I love being organised, I live and breath organisation. Making lists gives me a high. I can make lists of lists. I have to do lists, of to do lists. No I do not suffer from a mental illness and no I do not think this is strange- it may just be highly annoying for those close to me. After much thought and introspection I do realise the constant organising is my way of feeling in control- having plans for plans and back-up plans. Having painkillers, a tape measure and a bottle opener in my bag help me to feel calm. I have everything I may need at any given moment. And my schedule, well my schedule is planned to the second. Weeks in advance I have made my dinner arrangements with friends and coffee plans. I know that in three months I must buy a new mascara- I have reminders and lists for things like this. I know on my plans for Saturday in three months time.
And then I met Peri.
Before our first date, I asked what time it would be- he said he would call me in the day and let me know. I felt panic grip me- he would let me know that day? That was the start to the chaos entering my life. Unplanned nights out drinking wine till 3am- that were not in my calendar. Going on unplanned shopping sprees, driving to Benoni at 8pm at night to get a kitten from the back of someone's car and buying a house together because our hearts just knew it was meant to be our home.
It has been with much difficulty and some sadness that I have had to let go of controlling everything. Firstly, I cannot control Peri's habits. If he decides at 7pm he wants to go for dinner (when I had bought chicken already to make for dinner)- I go with it. I cannot control he fact that he is not as tidy as me- that he leaves glasses everywhere in the house he goes and that he doesnt have schedule's of schedules. I can send him meeting requests for my scheduled events- which he accepts and I am sure it took him a while to come to terms with my trying to organise every second of every day. We have met half way.. truthfully some-days I meet him 80 percent of the way, and sometimes he comes 80 percent my way. Meeting half way all the time is hard.
Yesterday, for example, we had a friend's 30th. In my world I had scheduled- shop in morning for household goods, go to 30th Lunch, come home and unpack household goods and Peri to unpack last boxes of his, afternoon nap, watch 8pm movie on TV, early night before work.
In reality this is what happened- rushed shop, rushed to drop items at home- late for friend's birthday, home- Peri's friends arrived for drinks and snacks- fast forward 5 hours later and they are still there drinking and snacking and at this point we have gotten dinner. Nothing unpacked, nothing been organised and no early night. And guess what, the reality was fun- was light-hearted and brought laughter and love into my life. So my plans were destroyed, I had survived it.
And Peri, Peri has learnt to accept my meeting requests with well, acceptance. He has learnt that I love to be organised and he tries to put his clothes in the washing basket instead of on the floor. He secretly loves to write lists and tick things off and I secretly love to do things last minute and unplanned- there is something fun in not planning fun, right?
Yes it is possible to change, maybe it is not change, its compromise. But compromise implies you are giving up something and really- I have not given up my joy of organising, I have just learnt to appreciate another way of doing things.
With love and light... Embrace your idiosyncrasies but do let some room in for change.