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With Mental Illness, the ‘Easier’ Tasks Are the Sometimes the Hardest

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Today, I put the laundry in the dryer.

Some tasks are harder than others. I imagine we can all agree on that — some tasks just take more oomph than others. I don’t know why that is since they are often some of the easier things to do.

Fill the dishwasher? Sure, but don’t make me empty it. I’d rather have a pile of dirty dishes.

Put the laundry in the washer? OK, if you can get it to the garage.

Put in the dryer before the mold sets in? You’d think that would be the easy part, but no, no, that’s hard.

Shower so we don’t stink? Only in a perfect set of circumstances with moons aligning and comets kissing.

Sweep? No thank you, I don’t mind the extra cat.

Dust? Bite your tongue, that’s a bad word around here.

And the more spaced out, lost and down we are, the harder these things become. They turn into Mt. Everest and we’re somehow trying to climb wearing only water skis. The feat seems impossible — is impossible. Can’t be done!

Yet, it has to be done. Nothing can be done until that one thing is done. This one thing that becomes magnified and takes over like a can of super stinky trash in a Bath and Body Works. And it can’t be done. It’s enormous, massive, gargantuan, and, still, has to be done.

All these things that I can do, are easy, take very little effort, but are bigger and more complex, and don’t feel like accomplishments or achievements.

Get the car an oil change? No problem, let me look at the calendar, make an appointment, get there on time and wait an hour. Make nine different presents from scratch? Give me a weekend, I’ll have it done by Saturday. Feed the cats, feed the dog, make sure they have food available to feed them, go to the store and get the food? I can assure you they have never gone without a meal.

Simple. Easy. No worries. 

But… today, I put the laundry in the dryer, and I could not be more proud.

Photo by Sarah Brown on Unsplash

Originally published: December 8, 2020
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