Little Obsessions

I am not by nature an obsessive person, at least on the compulsive level. I like my house tidy, but I don’t think about what you don’t see. If dust bunnies under the bed don’t bother me, I don’t bother them. I don’t need to have pens lined up or my kids’ toys stored exactly the right way. My time is better spent playing with my kids than worrying about the carpet fringe.
I have found some odd habits forming since becoming a mother. First, I started counting bottles. There are eight. At all times I must know where each bottle is, and nothing makes me happier than having all eight clean at the same time. I actually get a little annoyed with my kids if they decide not to finish one, and I have to store it in the fridge instead of washing it.
And now this has transfered to my daughter’s binkies. Our son used Soothies, all rubber pacifiers. These things seemed to disappear on a daily basis or show up in bits if the dogs found one. I would just buy another pack. And then he stopped really being interested in them around four months.
My daughter is different. She didn’t like the Soothies. She likes the Mams. Mams have these plastic knobs on which the company often places cute pictures such as a baby angel, a heart, or a seahorse. Also they can be pretty colors like pink. We have seven of them. We have always had seven of them. I am obsessed with not losing one. I have made myself late looking under the sofa and crib trying to find one that is missing even though I don’t need it to go somewhere. I have the other six, you see. I will mentally go over where each one is at least twice a day. Pink and white in the crib. Angel and heart in the diaper bag. She’s sucking away on the all pink one right now.
I know it is a relatively easy issue to psychoanalyze. The bottles and pacifiers are something easy to control, and in a life with two children just seven months apart, there isn’t much I can control.
Someday, one of these binkies is going to go missing for real, hidden under a rack of baby clothes at Target, or will experience death as a chew toy.
I hope my sanity will survive.

Sex is My Prozac

I, like many people, am a worrier. Now, my worrying is not the what if kind of worry. What if the car crashes? What is my cough is really cancer? What if I get fired? These are not the questions that keep me up at night. My worry is more guilt based. I have been known to drive from one end of the guilt turnpike to the other because someone didn’t like the movie or book I recommended. I wasted his/her time, you see.
I will often leave social settings and spend the drive home over-analyzing minor comments I made or someone else made thinking that it wasn’t as successful a fun time as I thought at the time. I have taken this one so far as to really think that my closest friends only tolerate me because they don’t know how to break up with me.
My family isn’t even safe from this crazy. I make myself responsible for my family members’ moods, especially my husband. Now since he came into my life, my guilt issues are not nearly as debilitating. My husband has a very logical side that enables him to end my guilt trip with one mild statement of common sense. It has been one of the most wonderful gifts he has given me. However, sometimes it can still sneak up on me. Somehow I become responsible if he has a bad day. If he is still carrying a bad mood from the day, it is now my duty to fix it. At this point I start to watch him for every little potential change in mood status. Better mood, yay me. Same or worse, all my fault. Poor guy.
But once the kids are in bed, and it is just us, in the dark, skin to skin, the layers of guilt fall off my shoulders along with my clothes. We know each other so well when the eyes are closed and the lips are open, I can not question anything. When there are no words, my mind stops yammering and just feels. It’s quiet. And finally when I lay there, thanks to my husband, yet again, I realize how pointless guilt is.
And it’s been almost ten years that we have been together. The guilt has reached such a low simmer that mostly, I can ignore it. And what I can’t, I have awfully good help dealing with it.