Wednesday, December 2, 2009

Uncovering the Laundry Thief

For years, I have had the misfortune of being the victim of a laundry thief. I have lost countless shirts, pants and many other items and never could figure out where they went. When my kids arrived, this thief seemed to strike even more and while I blamed all the missing socks on the washing machine, I began to suspect that there was more foul play than I wanted to admit.

Finally, after all these years, I have discovered the identity of the laundry thief. It was heart wrenching to uncover him and I have to believe that it was not done with any thought towards wrongdoing.

of course, the discovery came after several of my shirts went missing. Then a few days later, my oldest son's favorite t-shirt had gone AWOL. It was such a cute shirt, with a sad tree and monkeys on it and the words "Homework Kills Trees. Stop the Madness!"

At first I did what every mother would do. I looked at my 8 year old and said, "Okay, where did you stuff it?"

I was positive that his excuses of putting it in the clothes hamper was just that, excuses, but after searching every nook and cranny in the room, every book shelf, every toy box and even extending the search to his brother's room, closet and dresser, there was no sign of the shirt. I sighed and said, "Did you take it off at school for some unknown reason?"

That last ditch effort to find it only resulted in rolled eyes and a "Yeah, sure mom. Like I'm going to take my shirt off there."

So we left it at that and I figured that the laundry thief had struck again.

And he had!

Just yesterday, as I was putting away laundry into my husband's dresser, I came across a shirt I had lost. "Oh ho," I exclaimed. (Okay, maybe I didn't say Oh Ho, since I'm not a pirate and I didn't really say anything but I did smile in triumph.)

After searching through all of his dresser drawers I uncovered a whole assortment of clothes. Mine, my 5 year old's and my oldest son's "Stop the Madness" shirt. I was perplexed at the find. I mean, my husband will often mix up the kids' clothes and I am constantly switching clothes back and forth between rooms but how could he think that the small sized shirt was his.

For that matter, how could he think the soft pink pajama top belonged to anyone else but me. Still, I sorted my treasures and set them back in their rightful places and then hunted down my laundry thief.

"You are never putting away laundry again," I exclaimed with triumph without even saying anything else.

He looked at me in confusion and asked, "Waht did I do?"

"You know what you did," I pointed an acussatory finger at him, "You keep putting the laundry away in the wrong places. I'm tired of fixing it."

He shakees his head, "Well, at least I put the laundry away. Some husbands don't even do that."

I spear him with my best disapproving look and say, "Yeah, but when you put it away like that, it doesn't help. Just don't touch it anymore."

"Fine, I won't," was the last remark before I walked away, proud of myself for finding the thief. And then it hits me; maybe I had been duped. Maybe all those years of missing laundry had been some nefarious plan and I had walked right into it. It had taken a while to wear me down but in one short afternoon, I had taken all the laundry onto my workload and told him not to touch it ever again.

And now, as I gain a little perspective, my victory doesn't feel as sweet as it did yesterday.

All the best and if you lose some laundry, look into your husband's dresser but don't, and I repeat don't, fall into the same trap I did.


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