Today I am going to write about something completely unrelated to photography and creative entrepreneurship. There’s no real point or lesson attached to this edition of 2M2S (or maybe there is.) It’s really just a random insight into my brain. Why am I sharing this random insight with you? I have no idea. But, I am committed to trying to deliver 2M2S once a week (I missed last week), and this is what I came up with today. Perhaps you can relate, perhaps you think I’m nuts. Both are okay. Because both are probably true. I want to talk about an interesting little phenomenon that happens to me (daily) that I call the downward spiral.
It happened this morning, as we (Lanny and I) were getting the kids ready for school. This downward spiral is triggered by the smallest of things. I’ll be having a great day, smiling and laughing with Lanny and the kids, and then BOOM, I’m hit by the downward spiral. This morning, for instance, it was triggered by finding a random, dirty sock, not in the laundry pile, where such a sock belongs, but by the front door, on the entryway table. A table I purchased from West Elm, two years ago to give our entryway a warm and inviting feel. A table I purchased, with two small drawers, so that we could avoid cluttering up the entryway with receipts, loose change, keys, and stray dirty socks. But, this table has just become another surface in our house to put random stuff, dirty, crusty socks included apparently. Said crusty sock has been on the table now for four days, as I patiently (can you read the sarcasm?) wait for someone (anyone) to do something about it. But today, as I passed by the sock on my way up the stairs, my patience was gone. And this is where the downward spiral begins. It goes something like this…
- “You’ve got to be kidding me. A dirty sock on the clean entranceway table.”
- “That sock is gonna stay there for the foreseeable future until I nag someone (multiple times) to move it or pick it up myself.”
- “I am destined to a lifelong sentence of cleaning up after Lanny and the kids.”
- “It’s never going to change.”
- “I can’t accept it.”
- “But, if I don’t accept it, I am destined for a life of nagging. Which I also can’t accept.”
- “Those are my two choices: Nagging or accepting.”
- “I am never going to be content in life.”
- “We’re gonna end up like one of those old couples where the wife does everything and the husband does nothing.”
- “No f#$%ing way! I am not letting that happen.”
And repeat ad infinitum…
As you can imagine, once I’m in one of these spirals, it’s really hard to get out. One single, dirty sock can seemingly ruin my entire day. And, because it’s ruining my day, I need to make sure it ruins Lanny’s day too.
So, I leave the sock for the 4th day in a row and head upstairs to make myself a cup of tea, hoping that will calm my seething internal rage. It doesn’t. In fact, as I make the tea, I seem to spiral even further down the rabbit hole. I’m now imagining how my kids are going to remember me after I die. They’re only going to remember me as a nagging bitch. 50 years from now they’re going to stand at my grave and only have negative memories of me yelling at them about dirty socks.
Just as I’m envisioning my kids’ perpetual disdain, I glance at the living room which is adjacent to the kitchen. I count three more dirty clothing items strewn about. MY TMU hoodie on the couch. MY slippers by the desk. And what’s that in the middle of the carpet?! A pair of crusty socks I took off while stretching after yesterday’s run. (Gross, right!?)
“Hmm. None of them has had a downward spiral because of my dirty clothes left lying around the living room,” I grumble to myself.
Excuse me while I gather my own stinky clothes. I’ll quietly grab that dirty sock on my way to the laundry hamper, too. That’s all I’ve got today. Some days a dirty sock is all it takes to remind me that we are all flawed humans, and despite that, it’s all going to be okay.
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