In completely unrelated news, I now have a clean bathroom, bedroom, kitchen, and living room, along with clean sheets, towels, clothes, and dishes.
I have known since early high school that I work better in an orderly environment. I know it sounds kind of strange. But sometimes, when my room would become a pigsty, I had terrible trouble concentrating on my homework. I would have to clean up before I could really get down to it. I also realized that I got out of bed faster and in a better mood if I didn't have to climb through piles of clothes and shoes and junk to get to the doorway. Who would have thought?
Since I have recently been feeling like my life is out of control and that I'm surviving in a strange limbo land, it only makes sense that this would be a step toward living again. I can't believe it took me this long to realize this might help me feel a little more focused and in control.
So I scrubbed. And I vacuumed. And I sorted. And I tossed. And I laundered. And I folded. And I cleaned. You get the picture by now, right? Okay, good. I thought so.
The list of things to do dwindled, but the frenzy was still running strong. I stood in the kitchen and stared at the gleaming counter tops. And decided to bake bread. Two kinds of bread, actually. Whole wheat bread and herbed focaccia.
Just as I need an orderly environment to thrive, I also need a physical outlet for my stress. I should totally join a kick-boxing class. Then I would have a lower stress level and a lower weight level. But I'm cheap and lazy. So instead, I bake break.
That sounded weird, right? Let me explain. Making bread requires kneading dough. Kneading dough takes your whole body. It's not just in the hands. It's in the arms and shoulders, too. You put your weight into it. It's kind of like having a punching bag. A punching bag that turns into starchy, carby comfort food when your aggression is gone. So it's a win-win situation.
The funny thing is, I know this. I know that I use bread as a stress release. I've even told people about my need to bake when I'm angry. I kind of can't believe I haven't made bread to combat the RAGE. I think I might need my brain checked. It's been moving very slowly lately.
So I used this weekend to get back the control. I cleaned. I made bread. I relaxed. I deliberately ignored my job. It was so good.
And this morning, I forced myself to get up a half-hour early and have breakfast and make my lunch. Because I have been stopping for a latte and a muffin every morning on my way to work and then picking up some kind of fast food for lunch so that I have an excuse to escape my office for an hour. But who do I think I am, Rockefeller? A month of eating out for two (or all three) meals a day is hard on a budget. And it's not like my job pays that great. Plus, calories, people! No wonder I look like a blimp. I am SO SLOW in the thinking department. This was like a Weekend of Clarity for me.
I ate cereal and sipped freshly brewed coffee while I made a cheddar, ham, and turkey sandwich on HOMEMADE wheat bread. Then I added a whole ton of other lunch-like things to my pretty polka dot cooler bag, since Sister is awesome and went grocery shopping while I cleaned. YOU GUYS! Our house now has food and a place to cook it AND dishes to cook it on. These are like Nobel Prize worthy accomplishments, people!
So even though today was a weird day in which my boss came into the office and chatted about nothing for several hours, left at lunch and came BACK (almost unprecedented) and chatted for several MORE hours. This was incredibly helpful; I accomplished a grand total of zero things. So... Not really unlike any of my other days.* Anyway, I think I was in the middle of a sentence up there and totally left it dangling. SO, even though today was weird and uncomfortable, I was still in control! I ate breakfast before I left, brought my own coffee in a travel mug, and left the office for an hour and ate my packed lunch at the park in my car (Because WINDY! Ohmygod guys, it's FALL!), all without spending extra money or calories on crappy food I receive through a window.
Today was a good day. Not great. Not good good like last Thursday. But still decent. I was in control. I was not a RAGE machine. I was able to let go of my work stuff before I walked in the door, into a clean and happy kitchen. All in all, an improvement over many of my days this summer. SUCCESS!
Now you tell me one (or all) of the following things:
- Have you recently had a "duh" moment in which you realized a simple fix to a seemingly unfixable problem?
- Do you like bread?
- How do you deal with stress?
- How do you maintain/regain focus and control?
- Have you baked my herbed focaccia yet?
- Have you accomplished small things recently that you are completely proud of and want Internet recognition for?
- What did you have for lunch today?
*Let's not pretend that what I do all day is actual work. Because it's not. It's a combination of butt kissing, conflict avoiding, and secret blogging. Which is exhausting and kind of like working, but it doesn't result in any kind of marketable product. So, you know, "working."