…and I Can’t Control It!
Before I explain the circumstances behind the straw the broke the mother’s back… let me explain one thing. I know that I am a control freak. I am in control of my control freak nature, by the very virtue that I know this fact. At least that is what I tell myself.
My house, however chaotic it may look to the outsider, is a well-oiled machine, one that I tend to each and every day. That ‘shit cupboard’ may look like a disaster zone to you, but I know what each and every cable does, when the last time we used it was and exactly where to find it when my amazing other half inevitably asks ‘’where is that thin cable that we used for the whatjamacallit?” Yes, I am so much of a control freak that I know exactly where everything is, all of the time, even when I am ill and I don’t know where my own feet are!
So, what is the one thing that could possibly send this type of personality into complete melt down mode? Make the control freak move her ENTIRE house and all of her ‘shit cupboard’ crap in exactly 48 hours from start to finish! Worse yet, add to the mix a husband who does not know how to pack and a mother-in-law who has her own unique way of packing and let them ‘help’.
Due to a million different factors, that all culminated in the same week, my mother-in-law, husband and I took the joint decision that despite the fact we were not due to move house for at least a month (giving me ample time to organise, collate, pack and label each and every box accordingly), we were going to move house in 48 hours. With two adorable (read – irritating) daughters under my feet due to the magically timed half term holidays, this was a task where I knew I would have to relinquish control.
I must say I held it together incredibly well… to start with.
I watched as my husband tipped entire drawers into empty boxes, whilst hearing the screams in my head, and I closed my eyes and counted to ten. I watched my mother-in-law packing up the kitchenware whilst thinking to myself, “that’s not how I pack plates,” but I took a deep breath and kept telling myself that to get through this I would have to let someone help. Please note that I was brought up in a military family and was taught a very specific way of packing from a very young age, something I later discovered is not a normal past time for most people.
Nevertheless, we did it!
We managed to move the entire house. Three vans full, over 45 boxes and a million bags of (dare I say it) unwashed laundry later, we were in our brand new house. This, ladies and gents, is when I chose to have my merry melt down.
Now normally when we move house I am the first person to crack on with the unpacking. I want my house exactly how I want it, and I will not stop pottering until its right. Again, it is important to state here that my husband (who normally disappears for a few days each time we move house) was also pottering, as was my mother in law. Both were putting things in places I had not specified, and unpacking more than one room at a time creating (in my mind at least) unnecessary mess.
This is when the evil ungrateful bitch from hell inside of me reared her ugly ass head and went to town. For the first time ever, I wanted everyone to sit the fuck down and STOP MOVING. After packing boxes for 48 hours straight I wanted no one to touch anything, to move anything, or to utter a single word. I needed the whole world, or the merry go round I felt I was sitting on, to stop and let me off for just one moment to breath.
My husband’s expression said it all. Crazy bitch doesn’t come close to what was written across his pale face. As for the mother in law – she backed out of the room quicker than the dog!
After a day of everyone avoiding each other and finally relaxing, we are now in a better place. I have learned to relinquish control and realize that yes, I do still need to know where everything is, but it’s ok if someone else puts it there in the first place. That it’s okay if I just sneakily check all the rooms and make a mental inventory, because despite how much my husband protests to the contrary, I know he will one day ask me for that red tipped screwdriver with paint mark on it… and that way I will need to know exactly where it is!
My control freak nature will not leave me, I know that, and I deal with that… but this move has taught me that I need to curb it just enough that I don’t scare off each and every member of my family in future. Or, and more realistically, that if ever someone asks me to move a house in 48 hours again, I politely say no… or tell them to go on holiday and let me do it by myself, to save any other possible near mental breakdowns!