Struggle care: a new way to rethink housework

by Carolyn Thomas  ♥  @HeartSisters

Regular readers might recall my story of a bizarre housecleaning ritual that started after my heart attack.  I felt so frightened and overwhelmed by what had just happened to me that I became convinced I would die overnight in my bed – very likely tonight! – from another “widow maker” heart attack.

So pervasive was this conviction that for several weeks, I would clean the entire apartment every evening before bedtime, so the paramedics (or worse! – the family) wouldn’t find a mess when they discovered my corpse the next morning. The curious part was my worry that I’d still somehow be judged by my housekeeping skills – even after death!? 

KC Davis is a Texas psychotherapist with a keen interest in how we respond to care tasks. These tasks are basically any job/chore/errand that’s required to care for oneself and keep life going on at home. But never-ending care tasks can seem insurmountable in the face of certain life changes – like having a baby, or a death in the family, or a divorce, or getting sick.  Before, we used to be able to handle those care tasks on autopilot – but sometimes, that autopilot breaks down.

I discovered KC Davis when I stumbled upon her popular TEDx talk called How To Do Laundry When You’re Depressed.  I watched it twice, back to back. I laughed. I cried. She was speaking directly to me about my wonky relationship with housework.

I like having a clean home and folded laundry and fresh veggies nicely  organized in the fridge – but I dread doing what I need to do to make all those things happen. And I clearly prefer to do things I love doing rather than staring down unfinished care tasks.

Listening to KC’s podcast called Struggle Care was an eye-opener. A listener named Maria, for example, wondered if her extreme dread of  housework might be linked to being raised by a parent who was impossibly demanding about housekeeping standards, adding: “Our house looked like a museum. My mother would lose her mind if she found a fork left in the sink!”

While my own mother never lost her mind over a fork, she was relentlessly critical. And her kids did significant housework at uncommonly young ages – from scrubbing floors on our hands and knees to cooking full dinners for our family of seven by age 13. But we learned early on that whatever we did wasn’t quite right, whatever we cleaned was not cleaned properly, and no matter how many tasks we completed, we hadn’t finished enough of them.

That podcast reminded me that my definition of what a “properly cleaned” home looks like is deeply enmeshed in unrealistic expectations. And my own mother had been raised in abject poverty, one of 12 children living in a 2-room prairie farmhouse. I now wonder if that’s why she grew up so focused on clean-clean-clean.

Expectations didn’t change just because I became an adult, moved to the west coast, and had my own home and children. During one of her annual visits, my mother asked me – out of the blue – what brand of window cleaner I used. My heart sank. I knew this wasn’t a question about shopping preference. I knew she must have noticed something that needed correcting. Sure enough, she announced:

“Your windows may LOOK clean, but if you get really close, they are FILTHY!”

And that’s when I lost MY mind.

“They LOOK clean?”  I snapped at her. “THEY LOOK CLEAN!?!? That’s all that most people want from their window cleaner! They just want their windows to LOOK CLEAN!”

This was the first time ever that I’d interrupted one of my mother’s lectures about what I was doing wrong.  My uncharacteristic outburst was uncomfortable for both of us at the time. I felt guilty for snarling at my mother, yet somehow relieved that I’d finally spoken up. She felt hurt that her eldest daughter would dare speak to her like that.  I must say, however, that she made a genuine effort afterwards to watch her words. She began saying instead: “Oh! Is THAT the way you do it?” when observing me – which has now become an ongoing family joke between me and my sibs.

Fast forward to current events:  the other day I sorted out the trunk of my car. I’d been meaning to do this since 2017.  I wish I were the kind of person who drives around with a clean, empty trunk like so many people do – but clearly I am NOT.  (I did, however, find a baby stroller and a favourite umbrella in there that I thought I’d lost!)

I could add here that this care task dread is complicated by living with daily bouts of crushing fatigue, chest pain and other symptoms of coronary microvascular angina. These excuses can come in handy to explain the six years it took me to tackle that over-stuffed trunk. But my dread was evident long before my diagnosis.

Unless I’m expecting company (which I find both highly motivating and highly stressful), there is always something more important in my life than doing housework. But I also have grandkids now – so I believe they deserve a clean, safe place to play.

KC Davis tells us that a care task should be functional. She notes, for example, that new parents doing the laundry feel the need to neatly fold  infant onesies – which will probably require changing four times before lunch anyway. Folding a big pile of onesies does not apparently aid basic household function.

