Tag Archives: clean

The Cleaner

It may surprise many of you to learn that despite my current financial woes, I continue to employ the services of a cleaner. The cleaner comes fortnightly, and her services are paid for out of my disability living allowance. It is a necessary extravagance and it is an extravagance that I look forward to and loathe in equal measure.

My excitement at having a clean house at the end of a three hour visit is obvious. The awkwardness that I encounter for the duration of that three hour visit is almost enough to get me on my hands and knees attempting to dust the skirting boards. Almost, I cannot get on my hands and knees to dust the skirting boards. There has been an empty bottle of water on the floor in my kitchen for two days, which I have been unable to pick up. I really hope she spots it today. Imagine what would happen to me if I partook in continuous exercise below the waist. Imagine indeed… At best, I would be a moaning minny. At worst, I would be on the Oramorph demanding another X-ray.

Let us face it, I also have a strange middle class, but on benefits, guilt of paying somebody to come and do my dirty work, whilst I lie on my sofa watching TV. I am lying on the sofa as I type this whilst the cleaner cleans. She’s two metres away from me making a vigorous scrubbing sound by the kitchen sink as I snuggle into a cushion tapping into my iPhone. I should really move into my bedroom now, but my back hurts, so I am multitasking, working up the courage to stand. She does not know why I am on the sofa snuggling into a cushion. What must she think of me?

A fortnight ago I made a point of taking my medication in front of her, and left a few boxes of drugs out in my room, so she could guess there was more to me and my story than a fat, lazy and inept housewife. That is what having a cleaner makes me feel like, apart from the housewife part. I am no a housewife, as the rotten vegetables in the bottom of the fridge are a testament to.

There are days when I would love nothing more than to be able to clean my own flat. I am in no way exaggerating. I am not saying I enjoy the act of cleaning, I would just like to be able to do it. For well over a month I have needed to adjust the valence sheet on my bed, it is a task I yet to complete because it involves lifting my mattress and I struggle to lift up my Le Creuset. Consequently, I feel like my bedroom resembles a squat with it’s exposed divan and collection of syringes.

Life is tough. Real tough.

My cleaner does not know that I get up early before her visits to make sure things are as tidy as I can make them, that the bedding is clean and dry and the dishes are put away, nor does she know that these activities tire me. She does not know that I do a disproportionate amount of dishes in my flat to make up for the fact that I cannot empty the kitchen bin.

Nobody tells you that this is a side effect of myeloma; uselessness.

I do feel quite pointless right now. Thank goodness I know that I make the mess and dirt in the first, otherwise I would be lying here questioning my very existence.

I just want to get under a blanket and snooze. Goodness knows how I am going to manage this in a fortnight’s time when I am crashing on my steroids and unable to get out of bed. The experience would be so much worse if I am in my pyjamas. There is nowhere to hide.

What is the etiquette when nature calls when it does not call that often? Heavens above.

On the plus side, for all the awkward and critical feelings I have right now, I know that in an hour’s time, my bed will be changed, my flat will be clean and there will be a lingering smell of bleach.

Before that happens, I have to get over the embarrassing issue of payment. I believe some people would refer to my concerns as a ‘first world problem’. My riposte would be, ‘myeloma’.

EJB x

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Wig Maintenance Part II

Once upon a time, I used to wash my hair frequently, I will not say that I did it daily for that would be a lie, but I would wash it and it would be clean. I was not a fan of the process. For obvious reasons, I do not need to wash my hair at the moment. It is almost liberating. Forget washing and going, these days I can throw a wig on and hop, quick, and step it out the door. The mirror next to the front door facilitates this.

The problem with wigs is that even if you alternate between a few, you still have to wash them. If you do not wash them, they start to smell like dog, or a well worn coat which you wore whilst swimming in a sewer. Surprisingly, they can also greasy. Due to monetary constraints, none of my wigs are made of real hair. So, what is one to do with dirty fake hair?

The first answer is put it off. Leave them and pretend they will clean themselves. I did this for a good month.

The actual answer or answers is Google and Pantene. I used both. And let me tell you, as I stood over my bathroom sink, trying not to feel my back, it was perfectly clear that a wash they did need, if the dead fly was not evidence enough.

