When I was a little girl every morning at 5:30 a.m. I had to make up my bed for my grandmother’s inspection around or about 5:45 a.m. With a wire clothes hanger in her hand, she’d run it across my bed and if she found a lump or bump, she’d throw the bedspread, blankets, and sheets back and tell me to re-make my bed.
Well, I hated re-making my bed over and over again. Needless to say, I quickly learned how to get it right the very first time. I made sure the sheets were squarely tucked at the foot of the bed, pillows fluffed neatly and placed straight at the head of the bed with all blankets smooth, tightly tucked and folded back underneath the top sheet eight inches below the pillow placement line. Now, my bed was ready to pass my grandmother’s inspection; she was pleased….
As a child, I didn’t know why my grandmother was so firm on my making up a perfect bed seven days a week, three hundred and sixty-five days a year. Some of my friends never had to make up their beds…. As an adult, I understand exactly what my grandmother was teaching me. This lesson was about details, standards, and productivity. She was teaching me about the care it takes to get-up, to groom and to be prepared for the day. She was teaching me to show-up on-time, to be organized and to get things done.
Seeing the details lends to doing work with attention to it. Having to redo the bed until it met my grandmother’s expectations has given me a “no quitting” attitude when the going gets rough. My knowing how to make up a bed properly has helped me to see the lumps, bumps, and flaws in situations not well planned or just plain bad. It gave me a thinking process to try to get a task right the first time around; to rearrange and correct with persistence when not quite right. That’s what making up a bed meticulously for my grandmother did for me. Could this be why military barracks’ beds are required to be made up daily with a precision hospital-style all-around tucked-in corners technic?
Making up my bed today is as automatic as brushing my teeth. Oh, I’ve added more comfort to my bed and some personal flair, but, the method of making it up is still pretty much the same. I didn’t like the “tough love” of having to learn how to make up my bed to my grandmother high standards. The lesson, however, enabled me to realize the lumps and bumps in life-and-living could be made better. It gave me an innate ability to “keep on, keeping on” with principles.
As my grandmother would say, “a well-made bed, is a life well-led”. Seeing the details, I have learned to enjoy the particulars of daily life, all its colors, the good and the bad. Making good choices in life is in the details.
Be Bold and Bloom. SuperSelf with Zalise