Wednesday, August 03, 2011

The Surprise Laundry Toss~

At some point during my childhood, Mom gave up on laundry baskets and delivered any and all dirty clothing directly to the surfaces of the washer or dryer. The front door of her current house faces the garage entrance, across a small courtyard. The laundry is done in the garage.

For the past 20 years, Mom opened the front door and tossed her laundry onto the porch, until the good time for laundry presented itself. Mind you, this is not a whole load of clothes. This would be what she wore to bed the night before, some under garments, and maybe a towel or two. Mom has an obsession about laundry. We used to think it was a quirk, but now we call it by its rightful name. She goes through a bottle of laundry detergent in a week, often washing a "load" of clothes that equal one pair of pajama bottoms and a wash cloth.

Sue and I started staying with Mom to help care for her in early June. Our first clue about a laundry issue was the lack of laundry baskets - anywhere. Our own laundry had to be washed out in the tub because Mom swore there was never any room for our stuff - especially the clothes we wore for exercise. (Mom doesn't sweat, so she fails to understand why anybody else does.)

Mom often chooses to toss out the morning laundry while naked. This is because every single stitch of clothing that needs to be washed has to be tossed out the minute it is removed from the body. Soiled laundry on the floor is akin to Big Macs in a Hindu temple. But I digress.

We have attempted to speak to her about this lack of modesty which, for us, is really nothing new. We spent half our childhoods shielding our eyes and dying from the embarrassment of a naked mother carrying laundry around the house. Our concerns are laughed off because, as Mom puts it, she has no modesty anymore. (Ever?)

This morning, as she flung open the door to toss the few pieces of laundry, she was met by a shocked and horrified pharmacy deliveryman. Sue heard him gasping, "Sorry! So sorry!" repeatedly. She dropped breakfast preparations and ran from the kitchen to shield our naked mother and sign for the package.

The deliveryman didn't want to stay for a signature, running off with more apologies.

We hope the poor guy won't need some kind of therapy down the road.