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Oct 04 2013

How 2 minutes can turn a neurotic person’s world upside down

I have a very strict morning routine that goes exactly like this:

  • First alarm goes off at 7 am. I snooze for 10 minutes.
  • Second alarm goes off at 7:10. I snooze again.
  • Finally, at 7:20, I get up and start getting ready for work (doing the bare minimum).
  • By 7:40 I’m dressed and ready presentable, but I get back into bed to watch Breakfast Television.
  • At exactly 8:15, I get up, grab my phone, feed the fish, gather my bags, and go.
  • My husband and I get in the elevator, head to our cars, say goodbye and leave for work.

This is my routine. Every day.

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One morning, my husband threw me a curve ball that flung my entire day out of whack. At 7:50, he says to me, “Can we leave 2 minutes earlier today?”

[Insert dramatic gasping sound here]

This is what happened to me:

I was silent for (I kid you not) a good 20 seconds before responding with a reluctant, “Why?” He said, “To miss all the school buses.”

Still reluctant (because I hate change) but afraid he’ll think I’m a total nutcase (because I really am), I agreed to leave 2 minutes earlier.

Ten minutes later, he reached over and felt that my hands were sweaty. Assuming I was nervous about something work-related, he asked me what was wrong.

I shouted out, “I don’t like change!”

My husband’s used to my insanity, so he ignored my outburst because in his mind, it’s only 2 minutes.

I watched the clock change from 8:11 to 8:12 and then 8:13. Getting up to leave before the Entertainment City segment of BT felt weird. I’ve become so used to my morning dose of Justin Bieber or Lindsay Lohan gossip.

Being in the elevator 2 minutes earlier than usual felt weird. There were different people in the elevator, it stopped at different floors, and it had a different smell.

When we were at our cars about to say our goodbyes for the day, I yelled, “I forgot my laptop!” I told my husband to leave without me, but he insisted on accompanying me for the journey back upstairs. Clearly, 2 minutes have caused a physical sweaty reaction and memory loss. So he escorted me upstairs while I kept saying, “I don’t know what’s wrong with me! I just don’t like change!”

While we were in the elevator going back, I realized, I forgot to feed the fish!

That was when my husband gave me that genuine WTF look.

He didn’t say it out loud, but I know in his head he was asking himself 1 of 2 questions:

  1. How TF can someone be THAT neurotic?!
  2. WHY TF did I marry this lunatic?!

Instead he asked me, “Why is this such a big deal? You’ve left early before.”

“But that’s different. I knew the night before that I had to leave early. I had time to adjust to that change.”

 “But it’s 2 minutes!”

At that point, he stopped talking and just shook his head.

His plan of leaving 2 minutes earlier to avoid being stopped by school buses resulted in both of us being MUCH later than usual. But like any normal person functioning in society, he can adjust to mild changes. Meanwhile I was on the verge of a nervous breakdown.

Rather than getting to work around 8:40 like I usually do, I got there close to 9. My usual my parking spot was taken. Someone also took my spot in the fridge where I usually keep my lunch. I conspired that it was likely the same person who took my parking spot.

The rest of my day was a spiral mess. Okay – maybe that’s a slight exaggeration, but I did feel really “off” all day.

So all in all, both my husband and I learned that:

  1. I really don’t like change.
  2. I need some advance notice of any kind of change.
  3. Considering how neurotic I am, I’m very lucky my husband hasn’t divorced me yet.

 

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