Also important: a care task doesn’t have to be totally complete before we can sit down. She suggests giving yourself permission to rest, even when things aren’t finished! What a concept – especially for people like me who somehow believe that once started on a big job, we must keep going until it’s perfect. No wonder I feel fatigued just thinking about starting a big job! KC breaks up the overwhelm by talking about what she calls closing duties:

“Closing duties are just a short list of things I complete every evening after my kids go to bed to make my kitchen functional the next morning.  After a few months of practicing it routinely, it became an automatic habit.

“Recently, I added ‘take my medication’ to my closing duties list. Bundling a task like taking medication with a routine you are already doing every day is a helpful way to bring taking your meds into the flow.”

I love KC’s perspective in her Six Pillars of Struggle Care for anybody  facing what she calls the “hard seasons of life”:

1. Care Tasks are Morally Neutral:  Being good or bad at them has nothing to do with being a good person, parent, man, woman, spouse, friend. Literally nothing. You are not a failure because you can’t keep up with laundry. Laundry is morally neutral.

2. Rest is a Right, not a Reward:  You do not have to earn the right to rest, connect or recreate. Unlearn the idea that “chores” (aka care tasks) must be totally complete before you can sit down. Care tasks are a never-ending list and if you wait until everything is done to rest, you will never rest.

3. You Deserve Kindness Regardless of Your Level of Functioning:  So much of our distress comes not from the unfolded laundry but from the messages we give ourselves. Lazy. Failure. Unlovable. You do not need to be good at care tasks to learn how to develop a compassionate inner dialogue. You deserve kindness and love regardless of how good you are at care tasks. Challenging these critical message you give yourself will go a long way in relieving your distress.

4. You Can’t Save the Rainforest if You’re Depressed:  You are not responsible for saving the world if you are struggling to save yourself. If you must use paper plates for meals or throw away recycling in order to gain better functioning, you should do so. When you are healthy and happy, you will gain the capacity to do real good for the world. In the meantime, your job is to survive.

5. Shame is the Enemy of Functioning:   Shame is a horrible long-term motivator. Most of the time, it is paralyzing, compounding the barriers one already has to completing care tasks. This sets up a cycle where the uncompleted task creates shame, which in turn saps motivation and energy, pushing one only to avoid the task altogether. Even if we do manage to shame ourselves into action, we find that those who work in shame also rest in shame. Instead of relief, taking a break only brings feelings of guilt. Instead of doing care tasks out of a motivation of distress you can learn to do them out of a motivation of self-care. With compassionate inner dialogue and gentle skill building you can begin to create and enjoy a worthwhile life.

6. Good Enough is Perfect:  Throw away what you think care tasks “should” look like and work towards a way of doing them that works for YOU. The goal is not to do them to Martha Stewart’s standards. You should be aiming for good enough.  The extra energy to move from good enough to #Instagram could be better spent on something that really matters. That is why we don’t say “good enough is good enough”  but instead “good enough is perfect.”

KC Davis is also the author of the book, How to Keep House While Drowning  and the creator of DomesticBlisters videos on TikTok.

Q:   Have you considered the concept of “good enough is perfect” since your diagnosis?


NOTE FROM CAROLYN:   I wrote more on making life easier for heart patients in my book, A Woman’s Guide to Living With Heart Disease (Johns Hopkins University Press). You can ask for it at your local bookshop, or order it online (paperback, hardcover or e-book) at Amazon – or order it directly from my publisher, Johns Hopkins University Press (use their code HTWN to save 30% off the list price).

38 thoughts on “Struggle care: a new way to rethink housework

  1. Carolyn, I loved reading this and all the comments from others!

    I can totally relate to growing up in a house where the expectations were high for everything to be clean and tidy and “in its place”.

    I remember one Christmas my mom giving me a decorated basket of cleaning supplies including white gloves and silver polish and some other cleaners. She and everyone else thought it was funny, but deep down I felt really hurt and couldn’t see the humour.

    I think I developed the “Can’t Have Anyone Over Syndrome” as a young adult because I always thought my home wasn’t tidy enough! So I hated it when someone just dropped in or if planned guests showed up too early! Funny how hard we can be on ourselves – maybe my guests didn’t even notice what I thought was too untidy.

    The morning I had my heart attack I remember thinking that the paramedics will notice things not being put away. That sounds so silly thinking about it now. One of the nurses mentioned that the paramedic had made a note on my file that our house was immaculate. That made me laugh. I would have never used that term about my house.

