I am unemployed but I'm still working. We leave tomorrow afternoon but there are still a ton of things to finish before we go. Namely, I wanted the house clean from top to bottom. The last thing I want is to come home from a seven-day vacation to a sink full of dishes, piles of laundry and dust everywhere. It's enough to make you want to stay gone. Unfortunately, Drew didn't really get that concept, thinking that vacation means packing a bag and resting. Bless his heart. I nagged - I'll say it. I nagged him to help me clean the house, sweep and mop the floors, empty the trash and the dishwasher while I did the laundry and cleaned the toilets, among other things I'm sure I'm forgetting. Oh, and we had to do our Christmas shopping, what little we had. Total recipe for a meltdown.
But back to my slippers. This morning I was catching up on blog reading and other nonsense on the internet. This meant that I did not have a close eye on the dog. She's taken to bringing things in the house that she's not supposed to, like sticks and pieces of our bushes and bringing them to us, inviting us to chase her. That damn dog thinks it's a game! You can practically see it on her face - Hey, I've a got a stick in the house and I'm going to chew it to bits and make a mess allll over the house, you wanna do somethin about it? Huh huh do ya do ya? At first we would chase her, playing right into her manipulative little paws, but then we got smart. We're all, no big, I don't care if you have a stick in the house. You don't phase me, punk. She would see that we weren't going to chase her and her shoulders would kind of slump and she'd just take the stick outside. Until she found out that there were things we WOULD chase her to get. Like my beloved slippers.
They were a gift from my mom and I loved them. That ridiculous dog TOOK my slipper off my nightstand, chewed it up, and had the NERVE to come into the sitting room with the remnants hanging out of her ridiculous mouth! I could have KILLED her! I know they say dogs don't have human emotions but I swear she was getting back at me because I wasn't paying attention to her!
My beautiful ballerina slipper - the good one.
I hate that dog.
I needed these slippers to wear at Drew's parent's house - they're my favorites! For me, my clothes - all of them - are like my security blanket. I need my outfits, my shoes and my jewelry when I'm going into an uncomfortable or unfamiliar situation. If I'm put together, then I can handle things - it's like my armor. So it was much more than my slippers - that ridiculous animal tore up a piece of my security blanket.
Then there was my blue sweater. We're getting family pictures made while we're there and it was my idea for us to wear various shades of blue. I had a blue sweater that I loved - I knew it looked good on me and I would feel comfortable getting my picture taken in it. I went to pull it out of the drawer where I thought it was and I couldn't find it. I started to panic and began pulling out all the drawers but no luck. I'm sure it's at a drycleaners somewhere. Another piece of the security blanket gone.
Not to worry - I'll just buy another one right? Except I'm unemployed and to go shopping when I have no income is irresponsible. I tried to find something at Target but everything is picked over with the last minute shoppers and I don't do very well with crowds - I couldn't stay long.
I braved the mall, because I needed a blue sweater and some slippers. I couldn't find either and on the way home I started crying because my nerves finally got the best of me.
I'm really nervous about going tomorrow because I don't do well with crowds and from what I understand the whole TOWN is coming to his parent's house TO SEE US. The thought alone is enough to get me crying again. Having to be on my best behavior, feeling like a freak show exhibit, being cold, being unprepared for the cold, being in an unfamiliar environment with unfamiliar people, being paranoid about taking too long in the bathroom - it takes a long time to do my hair - will they get that or will they whisper about the high maintenance city girl? I could have died when Drew went into this long explanation about how I'm lactose intolerant and I don't eat red meat - it's like I'm some lab specimen and they have to make a special MENU for me! Of course it's a family tradition to have prime rib on Christmas! I tried to tell him that it wasn't a big deal, that I'll eat around the cheese and red meat, please don't do anything special just for me - but no, gotta make special food for the freak.
In the big picture, slippers and a sweater are tiny, nothing of consequence. I know that, yet I fixate. I tell myself that it would be easier if I had my slippers, if I had my sweater, if I had a chance to do some RECONNAISSANCE or something.
I got home and it was all I could do to dry it up. Our neighbor was at the house and I couldn't even be bothered to be polite. Hey there, nice to see you! Don't mind me, I'm just having a panic attack - I'll be in the kitchen!
He sensed the weirdness and left, poor thing. And he's taking us to the airport tomorrow - AWKWARD! How do you explain that you're freaking out about being stared at by the neighbors, scared of the cold and you don't want to go because you don't have your slippers or your sweater? Yeah, you can't so you don't and I'm not gonna.
Naturally, Drew wanted to know what the deal was and I lasted about two seconds before I burst into tears all over again, telling him that I didn't want to go and couldn't they just come down here? I wanted to be on MY turf, where I KNEW the weather, where I was the hostess, where I was in control and I didn't have to worry about things. I have no idea what to expect when we get there and the sheer NUMBER of unknowns is freaking me out.
I know that he was upset, that I'm not as excited as he is about going to his hometown. I want to be, and that's precisely what's making me want to cry even now. I want to make a good impression, I want everyone to congratulate Drew on marrying such a wonderful girl. Unfortunately, all I can see are my negatives. My hair, my diet, my aversion to the cold, the fact that I'm not outdoorsy, meeting new people makes me panic so I don't do it, I'm afraid of being picked on, I'm afraid of having to make small talk with strangers because Drew has run off with some neighborhood friends and I suck at small talk and they'll be all, Drew's wife sucks, she can't even make small talk.
If these were just random people that I would never see again, I wouldn't care. If I had my slippers or my sweater or they had come down here things would be better. It's not rational and I'm well aware of that, yet I fixate.
You'd think the need for a security blanket would go away in adulthood. Ha. My only consolation is that I know I'm not alone - people have certain items that they freak out if they lose and they behave just like I am right now. For most people it's their phone, their planner, their watch. For me, it's wearing just the right outfit, including my house slippers.
So see, I'm not THAT crazy. Right?