Games I Play with Myself 7

The older I get, the harder it is for me to keep track of things. The games I use to help me might be especially useful to seniors,, but it’s even possible they might help younger people. As a widower of 1.5+ years, I have come up with these games only recently, so they might be especially useful for widowers.

If you’re a widower rich enough to hire a maid to replace your wife, don’t bother to read this. But on the outside chance you’re not that rich, or the even smaller odds you think you might enjoy housework, read on. Although I functioned as a bachelor for 9 months after being moved out of our house by my first wife and our marriage counselor, that wasn’t long enough to establish really good housewifely bachelor habits. Then Toni and I were together for 29 years.

I only recently got clear on how much I depended on my wife, even though she was non-functional for more than a year before she died. I’ve conned myself into really enjoying housework, and the more efficiently, easily, and quickly I get it done, the more I enjoy it. There’s so much else to enjoy, like getting back to my writing, or, or. ad infinitum. You can do the same kind of con job on yourself, should you want to. Or you could call it re-educating yourself, or…or…I just made myself a herbal tea. I wasn’t dependent on Toni for tea, or coffee, or service where I sat. Toni’s father was on Toni’s mother, so it’s a good thing he died first…Are you like him?

If so, taking care of yourself might seem an overwhelming job. It isn’t. I spend very little time keeping my large kitchen-dining room (15’x20′), living room the same size, a 6×8 entry, my bedroom and 2 bathrooms as neat and clean as I want them. I do have a cleaning lady once a month.

I don’t know the exact amount of time I spend on laundry, dishes, wiping up, making my bed, but it seems minimal. I do it all in passing, or when the impulse strikes me. I never do it if I don’t feel like it. That requires my paying attention, noticing, being in the here and now. Unless I notice that plate in the living room that belongs in the sink and pick it up as I walk past already going toward the kitchen, it’ll never get there. My standard for neat, much neater than the house was even before Toni became non-functional. Much of the time we had a lot of help after she became non-functional. But I didn’t to pick up after my wife. I hate to say it, but at some point Toni became and tolerated a messier house than I liked. Her daughter and other people have noticed the improvement.

I have also become a list maker, and at the same time an environmentalist. I do my lists on the back of envelopes I get in the mail when they’re blank. I’m saving paper, money, trees, the woods. I could call that being a cheapskate, but I prefer thinking of myself as a good environmentalist. My lists are very helpful in keeping track of what I’m doing, knowing what I’m doing. To what extent do you know what you’re doing? Check it out. I’m willing to bet you’ll find, as do I, that much of the time I’m not running me, old habits, both good and bad, are often in charge. I like the idea of my being in control, not being an automaton. How about you?

Let me know your findings should you do a bit of research on yourself. Be scientific and have some fun!

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