My daughter is sharing with us the latest instalment of her parking tribulations.
“You’ve got into your own head. Your conscious brain is getting involved where your unconscious can already cope.”
“I know, but if I keep scraping the kerb like I do at the moment I’m going to need new tyres every couple of months.”
To distract her from the dismay I start a conversation in which we debate at length the best type of cheese from which you could make a usable spoon.
As we discuss this important topic I recognise that the only way in which it would be possible to have such a ludicrous exchange is if we were both in our own heads.
It reminds me of the time in supervision when my supervisor told me,
“You’re always in your head. When I ask you how something feels I can see you moving it into your brain to find out.”
At the time, it felt like a criticism but, through understanding my own neuro-diversity, I began to accept that it’s just the way my mind works.
I encounter emotion and understand what’s going on by processing it intellectually.
But not everything can be dealt with like this so, when it isn’t a blessing it’s a curse.
Having recently repaired my lawnmower it broke for good this week prompting me to research and buy a new one before the grass grows above the line of the raised beds.
When I bought and put my chosen model together there was a piece missing which, having spent half an hour assembling it, made me angry.
I called the store only to find them decidedly unhelpful. I got a bit angrier and, when the conversation finished, I was left feeling as if the customer service person I had been talking to was irritated at my annoyance.
This made me both angrier still and strangely upset.
Then the window seat arrived that I had chosen for the bay where the dogs like to sit. It was narrower than I had anticipated meaning that the dogs had to perch precariously on it when barking at unsuspecting passers-by.
“Why can’t I get these things right?” I asked myself, falling into a hole of self-recrimination and pity concluding that I would be better off leaving purchasing decisions to someone else.
That night, I wake at 3.30 am as the puppy scrambles into the bed, tunnels under the duvet and settles into the shape of a croissant near my feet.
There is an audible sigh and she is immediately asleep again.
I am not.
I turn things around in my head, wondering if I should have a window seat made or whether that might be an extravagant luxury just to allow two dogs to stare at strangers.
I think too about the reception I will get at the store when I go to collect the replacement lawnmower. I wonder whether the irked customer service lady might have deliberately taken a piece from the box just to teach me a lesson.
The constant cycle of thought is stopped only by tuneful early morning birdsong and the dawning realisation that you can’t think your way through everything.
I fall back into sleep until the dogs insist on simultaneous belly rubs as the milky, early light seeps through the blinds.
I’m ready for an uncomfortable experience when I arrive at the store.
The customer service lady disappears into the back and returns with the box.
“Shall we just check it’s all there?” she says with a distinct absence of attitude.
“There you go. You can cut your grass now,” she says with a jaunty smile and a cheery, “Bye”.