    Since then I’m trying to work on “good enough is perfect”. In addition to the inside of my home, it also extends to my garden as spring approaches. I look outside and think I should be starting to do stuff but I know I shouldn’t be doing anything too strenuous just yet. I like the term “closing duties” and have a bit of a routine around those as well as “opening duties” each morning. And I’m learning it’s okay to start something, and sit down and rest and finish it later.

    I’m a work in progress. . .transitioning out of perfectionist tendencies takes a lot of work.

    Oh and you’ve got me thinking – when was the last time I cleaned out my car trunk? 🙂

    Stay well!

    Kathleen 🙂


    1. Hello Kathleen – I too LOVED reading all the reader comments in response to this post! Everybody seemed to have such nostalgic memories (bad or good!) about their own childhood homes.

      Your “white gloves and silver polish” Christmas gift story is a good one! Similar to Jill’s story (below) of her housework gift!

      Had you been a child who really loved seeing tarnished silverware shine up with a little polish that would have been a thoughtful gift – but honestly?! I suspect that parents must think this gift idea FOR GIRLS is cute. I wonder how many little boys got that gift for Christmas!?! Nope, boys most likely got what they really really wanted from Santa!

      I’m so glad you mentioned garden work as being another pressure to be “perfect” too. My son and daughter-in-law bought their first home two years ago after many years of apartment living, and are amazed at how fast grass grows in the front lawn (they live on a nice street of homes with neatly mowed lawns!)

      I know a family who decided to dig up their front lawn for environmental reasons – lawns are really awful at water consumption. Instead, they planted wildflower seeds. When the wildflower garden started to explode, they got so many complaints from their neighbours (who all had *perfect* manicured lawns and tidy gardens) that they put a big sign out on the front yard explaining what a wildflower garden was! But you’d think they’d parked a rusty pickup truck out there!

      By the way, I love that paramedic who charted that your house was “immaculate”! See? I knew that paramedics notice details like that!! 😉

      Take care, thanks for sharing those memories – I’ll never look at silver polish without thinking of your story from now on!! ♥


  2. My mom was that person that did spring and fall cleaning every room, wall, and inch of the house. I have 2 sisters and non of use are crazy cleaners. I do love clean windows, but since my open heart they are not so clean.

    I clean and do all my laundry on Saturday or Sunday. Work till it’s done, then I don’t have to worry about it all week. My husband was raised in a home with 2 older sisters and an Italian mother. He did not raise a finger and still does not, so when he goes to say something about the house, I just give him the raised eyebrows.

    I do try to pick up each night and make the bed each morning which does not always happen cuz I sometimes need that extra 10-15-20-30 minutes of sleep before work LOL.. Good thing I had a good night’s sleep the other night cuz my husband went off to the hospital by ambulance, he was in the bedroom on a made bed – Thank God…..

    Loved the article Carolyn. And all the comments.


    1. Hello Susan – first, I’m sorry about your husband going to the hospital! I sure hope he’s doing better now. As you say, at least the paramedics found him on a neatly made bed! 😉

      I too make the bed every day – if the bed’s not made, does it matter how tidy the rest of the room is, really? I can hear my mother’s voice right now. . .

      But years ago, I had a neighbour who had grown up in Germany; in the summertime, she never made the bed – instead she took all the bedding outside and aired it out on the clothes line for the day.

      Any hubby who does “not lift a finger” around the house has officially abdicated his right to ever say even one tiny word about how the house looks! Your husband reminds me of my brothers (except with a Ukrainian mother and THREE older sisters) who were raised to believe that housework was somehow beneath them.

      My mother too did the big spring and fall top to bottom total clean! I remember washing walls, climbing up a big step ladder! AND she also moved the living room furniture around each cleaning weekend, so we had a summer room layout and a winter room layout!

      So glad you enjoyed this post – I too LOVE the reader comments (so funny, so wise!) It seems many have been inspired to take a nostalgic trip down memory lane.

      Take care, stay safe. . . ♥


      1. Hi Carolyn —
        One more thing we have in common: Ukrainian heritage. Both sets of my grandparents were immigrants (who did not know one another before coming to the US).
        The “men don’t have to do housework” rule stood in my family, too.
        Hugs, Gloria (Grandparents called me “Slavka,” which I detested.)


        1. Hello Gloria! Both sets of my own grandparents were also immigrants who came to Canada because of the promise of free land (160 acres of rocks and forest they had to clear to start farming, living in a sod hut for the first year – a very very hard life by all accounts!)

