You read the title right. A 23-year-old is just now doing her laundry for the first time. Before I get into the story I just want to say that I do understand how much of a privilege this is.
Laundry is such a basic necessity. So one would think, right? Well, I’ve managed to get by 23 years without ever doing laundry once. That is until now at least. Before I moved out on my own, I lived with my mom my whole life. I was the youngest of 5 (I mean like wayyy young) so my mom and I were pretty close and still are. She held me tight for as long as possible. If my mom could do things for all her kids she probably would but they were all doing their own thing. I was a pretty busy high school student so I wasn’t worried about learning how to do laundry. I just needed my laundry. I knew once I hit college and still didn’t know how to do laundry it was probably an issue. I think I asked my mom about it one time and then never asked again because I still never had to worry about it.
When I got pregnant I started to worry how great my maternal skills were going to be if I didn’t even know how to wash clothes. Would my son have piles of half-assed washed clothes? What was I going to do? I started watching my mom closely while she washed clothes. I asked questions and even took down some notes. All I needed now was to actually do was the laundry. I made it as far as kinda sorting the clothes but never getting past that. My mom enjoyed the tiny clothing. Who wouldn’t? I fell back into that routine of letting my mom wash the clothes but this time it was for 2 people. She enjoyed it so I continued to let her.
The real panic began when I found out I’d be moving out on my own. For the first time, I wouldn’t have my mom to do my laundry. I skipped the emotions and went right to the web to try and find laundry tips. I got a couple of hits on google but I’m a visual person so I went for the youtube videos. I also looked to Pinterest for some helpful pins.
I put all of what I learned online with what I’ve seen my mom do and felt pretty set for when I moved. The apartment complex we moved to came with a washer and dryer room. That excited me because at least if I were to make any newbie laundry mistakes it would sorta be in private (I guess). My mom continued to do our laundry while we got settled in. I was so appreciative of her generosity. Several weeks passed by and she was still offering to do our laundry. I finally was settled in our new home and was excited for my first batch of laundry on my own. On my way to the laundry room, I noticed that one of my neighbors was looking at me funny. Like he had something to tell me but he didn’t know how to. I waved hello in hopes he’ll spit something out and he did. He told me that using the complex laundry units might be a mistake and that it was very sketchy in there. I didn’t think twice about it. I just thanked him for telling me and turned around. Looks like we’ll have to find a laundromat. I told my mom the news and she didn’t even hesitate before telling me to just bring them to her. “Save your money and just let me do it!” she said. She had a point so I didn’t fight her on it.
I brought over my laundry as frequently as I needed to. Sometimes It’d take longer than usual because I’d be too lazy to take the drive or the washer and dryer was occupied by someone else. No big deal, I usually have enough clothes to hold it down. Oops, not this time. I hadn’t realized that my hamper was getting taller and taller especially with the recent snowstorms we had that restricted travel. I was just enjoying my “snow days”. I was enjoying my snow days a little too much that I totally forgot that my aunt Flo was coming to visit shortly. I hadn’t had my laundry done in so long. What was I to do? I called my mom asking last minute if she can do them but unfortunately she couldn’t. It was so last minute so I didn’t have high expectations. I was honestly excited that she couldn’t. It was finally my chance to do my own laundry.
My boyfriend laughed at me as I happily sorted the clothes and asked him a ton of laundry questions that I needed some reassurance on. Just like many others, he couldn’t believe that I had never done laundry before. I didn’t have any laundry products in my name. It was all new for me. I was running short of time so I just headed to Walmart. They have everything. They’re a one-stop-shop. I got everything I needed including a cute reusable bag to hold the products in. My bag included:
- Detergents for myself and Isaiah
- Clorox disinfectant wipes
- Bleach for white clothes
- Fabric softener
After I had my products, I felt unstoppable. I was more than ready to wash clothes. I went to the coin machine and got my 20 dollars worth of quarters. I picked out my machines and followed the directions on them before putting any money in them. At that moment I couldn’t believe I was doing something so awesome even though it was so simple. One of the machines I was using was 2.75 in quarters. One of my quarters wasn’t going in so I’d pick new ones before reaching that same one again. It wouldn’t work. I was so confused as to why the machine wasn’t taking some of my quarters. I ended up taking out my clothes and switching machines losing out on change. The same problem would happen in the next machine and so on. I decided to ask a kind man folding his clothes to come and take a look. It’s a good thing I asked him because he realized that the machine gave me Canadian coins. No one was working at that late hour so there was no one I could talk to about it and I was too tired to call and do anything extra. I just put the Canadian coins in my purse.
I brought my laptop and a book to keep me occupied but I didn’t use them at all. I didn’t have time to. Between figuring out how to use the machines, picking out Canadian coins, and tons of folding, I spent hours at the laundromat. Every single second and every single minute of those hours were worth it because I did something everyone should probably have done by now. I was so proud of myself. While I was praising myself my mom was trying to hold back tears. I didn’t realize as a parent how good it feels to do simple things for your kids. My mom explained to me that doing our laundry is a way of keeping us connected and it also gives her a reason to keep busy during these times. I’m not complaining because she has been saving me so much time. Boy, laundry is so exhausting.
I can do my own laundry now but I’m pretty sure I still won’t. It’s nice to have the reassurance that when my mom is no longer able to, I can do our laundry on our own. This is a milestone for me! Thanks for listening to me ramble. Remain safe, everyone! 💗
As always, thanks so much for reading! Questions, comments, and feedback are always welcome. If you enjoyed this post, please comment, like and share! Make sure to check out my Instagram; @tianiangela_ and my latest video on YouTube💋