1320

The title of this post is the time I’m starting it. It’s amazing to me that I have until 1630 to leave the house, and I’m already chomping at the bit. COME ON! GET HERE FASTER! I’m not so good with the waiting. There’s a thousand things I could do in the meantime, but I’m also not good at keeping track of time. If I start a Project,™ like cleaning my room or organizing the directory system on my computer so that my photos from the last eight years aren’t all in the same folder, I run a great risk of forgetting…. “oh, hey. There’s work today.” I tend to underestimate how long things are going to take, and I don’t have a clock running in my head. Therefore, I have no idea when four hours have passed. When I’m writing, I have a fighting chance because I glance at the clock on my computer or tablet frequently.

I can hear you saying, “why don’t you just set alarms on your phone?” Because when I’m in the middle of something, the alarm goes off and I think, “I’m only five minutes from being done,” which is always a wild stretch of the imagination. It took me a long time to realize this about myself, which I mostly learned from being married to “the late Mrs. Lanagan.” I swear to Christ she would still be eating Cheerios in the bathtub 20 minutes before we had to be somewhere and I would just be sitting white-knuckled in the living room thinking, we should have left already. God almighty….

It was a true A-ha! moment when I realized I actually am good at showing up on time to things, but I have to pay attention. As someone with ADHD, I have to make allowances for the way my brain works, and do my best not to get distracted.

Especially as a people-pleaser, it embarrasses me beyond belief to be late, because even though I don’t take it personally when other people are late to meet me, or even a few minutes late to begin a shift, I’m worried that the other person will. My lateness is not a reflection of how important they are to me, but who I am as a person. So many people take lack of punctuality personally, as if I don’t know I’m wasting their time and am sick over it, because my respect for them wasn’t the issue here, Dude. I was on my way and “oh look, a chicken.” So, I go out of my way to try and ignore all distractions.

As a result, a lot in my life goes by the wayside, but I’m always on top of the things that really matter…. and by that I mean at some point I should hire a housekeeper. My living expenses are low and my hourly rate is high (for a cook, anyway), so perhaps if I truly get 40 hours a week it’s not inconceivable. Here’s the problem with that, though. If I get 40 hours in a week, my income will be too high for state-run insurance, and I’m not sure whether my employer provides it or not. So what I could have spent on paying someone to get my shit together, literally, will be going to the healthcare marketplace. I am not one of those people that can go without insurance and hope for the best…. most of the time, anyway. For a while, I didn’t have insurance in Portland, and it worked out okay because I was taking all generic medications on the $4 formulary at Wal-Mart, and everything else was covered by worker’s compensation. As a cook, it was 95% more likely that I’d get injured rather than sick…. and in the odd case when I was sick, it was cheaper to go to “Doc in the Box” (called ZoomCare in PDX) than it was to pay for insurance every month.

It’s been nice not to have to worry about any of that stuff since. It will be a load off my mind when the US finally goes to universal health care, because I think in my lifetime, it will. Otherwise, it will be time to formulate a plan to expatriate. There’s a reason there’s 17,000 gringos in Ensenada, Mexico…. although I think I’d have more fun eating in Oaxaca, and if my knees aren’t shot by then, taking a whirl in a Mexican kitchen just long enough to steal all the recipes for home use.

It’s 1408 now. Time for a coffee nap. This means loading up on caffeine so that when I wake up, I am ready to take on the world, one order of chicken tenders at a time.

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