          These days we’re now seeing a lot of the word Slavka (or Slava) (which means ‘glory’ of course) around support of Ukraine during the attack from Russian troops e.g. “Slava Ukraini!”
          I wonder if you would have detested your name had you known it was so linked with national pride!?

          Take care . . .♥


  3. Pingback: H2H
  4. Oh Carolyn. Very funny to read your story and the ones of your readers.

    I am happy that our mother was not a good housekeeper. We were 5 children and she was a housewife. The oldest, my twin sister and me, were born in 1946 and she was 21 years old. After 8 years, we got a sister and two brothers. So at age eight, we had to clean the house when an aunt came to visit us. Our mother used to say: “It is the the shame of daughters when the house is not clean”. We were brave.

    Having married a German man and lived over 50 years in Germany, I have learned how a good housekeeping has to be. My mother-in-law always said, “Look at your brother in law and her housekeeping. You can open every cupboard without shaming.”

    It is not so in the rooms of my own and never will be. Order in the house is here a law. Even the pavement in front of the house has to be clean.

    Nowadays everybody forgives me. I have had heart disease 37 years. Three bypasses and several stents. My exemplary brother-in-law does not invite us any more, because his wife cannot bake a wonderful cake (which she did perfect) herself any more. Perhaps her house also is not in order. I do not know.

    My brother is coming from Finland to visit us. I have baked a cake, but for supper we have to go to a restaurant. It’s too much for me to make a perfect dinner.

    Carolyn, I had in June last year a cardiac arrest, as they were doing cardiac catheter. They revived me. I opened my eyes and said: Where am I? As I saw all the doctors and nurses, I remembered immediately, what happened. I had said now I am getting an arrhythmia. I had cracked breastbones but all ok after 2 months.

    All the best for you, Carolyn.



    1. Hello Mirjami – first, I’m so sorry to hear of your cardiac arrest! Your amazing little heart is a miracle, surviving one emergency after another all these years!! I do hope that will be the last cardiac drama for you so you can just enjoy life (and going out to restaurants!)

      “Shame” is such an unfortunate word, isn’t it? And to be shamed for not being a “good” housekeeper – of all things! – is especially sad.

      Interesting that you mention cleaning the pavement in front of the house: I have family living in Brussels, and during my trips to Europe, I have often slowed down to observe the frequent sight of women in the very early hours of the morning not just sweeping their front steps and sidewalks, but on their hands and knees scrubbing with sturdy scrub brushes. I’ve never in my life seen that sight here in Canada! 🙂

      Take care, my dear Mirjami and stay safe. . . ♥


      1. As to the washing of sidewalks, my employer would pressure wash the sidewalk fronting his store in the 1970’s. It was common to see every sidewalk swept and cleaned. City Street cleaners would clean the downtown streets on Sunday mornings. And the city would repair the city sidewalks.

        Somehow, society now considers cleaning to be someone else’s responsibility.


        1. I wonder if clean pressure-washed sidewalks are also like the “broken window” theory: that old buildings with broken windows attract more damage, more graffiti, etc.

          Does walking down a clean sidewalk help keep sidewalks cleaner (i.e. less likely to see piles of litter, for example?) My friends who lived in Beijing for many years described the public practice of pedestrians tossing cigarette packs, food wrappers and other trash directly onto the sidewalk behind them as they walked, leaving piles of garbage everywhere all day – knowing that at night, an army of city workers would emerge to sweep up after them. And during a trip to Paris, I read that pedestrians will step in dog poop every 200 steps in that city (an odd tourism statistic!) Residents in both cities appear to believe that picking up after their dogs or picking up their own trash is somebody else’s problem, not theirs. !!


      1. Yes and it can take a lifetime to learn to ignore the critical (often inner) voice(s) because good enough *is* good enough.

        I’ve just given my bathrooms their first proper clean since Christmas. In between I’ve wiped surfaces and that was enough until this week when I looked at them and thought they need a proper clean.

        ‘Good enough’ is a term I used to use a lot in my professional life. It takes the pressure off


        1. I too often use the word “proper” to describe any cleaning that’s more than a quick wipe-down. That implies that there’s an “improper” way to do housework! I think I’ve always judged the state of my own home as basically NOT properly clean (especially when in a frenzy of last-minute picking up/cleaning at the threat of incoming visitors!)

