do your chores

Mom, Go Do Your Chores!

In Adventure, All by Don AlleyLeave a Comment

“Hey Mom, do your chores.”

She was stalling. Painfully. I could see it all over her face. She was talking…about nothing. She wasn’t feeling it. Maybe this wasn’t such a good idea.  

Imagine: you’re sitting on your couch, doing your work, creating your art, planning your day, living your best life. 

And there’s your mom, just… slacking. 

You love your mom. You really do. But in this instance, she isn’t in your house as your mother, she’s there as your staff. 

Asking questions. Questions she knows the answer to. She’s fidgeting. Looking around. Picking things up and putting them back down. She doesn’t want to be there.

It was 2011, and Heather Carboneau, who is now the director of the amazing Center Stage preschool, had just moved on from being my assistant. 

Heather wasn’t just Master Alley’s assistant. She was DON’s assistant. She ran my life. Paid my bills. Dressed me. Cleaned my condo. Bought my groceries. Cleaned up my messes, and dealt with my emotional chaos. 

And then she left. Outta the blue. No notice. Gone. Poof. Something selfish about spending more time with her family. I don’t know…

There was a void. A whole. A vacancy. A job opening. Someone had to buy my eggs, and it certainly wasn’t going to be me. 

It was honestly my mom who approached me. I didn’t even think about how GENIUS it would be. How special. How amazing. How… devilish. 

“Don, honey, I could use some extra money, do you think I could take over Heather’s job for you?”

Insert mischievous grin.

You mean to tell me, I would get to handoff my checklists to my MOM, and hold her accountable? Am I hearing this correctly? Is this happening?! Oh gods. Sign me up. Sign HER up!!

Yes YES YEEEESSSS!. Sold! Hired! To the lady in the corner with five hundred and thirty seven “to-do” items about to appear on her daily planner!

So there she was. In my kitchen. Looking around. A mountain of tasks piling up in front of her. And on the floor. And the bathroom.  And in my bedroom. And the other bedroom. I’m a messy guy. Don’t judge me. Creatives usually are. I didn’t choose the messy life. The messy life chose me. 

Back to my mom. 

Stalling. Procrastinating. Dreading. It was ugly, not gonna lie. I’ve seen that look before. I have FELT that look before. 

Go ahead mom, feel that. Let it sink in. Now you know what I felt my whole life. Getting home from school, feeling accomplished for the day, and all I wanted to do was throw my book bag down and go play with my friends. But what was I met with?

Chores. A list. A long. Damn. List. All the things you wanted me to do before you got home. 

But now, it’s my turn. 

“Mom.” I said it gently, I swear. ”Go do your chores.”

When I was a kid, she and I used to have a “swear jar” of sorts to get us to watch our mouths. You can imagine what her response to me was.

My mother’s tenure as my personal assistant didn’t last long. There were no benefits. No health insurance. No retirement plan was offered. Only the sweet satisfaction of helping her son be free to create.

I knew going in that it would probably be temporary. But sweet, baby Jesus. I wish everyone the ability in life to once, just once, tell your mother to do her chores. 

Moral of the story? I have no idea. I thought I might get here and have some epiphany, some semblance of value to add, some life lesson I could share.  

Nope. I got nothing. I try to write a thousand words per day. Sometimes, you get what you get 😂

This message was approved by Margaret Martual. 

Hey Mama! Stop scrolling through Facebook. You got chores, girl! 🤪

Don Alley
Don Alley is an artist and entrepreneur. He is known as the karate guy, the preschool guy, or the video guy. He runs Super Kicks Karate as the chief instructor in Ashburn, Center Stage Preschool, and Lucky You Media. He is also the co-founder of Testudo Addiction Recovery, a non-profit organization serving families across the country.

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