I don’t believe in karma. Not really. Another perfectly viable way of explaining karma is to blame the victim – you deserve what happens to you, because you must have done something to deserve it. My philosophy (arrived at after decades of trying to figure it all out) is that sometimes crappy things happen for no reason at all, and that perspective matters.
That being said – there is an element of karma going on here – Sam is my punishment for never cleaning my room as a kid.
My boy, my beloved boy – is an absolute slob. He takes off his socks and wings them wherever he happens to be. He takes all the blankets in the house, brings them all into his room, creates forts on his loft bed and then shoves them all down on the floor. He strips the bed every.damn.time I make it, preferring to sleep on a bare mattress. And he’s actually managed to beat me down into being grateful that he sleeps on a bare mattress, instead of just on the hard floor, because that’s where he ends up more often than not.
Legos, books, minecraft figurines and cups – so, so, many cups. They’re all over his room. Granola bar wrappers, a half eaten bag of pretzel goldfish. Little pieces of paper, and scissors – because obviously at some point, he thought creating a whole bunch of tiny, tiny pieces of paper was a good use of his time.
I shovel it out once a week, if I can work up the energy. And always when he isn’t home, because if he’s here, I try to kill him. In theory, it’s his job to keep it clean, and if intentions mattered, it would be spotless. The reality is that he just doesn’t care all that much. He wants to clean it, because he truly does want to make me happy – but the reality is that he just doesn’t notice how it looks. Clean, dirty, cluttered, confused – he doesn’t care. It’s just his room, and he loves it all the time.
And so, I’m apologizing, publicly and sincerely, to my poor mother. Because I know damn well she felt the exact same way about my room. One of the things I hated the most, as a kid, was the dreaded bedroom cleanup day. My mother wanted to kill me. I know that. But now that I think about it – I remember stories of my grandfather literally sweeping the floor of her bedroom, clothes, toys, books, everything, into a giant trash bag. So maybe it’s not karma, but just a function of parenting. Either way, Mom, I’m sorry. And if you have some time later, maybe you could come by and help me clean Jessie’s room?