Thursday, April 15, 2010

Control Freak

Hi, my name is Nic and I am a Control Freak.

I am an only child and a Virgo. These two qualities mixed together has wrecked havoc on my nerves throughout my life. After hours of therapy and daily doses of Lexapro I am starting to realize that my natural tendency to plan can very quickly turn me into a major Control Freak.

Part of the reason I completely crumbled during my marriage was this very reason. To prevent stress and anxiety I use calendars and to do lists to keep things under control. My X is the type of "fly by the seat of your pants" or "goes where the wind takes him" type of person who has isn't really concerned about schedules, "to dos" or concequences. When there was something that needed to be done (washing the dishes, throwing out the trash, cleaning up his mess, paying bills, taking care of the baby, etc.) and it didn't happen when I wanted it done or how it should have been done it resulted in me taking control. This happened so much that eventually he did nothing and I did everything.

Recently I got a glimmer of hope that my happily ever after could possibly come true. My natural reaction was to start thinking of how to make it happen. Within a week I had the entire future (ok ... 2 years away) pictured in my mind.

My boyfriend would relocate to San Diego and we have rented the perfect home. His ex-wife has relocated here too and is going to the local university for her masters and getting her teaching credentials. Their son is going to the childcare center at the same local university in preparation to go to the same elementary school as Princess D. My X has also moved closer and we are all getting along. (By "getting along" I mean "acting civil".) And, my boyfriend is no longer my boyfriend, but my fiancée and we are planning our wedding.

Perfect, right? I could turn this fairytale into a reality, but the problem is that this is not just my fairytale. I can't make everything happen like I want it to because there are other people involved that I have absolutely no control over no matter how hard I try. I can't control my boyfriend's ex-wife, I can't control my boyfriend, and I most certainly can't control the people who will issue their visas. So, instead of taking control (because I know I can't) I start to will it to happen. And, by "will" I mean "nag".

Has she applied for her visa? Has she looked at the university website I sent the links to? Has she looked for jobs? Has he talked to his parents? Is she starting to change her mind about moving?

When I don't get the answers I want to hear I begin to get anxious. My happily ever after fairytale ending begins to fade with my every nagging question. This causes my entire world to seem uncontrollable. So uncontrollable that even searching for an outfit to wear to a wedding becomes a nightmare of epic proportions ending in the near beheading of the sales lady who keeps bringing me linen scoop neck coral colored dresses which are completely inappropriate for travel, my body shape, and skin tone.

By the time my anxiety has gotten so out of control and I am in tears sitting on my bed I discover that I haven't taken my Lexapro for two whole days. Did my anxiety peak while my system was not under the necessary medicated control? Did my anxiety happen because it wasn't under necessary medicated control? I'm not really sure. What I do know is that before I had that glimmer of hope, the unknown gave me the freedom from trying to control a future for a complicated "family".

So, I am back to focusing on my calendars and my to do lists, which will include taking my daily dose of medicated control.