My husband and I fold laundry together. It’s one of the only chores we can share and still enjoy each other’s company, not only because it’s the only household job that neither of us has passively and purposely fumbled to get out of, but because we joke around a lot while we’re folding, like we just met.
The conversation is also mixed with nostalgia.
“When did our baby start wearing size 12 jeans?” We hold the boys’ pants up to ourselves and observe how close they are to towering over us and asking for the car keys.
“I remember when those used to fit James.”
It’s one of the few times that we stop and take a gander at our stuff and think about what we’ve created together.
I hold up a pair of Skye’s man underwear. The waistband is shot. I hold them up and shake them out and they still look pathetic.
“Look at these ratty tatty unders I’m folding. You know your marriage is built on love when you’re folding underwear like this.”
He reaches around to the open drawer behind him and pulls out a handful of my underwear. “You should talk. You’ve got some real winners in here that I folded.” He holds them up and I cringe. “Oh, yea. Those.”
It was one of those winners that landed on the locker room floor at the gym yesterday. It sat there between my locker and the bench where I was getting dressed without my glasses on. It wouldn’t have been too embarrassing if I was in the locker room with total strangers. But I look over at the lady next to my locker, who was there long enough to have seen the underwear fall, five minutes before I realize it’s mine. She’s a teacher at my son’s school. Awesome. I can’t act like “it was there”, grab my stuff out of my locker, step over the underwear and leave.
We look right at each other and look away. Locker room code for I see you, but this is awkward, so I’m going to act like I don’t know you. We normally say hi to each other but not anymore, ever. Not after she saw my ratty tatties.