This morning as I stumbled out of bed and was Braille-ing my way across my bedside table in hopes of finding my spectacles, I had this thought, “I don’t think a bedside table is supposed to look like this.” Which, of course, got me to thinking. Always a dangerous thing – deep thoughts before coffee or the morning voiding of one’s bladder. Usually such thoughts just flit through my mind and are gone, but then I walked back to my bedside to rummage through the piles of dirty laundry for my slippers and I noticed my bedside table again. Oh my. I really need to do something about the state of that thing.
I have had quite a bit of therapy, so I can admit to being a terrible housekeeper. Truly, I am dismal. Oh, I think about cleaning and how joyous a clean house makes me feel, but then the actual follow-through comes into play and I get tired just pondering how to go about doing such things. So, my house is typically not available for guests. Well, perhaps I should say, if you’d like to come over and see me, think nothing of just dropping by if finding me in my pajamas at 2:00 p.m. won’t be distressing for you. But if you’d like to see the actual grain in the wooden surfaces in my house, you’d better give me some notice…three weeks should be enough.
And my bedroom is no oasis of housekeeping peace either, let me tell you. There are dust bunnies in there that defy logic.
So, my bedside tables. Yes, this is supposed to be an unveiling of the state of those beasts and I’ve been distracted by my admission of a sloven lifestyle. But they are most likely related, I am afraid.
I got curious just now and actually dragged my pajama-clad self back upstairs to look. And so, here is the run down of the bedside tables in the master bedroom at my house. We’ll start with my husband’s as that is less disturbing.
His table has: one lamp; 5 books, including a trilogy I got him last year for Christmas that he has only just started; a pair of spectacles (which make him look tres chic, but he never wears!); three cough drop wrappers; a used facial tissue; and 6 Pokemon cards.
My table has: one lamp, 7 magazines; 3 books (one of which is The Dog Trainer’s Guide to Parenting); a tube of Desitin, a crumpled note from my daughter which depicts me with a triangular body, which is actually accurate; an unused diaper, size 4; and 11 types of hand lotion.
Eleven types of hand lotion? What on earth is going on here, people? I look like I need to join some 12-step program for addiction. Perhaps the really terrible thing is that only one of those lotions actually smells good. The rest all smell like some terrible combination of Elmer’s glue and a science experiment gone terribly awry.
I don’t think a married couple’s bedside tables are supposed to look like this – dusty and reflective of the harried lives of the people who use them. I mean, shouldn’t there be at least a patina of romance in one’s bedroom? If there is one in mine, there is too much dust covering it and I couldn’t find it.
You see, not only am I a married, middle aged woman, but I have three smallish children – making the Pokemon cards and the diapering accouterments perhaps a logical addition. But the lotions? I am sorry to say that they are not present in my bedroom as some exotic marital aid, although I am sure some would implement them in such fashion if they thought it would work. No, I have 11 kinds of lotions at my beddy-bye fingertips because my fingertips are disgusting.
Like, disgusting in the way of, “Hey, I see you have a block of wood you need sanding. Shall I give it a try?” As in, “Um, mom, don’t rub my back, okay?” Or even, “Before we hold hands during the movie, would you mind putting your gloves back on?”
You may think I’m exaggerating and I admit to a certain fondness of hyperbole. However, the state of my little nation’s skin is pretty bad. A person’s skin is her largest organ, and my organ – large as it may be – wins no awards. Well, no awards you’d want to admit to winning.
Skin such as mine was a gift from my mother. I remember as a child when I’d have on my polyester based nightgown and my mother would need to put Vicks on me. While I loved the motherly ministrations, the pain of her cracked and scaly skin fairly overshadowed the love those menthol fumes called out to me. I can still hear the sound of her knuckles pulling on the fabric, “rip, rip, rip.” Who knew years later, I’d be putting my own children through such love? And it isn’t like I haven’t tried to correct this little problem of mine, as evidenced by having 11 types of lotion by my bed, three on the dresser across the room, four in the bathroom across the hall, and probably close to another 8 or 9 in the hall closet. I buy lotions like some women buy purses or shoes. Except that I go for lotions that claim dermatologists’ recommendations rather than connections to flowers. I even have a few that required a doctor’s prescription. They were no more effective than all the rest. My skin is so bad, especially on my hands, that I cannot renew my teacher’s license due to my inability to leave all 10 digits on the fingerprinting card. While this is handy if one is looking for a life of crime, it is not so good for romantic walks in the park. (I can imagine it now, “Look at this Inspector! It seems a reptile was the perpetrator of this crime. Check out these prints!”
So, I guess this is all just to give fair warning. If you come on over to my house, without the necessary three weeks’ lead time, don’t bother digging through my bedside table in hopes of finding racy magazines or marital aids. Nope. All you’ll find will be dust and lotions with “urea” as the main ingredient.