In May I chose to have my upstairs flooring replaced. It was an ordeal, to say the least, but it was also very necessary. I have learned that the girls and I are just not carpet people. We drop things left and right, and the result was a very stained, really stinky carpet. It had to go.
Now it is a nice light gray laminate wood floor. After two months to recover from the mess of the whole installation, I now can truly say that I love it. I look forward to loving it more once I get the wall color to match it. But for now, I am enjoying both the floor and the absence of the stress that carpet caused.
Part of the process for preparing for this new flooring opened my eyes to something I really had never thought about. In order to remove the flooring, I needed to remove all of the items on the floor upstairs. That is not a small number of items. The clutter was real. Especially in the playroom. Oh, that playroom. When I first bought the house, I had such visions of it being a retreat for the girls, somewhere they could have dedicated space to play. Little did I know that they would see the entire house as their dedicated space to play. The amount of time they spent in the playroom was minimal.
I hadn’t really thought much of it until the room was empty. Then the truth dawned on me: I have no space in the house that is actually just mine. And I own it!
The girls have their rooms, my room, my bathroom, their bathroom, the TV room, and all spaces in between. Even the dogs have their own room. Once I realized it, I knew that I could not let this stand. There and then I declared that I was reclaiming the playroom. Moving forward, it would be called Mama’s Lounge.
I set to work dreaming up my space. At first, I wanted an exercise room, then I wanted a space to relax, then I wanted a place that was airy with live plants. And then, I decided to do it all. All through the process, the girls were very curious. They wanted to know what I was doing and how they fit into it. Over and over, I reiterated the rules.
- Kids must be invited in.
- No toys allowed unless approved by mom. If approved, they must be cleaned out of the room upon exiting.
- No food eaten by kids.
- TV shows must be agreed upon. If they cannot be agreed upon, then what mom says goes.
- No dogs on the couch.
At first, I felt really mean. I worried that the girls wouldn’t understand why I was kicking them out. After all, we have always shared everything. But, I was too excited to turn back, and the girls played right along with my excitement. We even made a song about the rules that they sing from time to time.
All in all, the creation of Mama’s Lounge has worked out really well. I go there to work out and when I need some time to relax without questions being asked of me or YouTube videos blaring or siblings squabbling. And so far, all rules have been obeyed. It may just be the first room in my house I can keep clean. We’ll see. For now, it offers me space in every way possible.