Cleaning the Bathroom was Joy

bathroom cleaning_2455942b

I love experiencing community. I especially like witnessing community in the workplace. Ask what you can do for your community (not what your community can do for you). Sorry JFK-I co-opted your line.

I was so fortunate to be raised in service to. Values were to taught to me by my parents to offer help where ever needed. I serve where I can.

Ten years ago, when I took my 2-year sabbatical to attend acting school, I was in a conservatory in NYC that rented space in an off beat building and neighborhood. We all had jobs.  Twice a year, we all did a big cleaning of our floor of studio spaces and all. I volunteered to clean the bathrooms.  Two of them – unisex. Not kept up to my home cleanliness standards at all.

Why the bathrooms? It was the place no one else would choose. Clean bathrooms had the most impact on the whole community. It felt like baptism, clearing, cleansing, and strangely, a spiritual act. My heart burst. I don’t know why. I came prepared – costumed – if you will – in old clothes, hair tied up, a shower cap, apron, goggles, surgical mask, elbow length heavy duty rubber gloves, bucket, and heavy duty cleaning products were my props – the whole kit.  I was prepared with long handled brushes and I worked to scrub those spaces top to bottom – floor to ceiling.

You may find this highly yucky. I don’t have the words to explain why it felt so good. It was other worldly, out of body.  Crazy, right?

I write about the work of presence and impact. Having an impact on the community and on the individuals in the community just feels so darn good. I guess that’s why I seek it out.

bathroom bucket

Leave a Reply