          But the other thing I often notice is how quickly such jobs actually get done – all that self-judgement for nothing! ♥

          Liked by 1 person

  5. I connect with all those women whose mothers were super home-makers, always cleaning and whose homes were spotless all the time, visitors or not.

    My house-cleaning was never enough or done right. I got that message when my Christmas present one year was a mini-vac, and a carpet sweeper another year. Now that I have chronic fatigue syndrome and angina, housekeeping gets swept under the carpet, so to speak.

    Certainly relate to the “peer pressure from dead people”! It also doesn’t help that my husband is a hoarder and I am feeling very overwhelmed at present. I really needed this post today.

    Thanks so much, it helps a lot.


    1. Hello Susan – those Christmas presents were probably advertised in the Christmas catalogues as “ideal gifts”! (Having said that, I know women who have ASKED Santa for a new vacuum!)

      My hubby decided one year that a new belt sander would be the ideal gift for me – still not sure what the meaning of that gift was (maybe that I should start furniture refinishing?)

      Living with a hoarder is indeed overwhelming! You can only do what you can do – but that might include claiming at least one place in the house that’s just your own special retreat (no husbands allowed) so that you can create a place of calm and peace.

      Take care, stay safe. . . ♥


      1. My mother also gave a carpet sweeper to her new daughter-in-law, who was not at all amused and responded the following Christmas by gifting mom with a corset!

        I don’t need any vacuums now – we have 15 in the house thanks to my husband…


          1. Fortunately, it did not erupt into a family feud – mom was of course offended by the gift but never figured out why the corset was given until the in-law became an ex, and I enlightened her (lol).


    1. Hi Pauline – I’m sorry about that font. I used to be able to change font colour (from grey to black, which I did for years) but WordPress (my blog host) has “updated” their system and I’m now no longer able to do that. I’ve reported this problem to WordPress and am hoping they will respond!!


  6. Yikes! Yes, we all had the same mother, didn’t we?

    With mine it was: “If a thing is worth doing, it’s worth doing well” and finishing what you started was also high on the list.

    When I first got together with my now-husband I became nearly infuriated when he would do a little something, sit down for a rest, and complete the task later, maybe even the next day, while I bustled around getting everything done TODAY.

    Now I take three or four days, slowly but surely, to do the cleaning before people come over. Having doors that close are very handy too.

    Here’s a funny thing: when my mother died, I was thousands of miles away. The day I heard the news I cleaned the house from stem to stern.


    1. Hello Deborah – Wow! I can imagine that the intensive cleaning spree after you learned of your Mum’s death must have been like therapy for you. There is something so satisfying (albeit exhausting) about doing a major clean from top to bottom! I bet you collapsed in a heap when you were finally done.

      Did you used to be married to my hubby? This was exactly what he would do, too: great starter, not so great at finishing. He’d start a project today, but then inevitably something else would distract him for a day or two before he was ready to resume. Meanwhile, messy piles of taken-apart stuff all over.

      Your story reminds me of the annual Saanich Fair which actually has a unique category in the Textile Arts competition called “Unfinished Projects” (half-done knitted scarves, partially completed baby quilts, embroidered still life art that was doing well until the needleworker lost interest in doing the boring monochrome background, etc)

      And YES: doors that close (room doors, cupboard doors, all doors!) = the secret to happiness!

      Take care, stay safe. . . ♥


  7. Get yourselves a couple bars of sex wax and place them as you wish. No one will notice anything but the sex wax. Judging people will judge; give them some direction!

    My mother-in-law was a wonderful homemaker. I scrubbed the house before each visit. She was overwhelmed when her eyes found the sex wax. I tried to explain it was to be used on the surfboards. She blushed. I lost it and pointed out her smutty mind. We both ended up sitting on the floor laughing our heads off.

    Second bar in the car console. Not one of my coworkers surf. Very quiet drive. No one mentioned the muddy dog. They list it over the sex wax though. Legendary.


    1. Anne! I’m laughing out loud at your sex wax recommendation!

      For those not in the know, “Mr. Zog’s Sex Wax” has been around since the 70s, originally marketed as a wax for surfboards.

      Here in Canada, we know it best for its use on hockey sticks.

      According to Mr. Zog, “Naming the product ‘Sex Wax’ has led to some hilarious misunderstandings, some great stories, and some amazing letters from satisfied but confused customers…”

      Just think of the hours we could save on doing housework if we all followed your suggestion.

      I’m putting a bar in my trunk . . .