Many people, and I mean two people, have asked me how one washes a wig. Well, based on my two attempts, I give you some expert guidance below:

Step 1: Fill the sink with warm, but not hot water, ensuring that you put the plug in, otherwise the sink will not fill. Add shampoo. Any brand will suffice.

Step 2: Add brushed wig and get it wet. The water will make it wet. Use your hands for this. They too, will get wet. After a minute of prodding, drain the sink and admire all the dirt clinging to the bowl and wonder where all the grit came from. Take a photo or two.

Step 3: Put the sodden wig in clean water and prod some more. After a minute of prodding, drain the sink and admire all the dirt clinging to the bowl and wonder where all the grit came from. Feel slightly ashamed.

Step 4: Repeat steps 1-3 with conditioner, because the task at hand is mindless and easy, yet, technically, you are still achieving something you can blog about/work into a conversation when people have asked you what you have done with you day, that is more interesting than saying you drew a few Santa Claus’ on graphics paper whilst watching television.

Step 5: Place wet wig, now smelling of clean smelling chemicals, in a towel and gently pat. Or in my case, leave the towel and wig in the bathtub and forget about it.

Step 6: Leave to dry on a wig stand. Warning. Do not place on a low windowsill when they is a puppy in your house, as it will be mistaken for a scary threat and said puppy will get territorial.

Step 7: Wear and pretend you have real hair again when your nose catches a whiff of shampoo in the wind. The wig will appear to be brand new all over again, only this time, it will not smell like plastic. Feel super sexy. Get it dirty again.

There you have it. A lesson in life. Pictorial evidence to follow. Please note the colour. It is a clear example of my approach to cleanliness.

No need to thank me.

EJB x

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Wig Maintainance

The one and only benefit to being a baldy unless you are Bruce Willis, is the speed with which one can get dressed. Not having to wash and manage my wonderful, former mane has saved about an hour per wash (I don’t want people imagining that I was doing anything wonderful with it, like brushing it 100 times, I had a life, that was simply, necessary drying time). These days are quite different, I can officially was and go. In and out. The introduction of fake eye lashes to my regime may change things slightly, I am told they require precision which I do not have, but for the moment, when I have energy that is, I am speedy as my foundation brush strokes will imply. Speedier than I was anyway. I still have to decide what not to wear.

I had failed to recognise something however, when it comes to my new regime. It is a relatively simple thing. The guidance came on one side of A4 after all. The simple thing is, washing the wig or in my case, wigs. Until today, I thought that the need to do so, had not yet arisen. I was contemplating it, but it was not yet something I felt was sufficiently urgent for me to spend my energy credits.

The majority of my wigs are straight and in terms of cleanliness, I am looking out for two things; grease and smell. I have not witnessed either. Today, I witnessed something else entirely, deep within the depths of my curls and that my friends, is the little known problem of the dried spider. In some territories, I believe they call it the candied spider, due to the sticky surface which imprisons the spider in the synthetic weave before it is placed in a hot room in front of a window in the middle of summer to die. If you are still uncertain about what happened this morning, let me enlighten you. As I repositioned my wig on my head, I discovered on the fringe, to the left, something that resembled a knot, but it was actually a long gone to the after world spider. An animal. In your real hair one gets lice. In wigs, you get dead spiders. Apparently.

Clearly, I am now concerned that my wigs are mass graveyards and I will be attempting to rectify that in the near future, if I feel that way inclined. However, I am well aware of who I am and my limitations. So should you be. The most recent evidence supports my recent theory, that I am, one big, dirty, rat bag. It’s not because I have cancer.

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Exhibit A

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Exhibit B

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Preparation II

Based on previous advice from the Medically Trained People https://ejbones.wordpress.com/2013/01/13/priorities-an-update/, somebody has had a super special wash to rid him of evil germs. He also got a new face, for a treat, just like my manicure…All courtesy of Mamma Jones of course for I do not have a tumble dryer and my hairdryer is temporarily on loan.

Unlike me, EMan is not looking forward to our vacation. He doesn’t appreciate the drop from the hospital bed to the floor. The arm cannot reach there… Any fall may also necessitate another shower and prolonged separation.

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