Saturday, March 1, 2014

Taming Chaos

I had a minor melt down one morning this week. It wasn't a bad one and it was totally justified and Rob didn't even get frustrated (at least during the opening act of said melt down, my melt downs usually come in acts). I have mentioned before that I looove lists. My friend posted a list (in slide show form which really isn't a list and is super annoying, but I digress) of the top ten ways to help people deal with their depression. What was number one? Help them manage the clutter!!! Oh my God, that is just what I need. I am drowning in my house. I can never take the time to figure out what needs to stay or go around this joint because I am too busy picking up after the rest of the household. I feel like I am stuck in the worst maternal themed Twilight Zone episode where you find yourself starting the same damn task (clearing the papers on your desk), but never finish because soda leaked all over the fridge and floor, the right pair of jeans were not clean for Lily, the dog peed again, and so on and so on.

This is the way my brain works: two competing conversations demanding to be written in a list, surrounded by back ground music being interrupted by childhood memories, which are then being interrupted by a screaming voice demanding that whatever has been forgotten is remembered and dealt with right now, which results in a racing heart beat, dry mouth, and general confusion and panic. Because I live with and navigate through this internal chaos everyday, I am an awesome at dealing with the insanity that is normally a first grade classroom. People ask me how I do it, and I always reply "These are my people." Very few understand how true that is. When it seems like I am ignoring you? I 'm not. Your words have not reached their destination yet. Think of my mind as a crowded dance club; what you're telling me has to push its way past the bar and DJ. Problem is my brain often mixes up what's been said. Classic example: I was washing dishes and lesson planning in my head while bouncing around some blog ideas. News radio was on because I think better with repetitive background noise. I heard what I thought was an ad for reversing hearing loss (I have high frequency hearing loss on top of everything else). I shut the door on everything else in my mind and REALLY focused on the commercial. It was an ad for reversing HAIR loss. At least I can see the humor in my mess ups.

Anyway, back to the meltdown. In order to keep up with a brain like mine, I need to function in an organized space. I am a creature of habit. If I put my brush in the hair brush basket, it had better be there the next day. If it isn't, it leads to confusion and guilt (see the post after this one). However, my family never puts things in the same place twice!!! They also shed their stuff like hyper snakes who have to dart from room shedding and can't possibly do it in one place. It is also Girl Scout cookie season and between that and violin and yoga (which is supposed to relax me), I've had no time to clean or fold laundry. My house had achieved "kiddy frat house" status.

I needed help with the clutter, so after my mild flip out, I asked Rob for help. He agreed that he and the kids would help this weekend. Problem solved, right? No. Remember all of those competing convos in my head? They had made lots of valid points about why Rob and the girls should help (I gave up a cleaning service so we could afford the girls' activities, they should respect me, I am too tired after cleaning to be any fun, I spend so much time cleaning, I never get to do anything else....). Once the arguments are created, they have to come out. So I kept going. I would leave a room, come back and make a point. Go to work, come home and make a point. This particular quality of mine is probably the one that annoys my husband the most. I try very hard to swallow my points.

We did spend the weekend cleaning up. Hopefully it lasts more than one day.

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