively full, indicating that they did eat out more often than I had anticipated/hoped. Which is unfortunate but can’t be helped. I realize what happened was when he was out picking up lumber or supplies, he probably passed food establishments and since the kids stopped doing any and all chores, including food prep, at the onset of the pandemic, I can understand that pick-up is much easier.
It’s all good. None of the food was spoiled and I am back at the helm in the kitchen. Also, the chore chart is back on the fridge and sooner or later, I will find a way to get them back on track.
We both dropped the ball with the kids during all the lockdown stress, but I will openly admit that it’s been mostly three against one. I do not shy away from conflict, mainly because in this instance (chores and responsibilities), the conflict is short-lived. Kids, teenagers especially, will push boundaries and I can accept that to a degree. I solo-parented on and off long enough to know that a transition period will get everyone back on track, but I need both adults to be on the same page and expect and enforce the same things. It will take time to get that back, hopefully before school begins anew in September.
We shall see.
In the meantime, the deck they built out back is wonderful and expected to be finished by the end of this week (if it stops raining – this has delayed a few activities temporarily).
Now, about the dishwasher: is there or isn’t there a correct way to load it?
See you in the comments.