If you live in a two-story house, going up and down the stairs can be exhausting, especially if you’re a parent who’s constantly running after (and cleaning up after) kids. One way to combat the situation is a little trick that many moms stand by: leaving things that need to be ferried up or down on the stairs to be taken up together, by whoever is already headed that way.
Recently, it seems, everyone has realized that this is a bonafide mom phenomenon that seems to span the world, cultures, generations, and lifestyles — if you’re living in a two-floor situation, you’ve likely left something there or had someone yell at you, “Hey, take that up with you!”
A post on Twitter opened up the topic, and now everyone is talking.
“I have never lived in a two story house,” wrote novelist Molly McGhee. “Is it normal for people to ‘leave things on the stairs’ for you to ‘take up’ as you go? Is this like some secret knowledge you all have from your childhood?”
While the Twitter universe quickly let McGhee know that leaving stuff on the stairs is definitely a thing, the conversation soon erupted into several debates: Do only moms leave stuff on the stairs for transport? Do only moms actually pick the stuff up? Should you have a stair basket? Is leaving stuff on the stairs more of a hazard or a help?
“In my experience the mom of the house leaves the things on the steps. The mom is also the only person in the house who takes things up as she goes,” one person responded.
“OMG this is my life. Everything in the entire world sits on the stairs, waiting to be taken somewhere else. Currently: a purple scarf, a set of keys, a tote bag, a stack of papers,” another said.
One person — director Dawn Porter — pointed out the existence of “stair blindness.”
“Yes everyone knows this rule,” she wrote. “But kids and husbands have stair blindness. So essentially I’m leaving things for myself.”
And one woman shared this incredible leave-it-on-the-stairs story: “I once put my husband’s Walgreens bag on the stairs for him to take up and it took me four days to realize he knew they were there, he had just been putting on his deodorant and taking his vitamins THERE ON THE STAIRS every morning and returning them to the bag on the stairs.”
I feel like I know that guy.
But not everyone loves leaving crap on the stairs; there is definitely a group that thinks that what some see as efficiency is just plain dangerous (probably due to their stair blindness).
“It is normal for one faction to do this and the other faction to complain it’s a death trap,” one person noted.
And over on TikTok, multiple kids have posted funny videos about their own stair blindness, despite their moms’ best efforts.
Moms have responded with their own side of the story.
“No one has more hope than a mom who puts stuff on the stairs waiting for everyone to take their sh-t up,” wrote TikToker @nevertooearlyforwine, while sharing a video of her kids’ things hanging out on the stairs.
Another mom, @jennaroxbury shared trying to climb the stairs after she’s piled it with things “going up” — with Coolio rapping in the background: “As I walk through the valley of the shadow of death…”
There’s also a whole contingent of moms who swear by the stair basket: an attractive little basket that is shaped to sit upon a couple of stairs. It can fill with all the stuff that needs transportation while keeping everyone safe, though it’s unclear if those with stair blindness see it at all.
Does this basket actually help get things up or down the stairs? Totally unclear. But it’s cute. And maybe that’s a step.