My brain has no off switch.
I don't mean this in a "Look at me! I'm so constantly creative and productive and ON!" kind of way, either. I mean it like My inner voice - THE HARBINGER OF DOUBT AND DOOM – never ever shuts up and I am constantly driven to practically paralyzing distraction by the overwhelming and never-ending sound of the BLAH BLAH BLAH inside of my own head. (Help. Me.)
Yesterday, Maureen and I were having a conversation about perspective. And by "conversation" I mean Mo was listening to me BITCH AND MOAN, and by "about perspective" I mean that she was trying to give me some because as usual? I DO NOT HAVE ANY. The exchange went a little something like this:
What Maureen Said: Sometimes something just is what it is. Don't read into it.
What I Heard: GAhhhhhhbarrrrrrdurrrrrr (garbled) (followed by confused and echoing silence - MY OWN)
The idea of immediately accepting something at face value is completely foreign to me. I just honestly cannot process this concept. Do people do this? Without their lives imploding? (And maybe the lives of several people around them?) I can eventually accept the face value of something, but this is only AFTER analyzing it and studying it from every possible angle as well as a few additional angles which should not be possible and yet somehow are because my over-thinking? WILL NOT BE DENIED.
It doesn't even matter what's on my mind, either. A big ticket item? A small nuisance? Something not even worth one second of my pause? It's all the same to me. If the thought gets into my head, chances are it's gonna stay there for a while as I analyze it to within an inch of its life. (CRAP.) I will think. Mull. Ponder. Wonder. Speculate. Consider. Theorize. Predict. Worry about. Obsess over. Imagine. Extrapolate. Question. And question. And question.
This makes me seem like I'm a super-smart, deep thinker, right? WRONG! It just makes me seem like what I actually am: ANNOYING. If I had a dollar for every time I asked myself, "What the hell does that really mean??" or "What exactly is actually happening here??" Well, let's just say I wouldn't have time to be sitting here writing this post as I'd be way too busy ROLLING AROUND NAKED IN MY GIGANTIC PILES OF MONEY.
As you can imagine, this kind of personality trait (because "trait" sounds so much prettier and more acceptable than "Pathetically Asinine Personality Flaw") is not exactly ideally suited for my current situation with The Porcupine. Because if I can get totally caught up in the normal, day-to-day things (My boss seemed cranky...am I going to be fired? Did I screw something up, I can't THINK of anything I screwed up but maybe I just don't know about it yet? I can't remember locking the door, did I lock the door? Did I not lock the door? Did the wind swing it open? OHMYGOD is the cat wandering around on the street now? And what about the insulin, did I even put that away?? Did I just flush another $100? Am I really that stupid? I haven't talked to Friend A in weeks now does she think I suck? Oh my god, I DO suck and now she totally knows it! What the hell am I gonna do??), imagine what I can do with everything I'm in the middle of right now. I have fodder for worry FOREVER!
I am slowly driving myself just this side of bat shit crazy thinking and worrying about everything that's going on. Extrapolating is my personal favorite these days as I try to figure out what Every Single Solitary Thing That's Happening Now will mean for everyone involved six months from now. Or a year. Or five years. Or when I'm an old lady. (Because really?? I might be one before this all gets resolved. I AM SO SURE.) I don't reserve all of this activity for just my waking hours, either. I know I also do it when I'm asleep because I can't remember the last morning I didn't wake up in a panic – even before I was aware enough to remember what exactly it is I'd even have to freak out over. (I don't have a snooze bar. I have a panic button.) And then I'm like, 'Oh yeah. EVERYTHING."
I realize that my over-thinking is some kind of weird control thing. I'm currently in a situation I have little to no control over, so I think and think and think and think about everything in the attempt to somehow quiet the chaos that way. Which of course never works. Which of course I already know. Which of course makes no difference as MY BRAIN HAS NO OFF SWITCH.
I knew going in to this exactly how life with The Porcupine (such as it currently is) would rub up against all my worst issues. This would be a challenging situation for anyone, but for an over-thinking control freak with really awesome hair such as myself? (Not that my hair has anything to do with anything here except for the fact that I was just noticing that it IS looking particularly awesome these days on account of the fact my stylist Jenny??? Is a god.)
So all I can do is do my best. Try as hard as I can to refrain from my constant puzzling and supposing – at least once in a while – because I'm really starting to become a serious threat to my own sanity. I attempt this kind of growth by doing things like I did yesterday: Recognizing my problem ("Hi! I'm Lesley and I'm a HOPELESS OVERTHINKER." "Hiiiiiiiii, Lesley!") and reaching out in the attempt to get a little perspective. Or maybe a lot. All in all, I think I'm gaining some serious ground too, as revealed by the following recent conversation:
The Porcupine (totally exasperated and obviously experiencing some incredible restraint since he was talking to me instead of punching me in my face): Hon. Why are you thinking so much?
Me: Well, because I'm...hold on a second. WHAT THE HELL DOES THAT MEAN??