      Take care, thanks for a good laugh! ♥


  8. It seems we all had the same mother!

    I was in charge of cleaning the bathroom every Saturday when I was 7 years old. For a Christmas present one year I got a wooden carrier, painted turquoise with brand new bathroom cleaning tools. It even had my name in cursive with little red hearts painted on the side. LOL

    My mother had a saying “Good, Better, Best never let it rest until your good is better and your better is Best.” I can remember in the throes of cardiac fatigue the words “…Never let it rest…Never let it rest..Never let it rest!” echoing in my brain.

    It has taken me a decade to be okay sitting down when my HR goes over 100.

    I love walking at the Botanic Gardens because they have benches every 50 feet.

    As for housework, I love the plaque my friend has by her front door.

    “If you have come to see me, Welcome!
    If you have come to see my house, make an appointment.”


    1. Oh Jill. . . That Christmas present says so much, doesn’t it? Your Mum probably thought this would be a darling accessory for her cute little cleaning lady! (Not that it’s ever wrong to expect kids to participate in household tasks, of course – as long as parents don’t yell at them while they’re scrubbing that bathroom!)

      I used to pay our little Ben (about the same age, 7ish) 25 cents to scrub bird poop off the whole back sundeck, with a big bucket of soapy water and a wooden scrub brush. He was thrilled with his income because it added to his Saturday candy fund. (I like to think his poop-scrubbing made him a more responsible person, but maybe I just traumatized him into a dread of cleaning off his own deck someday!?) 🙂

      Your friend’s plaque – SO brilliant!! It reminds me of a little poem about priorities for new Mums with newborns that I read decades ago:

      “Settle down, cobwebs and dust, go to sleep
      I’m rocking my baby – and babies don’t keep!”

      ♥ ♥ ♥


  9. Wow. First of all, I think Maria must be my sibling because I had the same mother.

    Spot on for me this very morning. My daughter is coming in two days to help me through surgery. So I thought I’d better get groceries, clean the car, etc. Nope. Maybe I better rest and acknowledge that staying busy is just a mask for anxiety and I’m actually tired. A version of, “Don’t worry about me, I got this.”

    A writer friend recently shared this line: “Peer pressure from dead people.” My daughter is coming, not my mother. My very capable, compassionate 46 year old daughter.

    This blog is so helpful. Thank you Carolyn.


    1. Hooooo Boy! I love your friend’s line “Peer pressure from dead people!” Isn’t that the TRUTH?!? That kind of pressure has been basically running my life!

      And “Don’t worry about me – I got this!” could be embroidered on all my pillows by now. Sheeeesh. . .

      Thank you for sharing those unique perspectives, Sara. Enjoy your visit with your “capable, compassionate 46-year old daughter” – and most importantly, good luck with your surgery.

      Take care, stay safe. . . ♥


  10. Thank you for posting this, and for the link to KC’s TedTalk! Although at 78 I’m at the far end of the age spectrum, and am dealing with a different heart problem than yours, I’ve also been feeling increasingly overwhelmed.

    I was in my 60s when I finally came across Marla Cilley’s wonderful website, (FLY stands for Finally Loving Yourself) and learned how to keep house.

    Although I have some good routines in place now, and my house no longer suffers from C.H.A.O.S. (Can’t Have Anybody Over Syndrome), the heart condition is emotionally and physically exhausting. The meds have unpleasant (and dangerous) side-effects, and the ablation seems not to have done very much.

    But since I’m not as bad off as so many other people, I’ve not allowed myself to say, “I’m having a hard time,” whenever well-meaning people ask me how I am. Until KC, I hadn’t even put that sentence together!

    But at this particular time in my life, it’s true, and I’m going to allow myself to use it as a reply when necessary, WITHOUT cursing myself as a failure.

    It’s a baby step, but it feels like one that will take me in the right direction.
    With gratitude,


    1. Hi Gloria -thanks so much for telling us about I just checked out her site (and her book The C.H.A.O.S. Cure).

      I can sure relate to her “Can’t Have Anybody Over” Syndrome – which reminds me that I’ve been “meaning” to invite my new next-door neighbour over for coffee (as soon as I get the place tidied up, of course!!!) 😉

      I love how the author includes “shining your sink” as one of her three bedtime rituals, right up there with “Go to bed at a decent hour!” There’s just something about a shiny sink that lifts the spirit!

      Speaking of shining, Gloria, you are a shining example that we are never too old to learn something new – in your case, that it is okay to say “I’m having a hard time” when you need help.

      Take care, stay safe. . . ♥


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