I don’t have it! As I sit in my house today, washing stacked to the ceiling and so much to clean (oops I forgot to vacuum … AGAIN) I wonder how does the clean gene work?

Is it actually a little molecule floating around a body with a broomstick and mop in hand (does it have hands?)? Or a force that propels the clean freaks into action? My ‘clean’ philosophy is as long as the house is liveable and doesn’t make anyone sick, then it passes.

Of course I clean like a mad woman when people are coming over! The toilet gets a good scrubbing, I drrraagggg the heavy vacuum cleaner out of the ancient broom closet and give it a once over. The kids rooms are hardest to maintain as there’s always some little toys scattered amongst the furniture and rugs. So it takes a whole day to clean everything up in order to get the job done properly. I would say I don’t have time for this but that’s not exactly true. I just prefer to do other things like write, read and have coffee with people. Yep, I’m a people person, not a clean freak!

Now we get to the mopping section of cleaning process and I have a shameful admission to make. I haven’t properly mopped my wooden floors for years! I can’t actually remember. It’s ok because I know the kitchen floor is at least partly mopped. Every time my kids drop milk or slop yoghurt on the floor, I wipe it up with a damp cloth. That’s almost as good as mopping is it not?

The fact is that when I mop I look at the floor, sometimes on hands and knees with the lights on, to try and spot the difference. I love a good ‘before and after’ moment but mopping does not give me this!  And so I sulk and leave the mopping for emergencies only!

I must admit, I’m not all gross and domestically lazy. I actually enjoy washing clothes and putting them away. Partly because I don’t have a lot of clothes and hate running out of my favourite pieces and partly because my son goes to school and needs to wear a uniform and partly because it is satisfying. There is a clear before and after here. You can watch them waving in the wind to you on that cheery clothesline. It almost makes me want to wave back and say, “Good job, keep hanging, enjoy the sunshine.”

Is there a clean gene or is it only wishful thinking for those of us who are unmotivated to do the household chores? Do we, in fact, have the right priorities, being far happier spending time with people than those who love to slap on the gloves? I don’t think I’m lazy. You really can’t be as a mum and there are chores you simply have to do but if I had a choice between a cook, a cleaner and a nanny… I would choose the cleaner every time. What would you choose?