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Okay, first, before I write anything else, I have to ask:

Does anyone prefer orange Popsicles? I keep wondering why Popsicle companies always insist on putting orange ones in. The other flavours may be raspberry, or strawberry, or grape, or pomegranate or something, but there is always, always orange. Like, it seems like 50% of the Popsicles end up being orange in any given package. Why?? They are the least exciting flavour. They are the ones that always get left for last. People rummage for the red ones and the purple ones, and only start on orange once all the good flavours are gone. Ditto for orange suckers, when it comes to that.

Maybe it’s because they want you to run through the box faster, and buy more. You think you’re getting 14 Popsicles, but once you’ve eaten 8 or so, you realize that all that is left is orange ones, and after a couple of days of half-hearted eating you go and buy a new box. But surely any brand that sold grape-only, or red-only, would rocket to the top of the charts as the most popular brand?

These are the things I think about.

Another thing I’ve been thinking about – why am I finding it so much harder than some of my group-mates in facing my anxieties?

The only answer I really have is that unlike some of my fellows, who are terrified of talking to their ex-wives or abusive relations, or who avoid driving because they are afraid of car crashes… I don’t have any stressful situations which I am avoiding. Instead, my avoidance is the cause of most of my anxieties. Cleaning the house doesn’t make me anxious. NOT cleaning the house makes me anxious. Writing in my diary doesn’t make me anxious. NOT writing in my diary makes me anxious. So, I’m supposed to be doing things that will make me anxious, so I can tolerate the uncertainty. But I’m also supposed to start doing the things I’ve been avoiding doing. So should I clean the house, or see how long it takes before it resembles an episode of Hoarders?

Because it’s totally all the things that I’m avoiding doing that are making me anxious. And then I begin to associate the things on my mental to-do list with the anxiety that thinking about them all the time causes, and then that makes me avoid them more. Which makes them build up into bigger problems. Which makes me… you guessed it… more anxious. Like, the more I stress about being late for work, the later I end up being, because stressing about being late for work makes me avoid getting ready. It’s really, really stupid.

When I think back to the times in my life when I have been happiest, it has been times  when my to-do list has been pretty small. I love being on trips because I don’t have to worry about cleaning the house or washing the dishes. I can just have fun and be on vacation.

But when stuff builds up like this, it becomes a vicious cycle. All the stuff becomes overwhelming, so I avoid dealing with it, and it becomes more overwhelming, so I avoid doing it more, which makes it worse. And now it’s hard to feel any kind of joy at all because the weight of all the things I have to do are pressing down on me all the time, and some part of my brain is constantly going, “don’t forget to look for that missing DVD. Don’t forget to trim your dog’s nails. Don’t forget to sweep – look at all that dog fur. Don’t forget, you have to get printer ink so you can print your resume. Don’t forget, you need to preserve those torches. Don’t forget, you still need to install baseboards around the house. Don’t forget…”

I’m supposed to write my worries, but they aren’t worries so much as endless thoughts about the things I’m not doing.

So, here they are, for the world to see. You can all help me not forget.

  • Groom Beloved Dog
  • Clean floors
  • Throw away or organize clutter (Perfect Husband got a great start on this last weekend, when he went into the Baby’s Room aka The Room Full of The Boxes We Haven’t Unpacked Since We Moved Last August and Cat Litter) and spent a whole day sorting through the junk. You can actually see the floor!)
  • Wash dish rack
  • Do laundry
  • Figure out why there is laundry under the bed and deal with that, too
  • Figure out where that smell in the bathroom is coming from and eradicate it
  • Figure out where the missing DVD went
  • Buy stands for the torches
  • Buy book case/entertainment unit for the living room
  • Buy stuff to fix the soot on the torches because I keep worrying that it’ll all rub off
  • Get house measured
  • Get baseboards
  • Get baseboards installed
  • Finish painting the house
  • Paint the baby’s room
  • Buy new eye glasses
  • Clean car
  • Turn up the earth in the garden
  • Get sod for garden
  • Get outdoor planters
  • Get plants for said planters
  • Get small charcoal barbecue
  • Pick up patio set from friends who have offered us said patio set
  • Frame pictures needing to be framed
  • Hang framed pictures
  • Call friends who think I’m dead
  • Write in diary regularly so I can worry there instead of worrying about how I need to go and write backlogs
  • Write backlogs in diary
  • Get hair cut
  • Go swimming regularly
  • Get psyched for our upcoming trip to New York
  • Tell my mother about our upcoming trip to New York

That’s all I can think of for now, but I know there’s more. I’ll let you know when I think of it.

Aren’t you excited?