Imagine lining up each garment you’ve ever laundered, laying a path from your dryer door to the world beyond. Could you walk to town without your feet touching the ground? Could you cover Route 66 in matchless socks? Could you circumnavigate the globe with your family t-shirt collection alone?Could you string it behind a rocket to the moon and still be dragging coattails through the Cape Canaveral sand?
Laundry–mountains and mountains of laundry–that’s what you get with a 4 kid family, a farm, and a husband who doesn’t believe he’s really accomplished anything unless he gets filthy in the process. I spent the last fifteen years with a double set of washers and dryers, struggling so hard to keep up that I feared those rare times when the laundry baskets were empty might cause a rift in the space-time continuum.
Don’t think I don’t realize how fortunate I’ve been all these years. Don’t think I didn’t design my farmhouse around two key elements: a generous laundry room and a walk-in pantry. Don’t think I don’t know what a blessing it is to be buried in the soiled remains of the day, a day filled with practices, perspiration, and maybe even a mud pie.
But the times, they are a-changin’. The kids are growing up with that paradoxical speed that’s years in the making. I’m shifting. I’m rearranging. The truth of the matter is that I plumb wore out Big Red the dryer. It started screeching like a banshee and smelling like a backfiring lawn mower when I decided it was time to pull the plug. Once Big Red got hauled to the dump, there was a gaping hole in my laundry room and a definite feng shui faux pas. Two washing machines and one dryer threw the whole laundry room, and naturally my highly developed laundry handling system, out of balance.
Whenever the universe falls out of balance, fate (or the Force) steps in. I happened across a Facebook friend in sudden need of a washing machine. This young mom sent her husband in a driving rainstorm to retrieve my extra washer! If you, Gentle Reader, are a mom of little ones, I know you totally understand her plight. After the accumulated embarrassment of almost a decade’s worth of dirt kicked up under that washing machine, I sent the dutiful and drenched husband off to save the day. Several rounds with the broom and mop later, I emerged from my newly found extra square footage sweat-soaked and exhausted…a One Washer Woman.