It’s happening again. I’m having one of my moments. My husband is self-employed, which means every now and then “the checks are in the mail” – to us. Now, as history will prove, the checks really are in the mail. We’ve never landed in the poor house, never even close. In every economy we’ve been blessed, and I don’t use that word lightly. I’m not the serene type of woman I imagine earns the right to use it. No, I am the type of woman who exhibits what we call “Scarlett O’Hara Moments.” Perhaps you recognize them. They occur when the bank account gets a bit lower than desired and I forget to breathe deeply and remember that everything works itself out. “Scarlett O’Hara Moments” occur when I hyperventilate unnecessarily, fall to my knees, grab two handfuls of dust-bunnies and say to myself, with jelly smeared across my forehead, not “I’ll never be hungry again,” for that would be too optimistic. No, I say, “If we must be poor, then we will be clean!” for this, at least, seems noble. My patient husband, recognizing my symptoms, looks forward to the brief bout of domestic organization that inevitably follows.
I concluded somewhere in my parallel learning curve - HGTV and VH1 - that being rich and sloppy is bohemian, poor and sloppy simply negligent, so with stoic resolve I decide to scrub the entire house and each of the children (even the boys!).