As far back as my memories go I remember looking for rhythms, connections, lists, boxes and even equations that put things into a perspective that allows for my understanding of it. There’s a rhythm to almost everything we do or can expect as an outcome from something we do. I remember the most minute details from the most obscure happenings because of the connections they immediately made in my head. I’ve put everything in one list or another or in a box of some kind so that I know where to find it in my brain and where it should be in my life. I’m speaking figuratively of course. People who know me would tell you I’m completely disorganized in my outward life. It’s the world in my head that exists in this manner of organized craziness.
In times of major chaos in my life I’ve turned to mathematic breakdowns of the events surrounding me down to the most irrelevant details. (e.g. I can tell you the percentage of people who were wearing a watch in my first ever group therapy session at the age of 18.) I find these things comforting. The rhythms and mathematics don’t change. You can rely on them to remain undaunted by a bad day or change of heart or some form of emotional upheaval. Math is undeniably consistent. One plus one will always equal 2. 4/4 time will always be four beats per measure, from Mozart to Katy Perry to John Lennon.
Once a connection is made it is unbreakable. That connection is always there, even if you don’t wish it to be so. Once you love her she will always be someone you love(d). Once you meet him you will always have met him. Once your heart is broken it will always know what it is to be broken. Once you share your first dance they will always be the one who you first danced with. Once you hear a song and it makes you weep a place in your mind will always know that twinge of sadness when it hears those notes and lyrics. For me these connections also cause me to remember things I have no need to remember. I can tell you who most celebrities have worked with, lived with, married and divorced from and what performances of theirs I liked most. I can connect one author to another simply by a phrase repeated by one that I read by the other months or years prior. Words are possibly the strongest of connections for me. Once it’s said or written that connection is also never to be undone. Words are explosively powerful things, but more on that subject another time.
I suppose from this perspective I can adequately say that I find security in consistency.
The boxes in my mind come in to play when I need to sort through anything in my life, come to a new understanding of something or figure out how something went askew. I mentally unpack a box to see if what I believed to be one thing is really in that box of similar ideas or objects or if I need to fit it in to a different box. Everything has a box. People, places, times, memories, relationships, knowledge I have, knowledge I wish to have and the biggest box holds the contents of the life I dream to have some day. I’ve rearranged this box numerous times and tossed some contents out while adding others. In this case I suppose we all do. If I could give you a visualization of the boxes that support and hold the things I have tried to figure out in my life you might say I am a hoarder.
Lists. The all important lists. These exist everywhere in my world. They are both real and unreal. Necessary and unnecessary. Important and not. Accurate and absolutely not. Many times they contain the handbook of “life as I see it.” This includes: Lists of rules; rules I have for myself, rules others have put upon me, rules I put on others. Lists of hopes; Hopes for the ones I love, hopes for myself, hopes for day-to-day life, hopes for the future. Lists of needs; needs that must be met for myself by myself, needs that I need met by others, other’s needs I can meet and ones I cannot no matter how hard I try. And so on and so on.
It’s these things I have mentioned that keep a smoother rhythm in my life but, at the same time, also cause it to be so incredibly scattered. My mind seems to work like a processor. I evaluate every action, word, sound, response and feeling at every moment of everyday and place them into their correct location or at least the location that makes sense to me. Like a processor I’m considering these dozens of things at once at all times. Unlike a processor it overwhelms me to a point that I feel I must block out all thought by any means. For me this is not as easy as it is for some I have encountered as I do not do drugs of any kind nor do I find much pleasure in drinking very much or very often. I block out my thoughts with other people’s thoughts, as in books, movies and music. Many times I’m processing so many things I just need to talk and let them out, yet at the same time my words aren’t as fast as my brain and I start talking about one thing and five completely separate ideas later I have no idea what it was I had started talking about in the first place.
And there you have it; the disorderly organization of my messy mind. The rhythm and flow of life as I know it.
Welcome to my world.