October 28, 2009
OCD Babies Wear Garanimals
This past summer, I purchased an adorable little book of sudoko puzzles. I picked it up and fell in love - it was small, concise. I loved the format and the fonts - it was easy to do a puzzle, mark it as done, then put it away. I saw that it was 2nd in the series, so I went back to Barnes and Noble to pick up the first one. They did not have the 1st in the series, but they did have the 3rd in the series. Later, further inspection with information desk revealed there was 4th in the series, as well.
I knew immediately where this was going, although I did my best to resist. I dutifully picked up the 3rd one and tried to quell the squirm of worms in my stomach. While I am not clinical, I do have obsessive tendencies (like many other folks? I hope? Hello? Is there anybody out there?) One of these obsessions is with "completing sets". Fortunately, I am not a full-on collector of anything in particular but this compulsion does manifest itself in books - be it a series or a particular author. Renewing my love affair with my local library a few years back has gone a long, long ways in helping me. In fact, I was able to break apart a few sets that I had religiously compiled by simply keeping my favorites from each series. My local library has also helped me with my Life Goal of reading everything fiction that John Irving and Margaret Atwood have written. Knowing that I can access any of their works so easily, helps calm my stomach and keeps me from rabidly hunting for these particular authors.
And that is the best way to explain a compulsion - when it comes on, my stomach literally begins to twist and I simply cannot let it go. The churning is why I carefully comb through antique malls and garage sales for books from the Sweet Pickles and Gus the Ghost series . It is why I stalked Trixie Belden and Katie John on eBay for years. And it is why I gave in and ordered the rest of the sudoku set from Amazon the other night.
My stomach twists over loads of silly things - well, silly to the rest of world, but not so very silly to me.
My entire life, I have been described as "picky".
If that is another word for it, then yes, I AM picky.
I still have not decided whether it is a good thing or a bad thing that I married someone completely and utterly the opposite to me. We have our fair share of communication problems because he does not realize how serious it is to me when he does Certain Things. On the other hand, if he were like me and I was constantly doing Certain Things that contradicted his compulsions? I suspect it might be even worse. I think someone like me probably needs to be married to an Absent Minded Professor type. At least, in my case, Manoj clearly and perfectly understands why I am the way I am. When he met my father for the first time, he wryly observed "At least now, I know where it comes from."
One last thing about this persnickety side of me - I often find myself really having a true sympathy for my toddlers. I understand that deep-seated desire for something to be a precise way - be it cereal in a certain way with a certain spoon or the desire for toys to be played with in a very specific manner. Where I often butt heads with my toddler is when their obsession conflicts with mine. Sad, yet true. I also often find myself sympathizing with my autistic nephew. Seriously. Nolan buddy, I get it. And my heart breaks for him because I know how hard it is to move past an obsession. I am able to do it whereas, he is simply incapable.
Now, if I can only get the stupid Gap to get the particular jeans I want back in stock already and then I can get my life back. Jeans that fit me perfectly and even have the correct inseam for my short stumps. Jeans that seem to be out of frocking stock everywhere.