Those of you who have been with me for a while are aware that I’m a bit OCD, and it especially manifests itself in my need for routines, schedules and sameness. I don’t deal with the unexpected very well — which, as you can guess, has me stressed a great deal of the time, because life is full of the unexpected. Spontaneity? Sure, I’m okay with spontaneity, as long as I have advance notice of it.
Backtrack to a couple of weeks ago. I had a very nice first-time public visit and chat with a potential play partner. He works very long hours, being an office manager, but he said he could meet with me around lunchtime. I told him to choose something near his work; he asked if I was okay with sitting outdoors, as long as we were in shade. And then he asked, “Is it all right if I bring a friend?” My first thought was “HUH??” Then I saw the attached picture: a big fluffy white dog. What do I love, kids? People’s dogs. What didn’t I get to pet and fuss over for 15 months? People’s dogs. I was thrilled.
So it was a fun afternoon (and the dog was adorable). We agreed we would try to get together sometime before he left in mid-July for a two-week family vacation.
Last week, he said he might be able to come over on Tuesday (this past Tuesday, the 6th), but wasn’t sure. Could he let me know as late as Monday? I said okay. However, Monday came and went… and I heard nothing. (sigh) I figured he got busy with pre-vacation stuff and it wasn’t a go.
Tuesday morning, I was in a foul mood. I had gone from famine to feast with work, and while I always want work, my first reaction to getting a lot of it is OVERWHELMED. Plus my car had been making a very alarming loud noise and I had to bring it in to my mechanic. It was going to be a busy day. I hunkered down in full “I’m working I’m busy Leave me alone” mode… and then at 10 that morning, I got a text:
“I know this is last minute, but would you like to get together later this afternoon?”
Arrrggghhh. I wanted to slam my head into the desk. Yes, I would have liked to get together. Of course I wanted to play; it’s been two months already since I saw my Oregon friend.
But now, with my day planned and my head firmly geared toward getting things done?
Yeah, I know. A whole lot of people would have said, “Screw it, let’s move this, adjust that, blah blah blah, and just say YES.” But we’re not talking about the average normal person. We’re talking about neurotic me.
When would I do my work? When would I take my car in and Uber home? When would I do my workout? When would I shower and shave and put makeup on and tidy up the place? How long would he stay? We hadn’t discussed limits and boundaries — how long would that take? On and on and on it went until I was feeling like I’d just drunk 15 cups of coffee. Meanwhile, he was sitting at the other end, waiting for an answer to his text.
Politely and regretfully, I told him no, that I’d figured he couldn’t make it when I hadn’t heard from him and now I was slammed with work and other stuff. He understood. Said we’d have to plan something when he came back. He mentioned something about having bought a leather paddle, so he’s invested already.
But of course, I was left feeling really annoyed with myself. (“Why can’t you be more flexible?” “Why can’t you be more spontaneous?” “You could have said yes and made it work; why didn’t you?” “You just let life’s opportunities pass you by! What’s wrong with you?” In case you’re wondering, that critical voice sounds a lot like my mother.
However — I did make good use of the day. I got a ton of work done. I got my car into the shop. I did a killer workout and blew off all the aggravation. And then things turned around.
In my restless mood, I had gone on FetLife and written a status grumbling about how I’d said no to last-minute play and that adulting sucks, just to bitch a little and blow off steam. Got some fun commiserating comments. And then… I got a message from Mr. Woodland — remember him? We played several times in the past but hadn’t seen each other for a couple of years due to the pandemic and some other circumstances. He said he was sorry my plans fell through… and if I was interested in playing with him again sometime, please let him know.
Um. Well. Was I interested?
You bet your ass I was interested.
Long story short? I couldn’t do the spontaneous play thing, but now I have a play date for next Tuesday. grinning
Occasionally, life works. So, readers, would you have said yes to the last-minute play, or done the boring and uptight responsible adult thing? (And I say it that way because that’s what I did, so I’m allowed!)
Have a great weekend, y’all. Be safe. ♥