Life is Like Laundry

I bought a sign for my laundry area at the dollar store recently that reads, “Laundry, sorting out life one load at a time.”  It just spoke to me so I didn’t think twice about grabbing it.  Words of wisdom found at the dollar store!  Hooray!  Laundry truly is a lot like life, isn’t it?  

Don’t we all have many loads at a time to deal with, whether it be laundry or life’s burdens? Don’t we sometimes feel like “throwing in the towel”? (Which would just create more laundry.)

Perhaps sometimes we feel like we are on the spin cycle.  Everything is too much.  We feel like we are getting tossed about, everything moving too fast.  Our lives and minds spinning out of control.  Where is the stop button??  Pull out the plug! 

We have all had times like that.  I feel dizzy just thinking about it.

In life, as with laundry, we have to sort things out.  There are decisions to be made.  Big things like where to work, where to live, how to treat an illness, as well as all the little things on our to-do list, such as what to make for dinner.  So it is with laundry, we must sort the colors or they bleed and we end up with a big, ugly mess, a heap of ruin.  Not looking at all like what we had wanted or hoped.

Mom Moment when
college kids return
home for Christmas.

We wash one load at a time and then it is clean (and maybe put away) but there will always be another load to take its place.  One thing you can be sure of, laundry is certain to pile up again, a healthy sign of life lived.  Laundry doesn’t disappoint, it always returns, like a dear and loyal friend. 

My son played baseball for many years.  I would dread washing his baseball uniform as there were always grass stains to deal with.  I had to find the right stain remover and scrub and scrub and hope for the best.  Life, too, will stain us.  We need to try to scrub away our bad habits and failings. As humans, we all carry the stain of sin.  But Jesus, our Savior, has bled for us and will wash us clean if we ask.  “If we acknowledge our sins, He is faithful and just, and will forgive our sins and cleanse us from every wrong-doing.”  (I John 1:9)

Picture the laundry rinse cycle or standing in a refreshing downpour, drenching us and cleansing us.  I have a Precious Moments picture I stitched in my bathroom that says, “He cleansed my soul”.   O how sweet it is.  “Have mercy on me, O God, according to your unfailing love; according to your great compassion blot out my transgressions.  Wash away all my iniquity and cleanse me from my sin.”  (Psalm 51:1-2)  Also words the priest prays during Catholic mass.

Laundry also has to get hung up or dried.  Life often hangs us up. Time passes, clothes become out of style or worn and so do we.  We get wrinkled, physically and figuratively.  We may have to iron out the wrinkles now and then.  Hopefully we won’t get put away like the clothes, or left in a forgotten heap.  

Personally, I don’t mind doing laundry.  Menial tasks are the stuff of ordinary life with their own rhythm and flow.  Plus they are great procrastination tools.   Nothing like vacuuming when I am putting off something else.  But I must admit I was glad when all of my kids were away at college doing their own laundry.  Sorting out the fabric and colors of their own lives.  It is no longer my job. 

In doing a bit of research on laundry, I came across a business called “Life Without Laundry”.   At the top of the website they ask, “Can you imagine a Life Without Laundry?” and then they list services for pick up, delivery, etc. so that you don’t ever have to do your own laundry.

My answer to that is “no thank you”!  I can’t imagine a life without laundry. 

I prefer not to hand over my dirty laundry to someone else.  I will deal with my own loads and relish every minute.  The dirty and the clean.  The wet and the wrinkled.  It is part of my cleansing journey.  It is my load to carry and mine alone.  No one else knows how to sort out the fabric of my life. 

So my advice is to appreciate those loads of laundry piling up, for you never know what treasures you may find.  People have been known to find money in their pockets they have forgotten about. My son once got a new phone because I washed and ruined the one he left in his pants pocket!

I think I will go hunt down some laundry now!  What about you?


Here’s a snippet of inspo I found along the way:

https://www.loyolapress.com/catholic-resources/liturgical-year/lent/ash-wednesday/life-laundry/

Wait!  There’s more!  Here are some tips for your laundry day pleasure!

https://tide.com/en-us/how-to-wash-clothes/how-to-remove-stains

https://assets.ctfassets.net/ajjw8wywicb3/1nid5bL6SmTJiy0ACpJZ9c/66ab4c2f45f25d8e5171c90205f79cb0/Tide-Your-Guide-to-Decoding-Laundry-Symbols.pdf

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