Where Legos Go to Die, Being a Working Parent, and Keeping the Playroom Door Closed

I need to be honest here. I am notorious for closing the door to the playroom and never looking back.

I mean, do you know what’s there?

Do you?

It’s a pile of Legos, six pieces of a puzzle that have lost their home, a torn superman cape, and other various toys that have been amputated and no longer have their dignity.

I have tried with all my might to get my six-year-old to clean his playroom. But when you’re a working mother of two, how do you find the time to teach a six-year-old how to clean? I mean, he says he cleans it but a six-year-old’s version of clean is pushing said Legos under the rug (and yes, they still hurt when they’re stepped on) and throwing broken toys into a box without sorting them first.

I end up closing the playroom door and never looking back because the shame is just too great.

How did I raise a child with no respect for the space he’s been given? How did I spoil him so much that he doesn’t understand the concept of putting those darling matchbox cars into their case right after he’s done with them? Where the heck did I go wrong in all of this?

I’ve wondered if being a working mom means being a slack parent. I know I can’t be the only one here.

I’ve seen the playrooms of my stay-at-home mom friends. There are colorful walls, unbroken toys, boxes full of the correct items. I mean, there’s probably sunshine and rainbows permanently flowing into the room from the windows.

How did I miss the memo on how to teach my child to keep the playroom clean when supermom over there is drinking her coffee and smiling at her daughter putting baby doll clothes back in the correct drawer of her dresser?

When I think back to being a child myself, I remember my mom staying home with us for the first part of my childhood. She was there to ensure my messes didn’t become the out-of-control tornado that I see in my son’s playroom. She had the time and energy to teach me toy A goes into box A, toy B goes into box B, and on and on.

How is a family of two working parents supposed to handle cleaning a playroom mess that takes 10 minutes to make and 2 hours to clean up?! Am I the only one wondering where to carve out extra time in my life for cleaning here?

I know my kid makes messes. I know I don’t have the time to teach him to clean right now. I’m sure every teacher he has ever had has explained the concept of cleaning. He does perfectly for them. For me? He gets away with closing the playroom door to the black hole.

I’m exhausted. I’m sorry. Motherhood is EXHAUSTING. I’m doing the best I can just making sure the kids are fed and clothed.

Don’t expect miracles right now – maybe when they’re older!

So if you’re coming over to play, please know that the playroom looks an awful lot like my brain: jumbled with lots of forgotten thoughts.

If you’ve recently been stepping over (or on) runaway Lego pieces or closing the door to the playroom when guests arrive please know you are not alone. Share with us in the comments how you cope, mama!



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One Response to Where Legos Go to Die, Being a Working Parent, and Keeping the Playroom Door Closed

  1. Avatar
    Martymor October 26, 2018 at 12:35 pm #

    Love this! I was starting to think I was alone. I’ve threatened to take the playroom away, locked the doors even, just for my kids to cover the floor again with chaos. No matter how much I give order to it (when I have the time and energy), they never stick to the system I create to keep it tidy. However, they’ve been in daycare and elementary for years – singing “Clean Up” songs & getting rewards for helping straighten up THOSE rooms, but won’t do the same for their own house. Now, I just keep the door closed as much as I can. I hate seeing it, and I dare not let guests either. Thank you for posting this! It was a joy to read!

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