How to cope with being a control freak

Today I had a mini-breakdown. Unlike me I know. I’ve been staying for the past nine days at the boyfriend’s house in north London. This should not be a problem for me, but it is, because low and behold I should be turfed out of my daily routine. The routine that involves 45 minutes to get ready before the train, Nutri Grain on said train, work – with cereal and yogurt, followed, several hours later by soup, followed several hours later by a sugary sweet binge on the way home, followed by a swim, a blog post and then bed. This is not how my life has been working since last week, and it came to breaking point today – an awkward lunchtime cry in the bath, like a newborn baby. (It’s not the crying that alarms me so much, but the lunchtime bath, WHO takes a relaxing soak when they should be carving up a super chunky Friday-sized sandwich?!)

There of course was a build up to my embarrassing mental state. I’ve had a horrible cold, the sort that feels as though an elephant has angrily trampled across your face (and sinuses), I’ve had a turbulent working week, and i’ve been overly thinking about and Google-ing my ill Father. Plus, because I’m secretly a horribly needy girlfriend (hard to imagine, I know) and my boyfriend’s been too ill to shower me in affection, I’ve been feeling all miserable and un-loved and pathetic.

Picture the leftovers of Voldemort in the final Harry Potter film. The crumpled pale mess under Harry’s faux-King’s Cross station, that, ladies and gentleman was me approximately three hours ago.

It all stems down to what I have mentioned in a previous blog post, my inability to cope without control and structure. I’m assuming this stems way back into childhood, the way for my ten-year-old self to cope with all the changes in my family set-up, and for some reason I’ve carried it through to adult life. It irritates employers, my boyfriend, my friends, my step mum, I am so absolutely unopen to change.

Combine this with my ex-flatmate’s notion of Cabin Fever. Going inexplicably mental because you’ve stayed indoors too long. One of the downsides about working from home is that you miss out on social interaction. I feel like I need to put on a full-face of make-up, my highest heels and eat myself into a splendid oblivion, coupled with countless cocktails and glasses of wine (you see, I unwind slightly when I’m well fed and watered).

Is the need for routine and structure a female thing? It’s taught me that I won’t be able to cope with a full-on freelance job in the future, but it also reminds me how much I hate other people distracting me. In any way. I want my dinner, my job rules, my bedtime and my schedule. Because in my head I mentally prepare for everything. I mentally prepare my appetite for specific dinners, my eyes for specific television programmes and myself for specific outings, and I go into a complete downfall the moment anyone attempts to change these things.

I like to think university gave me a laid-back streak, let me play around with spontaneity. But then ugly post-graduate life reared its head and I’ve become a bigger control freak than ever. I control my food, my exercise, my boyfriend, for goodness sake I even have to mentally prepare to see my friends. My biggest hope is that as life becomes more predictable I will begin to relax again, so here’s to the future, and hoping it brings more stability for my uptight self.


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