Yesterday afternoon, the cafeteria prefect at the school asked if it would be okay if she hurried my son along after he finishes his lunch. It turns out, that while I’m busily working 40 feet away, he is dilly-dallying through clean up.
Kids can’t be dismissed until their area is tidy and although my son stays well into the next lunch period and gets back to class later than anyone else, he still feels the need to take his things to the trash can…one by one.
First it’s the straw wrapper, then he walks around the entire row of tables to get his straw, then his milk carton, then his tray, then his napkin. I don’t think he’s stalling. I think it’s just an aspect of his OCD.
I will be the first person to say that he gets his compulsions naturally. Between me, my mother and my mother-in-law you could lay our compulsions end-to-end and circle the earth. Twice.
My mom took her dog for a walk the other day and told me that she went 845 steps. Then she went on to say that if she had gone around the block she would have taken over 1000. She doesn’t wear a pedometer. She also has a morning routine that you do not want to mess with. Trust me. I’m more of a have-to-have-the-dishwasher-loaded-correctly or laundry-has-to-be-folded-nicely-and-put-away-neatly kind of chick. So, you really can’t call me odd.
A true compulsion would be if I reloaded the dishwasher every time someone else tried to do it, so I would know that all of the forks were tines up, all of the sharp knives were pointing down, all the ceramic dishes were on one side and all the plastic ones on the other and that all of the cooking utensils were in the top rack. Or, if I went back to the drawer where I had just put away laundry in order to make sure it hadn’t folded over on itself. Not that I would know anything about that.
I mean, it would probably seem as if I had issues if I did something like say the exact same thing to my daughter every single night before she goes to bed and give her four kisses on her forehead. It would be stranger, still, if the words I uttered to her were the exact same ones my mother said to me as a child.
Or, if I also gave my son four kisses each night and rubbed the back of his furry little head in the spot where I first touched him as a baby.
I’m certainly not crazy! I don’t line up my shirts by color, or always cough twice, or crack my neck, or constantly rub my chin to see if another gray hair has popped out. Oh wait…
Now that I think about it, my son is doomed.