For example, at the end of third grade, I was cleaning out my desk and found a rotten box of milk behind all of my papers. It had been there for months and I had no idea. In college, I sometimes threw away dishes because they'd been gross for months. Yep, months. My bed was usually covered in books and papers except for the little spot where I slept. I had no drug or alcohol use or abuse issues. It was just how I was. And not because I never had to clean or do chores.
My dad (who I wasn't even around that much growing up) is worse if you can believe that. I once visited him and my brother and I cleaned up a foot deep of garbage from his bedroom. His sheets were rotten where he slept.
Anyhow, I decided after my daughter was born that I would not live like that for her. So now we do little cleanings together all day long, and while our apartment is not pristine, it's clean. Dishes done, floors swept every day, bed made in the morning, etc. I have a daily planner that I keep track of my work assignments and our appointments in.
I just don't know why I turned out so messy like my dad when I spent most of my time with my mom. She is pretty clean and tried to show me how to be clean too. It was very demoralizing to always be the most disorganized kid, never have my homework done because I forgot what it was or where it was, and to always hear from people (including my mom) how I was smart but lazy, disorganized, and irresponsible. I don't want her to experience that. I want her to feel how nice it is to take care of her things and her space, and be able to complete tasks in a timely manner, and how proud she can feel of herself when she is able to work hard and do more of what she wants to do because she isn't wasting time feeling anxious or bad or worried because she lost something important.