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Damn it, stores, quit fucking with my mojo!

August 29, 2012

It happens too frequently for my taste. I walk into a department store that I regularly frequent, intent on getting specific items in specific places when it hits me: they’ve rearranged the entire store.  Nothing looks familiar, nothing is where it is supposed to be. What the hell? Who authorized this?

English: A child not paying attention in class.

English: A child not paying attention in class. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

I’ve made it known in the past that I have issues. Lots of issues. Some of my issues include ADHD with a side order of OCD. I believe that my OCD is directly related to my ADHD in that it came about as a way for me to add some type of order to a chaotic mind and, therefore, life. I was particularly bad in my teen years as I became very emotionally attached to certain rituals, believing that performing things in the right order at the right time would lead to the right results. In my case, the right results would be that I would not have bad luck or bad things happen.  What I didn’t realize was that a majority of what I perceived as “bad luck” was really just the results of my whacked out ADHD mind which seemed to almost purposely put obstacles in my path and set me up for challenges. Procrastination, impulsiveness, forgetfulness, inattention, moody outbursts; all of these things cause me a number of problems during those years (and beyond). Adding order in the form of regular rituals was something I used give myself a sense of power over the results.

In those days, my rituals consisted of performing morning tasks of getting ready for school in a certain order, watching Star Trek at the same time of day everyday, and carrying a yellow comb (an obsession requiring it’s own post).  Many of my teen obsessive behaviors were eliminated, or rather replaced, when I joined the Army where there were nicely organized routine and method of doing everything from folding underwear to killing a human being that neatly filled the OCD void.  After the military, I hung on to those routines for a while, but eventually replaced them with others.  I eat my M&Ms in certain color order.  I open packages from what I call the “correct end.”  I have routines that I stick to everyday in order to keep my life in some semblance of control.  When change occurs that throws those rituals out, I do feel a touch of anxiety, but I am able to recognize the feeling, understand the reason, and do my best to work through it.  Except the M&M thing… I have to end on the correct color or I have to get more and try again.

English: This SuperTarget is where the origina...

English: This SuperTarget is where the original Target store was opened in 1962; in 2005 it was torn down and replaced by this much larger store. Roseville, Minnesota, USA. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

That brings us back to the uncaring, changed department store. When I shop, I expect things to be where I left them. I depend on it for my very sanity. I’m already breaking routing by going out and shopping to begin with. Now, you have the nerve to put things in a whole new location? Don’t you know 1) that it really messes with me, and 2) that you are wrong? The way things were before was the correct way. Damn it! This happened a couple weeks ago when I returned, for the first time in a few months, to my old Target store. I walked in prepared to head to the department I needed and-

-immediately stopped dead in my tracks. “What the hell is this?” I actually blurted out. Everything had moved!  There were groceries in Electronics. Electronics were in the Toy and Fitness departments, and damned if I knew where the hell they’d hidden those departments.  The spousal unit had to grab me and pull me through the store for a bit as I looked around with an appalled gaze. I couldn’t wrap my head around this. Why would they do such a thing? It was fine the way it was. Now, it was all wrong. I was actually surprised by the intensity of my reaction.  I experienced a level of anxiety, while nowhere near as intense as the old days, was more than I had felt in a long time.  I couldn’t shop or focus. My ADHD was in full swing and I was all over the place, to the amusement of the spousal unit. Were it not for the fact that I ran into my brother and his wife at the same store, thus providing some familiarity to latch on to, I might have left without even buying what I had come for.

Sure I could sit back and further self-analyze, or even go back to the therapist that attempted to treat my ADHD, to get a handle on why I felt so strongly about what is known as the Target Incident. But that takes time and money. You know what else takes time and money? Changing around a store.  So, I have a solution that solves everything and saves dough all around:

STOP CHANGING THE STORES, STORES!

You’re really fucking with my mojo.

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