Day 182: Recover

So… it looks like I might have thrown away a somewhat important piece of paper that I need. And I couldn’t help it–after digging around the house and not finding it anywhere, that little, clutter-loving voice in my head piped up and said:

You see? What did I tell ya? That’s what happens when you go purging papers all willy nilly!

Now I’m not 100% positive that I tossed this particular document (a proof of insurance card, if you must know), and even if I did throw it away, it’s just as likely that I did so through some run-of-the-mill error, rather than as a result of a life-simplifying paper purge (I found two copies of one vehicle’s insurance card, but no card for the other).

But here’s the thing–the paper isn’t really that important. I am sure I can get a replacement card easily enough. But I’m over-tired today, and little things can start to add up pretty easily. And then I start heading down a path that’s hard to get off.

It probably started earlier today, when I got on the phone with the DMV to talk about what I needed to do to get a North Carolina license and transfer our vehicle registration. There were a few more steps involved than I thought, and since my registration expires in Georgia in just a couple of weeks, it looks like I am going to have to renew in Georgia (and pay Georgia taxes), and then register in North Carolina in August (and pay taxes once again).

Then it was off to the bank and the safe deposit box, where I encountered another hiccup: I found the car titles, which was good, but no copy of my wife’s birth certificate (just her expired passport). Now I know I wouldn’t have thrown away that document, but where it might be is anyone’s guess. So it looks like we might have another bureaucratic hurdle to overcome before we can get both of our driver’s licenses in order.

Discovering that I was missing an insurance card as well as the birth certificate was just the final little nudge to send me into a minor spin.

In truth, I’ve been much better this year than in the past, but historically, I have a tendency to head off to worse case scenarios pretty quickly. For instance: most of my financial worries, no matter how small, usually end with an image of me and my family living in a cardboard box. Talk about living simply, right?

But I’m getting better.

So tonight, when I felt myself starting to spiral downward, I tried to take action to help me recover.

And the first thing I did was start to write this entry.

And it helped.

The other thing that I did was to remember that I really only had to live the day in front of me, and deal with what this day has to offer.

So no, it looks like I don’t have that second insurance card. But I can call and get one tomorrow–so that’s one thing off my plate for today. The same thing with the birth certificate: a bit more of a hassle to replace, sure, but not an insurmountable challenge, should it come to that.

And yes, dealing with the DMV, transferring titles and registration, etc–all of that will be a hassle. But it is not today’s hassle.

Now I’m at the end of this entry, and waddaya know: I pulled out of a downward spiral and recovered pretty easily. And bonus points for completing this entry well before midnight: now I can get to bed a little earlier tonight–and recover some sleep!


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8 Responses to Day 182: Recover

  1. nrhatch says:

    Awesome save! Of your peace of mind.

  2. revdarkwater says:

    What nrhatch said!

  3. Julie Buhite says:

    I think it’s all part of the process and I think you’re doing a lovely job. Sometimes I’ve gone backwards in my simplifying and gotten rid of stuff I’ve regretted, but overall the rewards totally outweigh the inconveniences. I’ve also noticed that the simpler I got, the more I would lose stuff sometimes. Those were just temporary glitches, but again, part of the process. The great thing is that inconveniences can be fixed. I’m glad you pulled out of that spiral. Good work.

    • Mark says:

      Here’s the funny thing–today, I discovered that the “important” piece of paper really isn’t that important after all. I will need proof of insurance in my new home state, which means I will be getting a new proof of insurance card once I have officially established residence. So all that spiraling for nothing! But then again, isn’t every emotional spiral really “for nothing”?

      • Julie Buhite says:

        LOL. ๐Ÿ™‚ Still laughing. Yes, now that you mention it, every spiral really is “for nothing”. And to think of all the time and energy and joy my spirals have cost me.

  4. Lauren says:

    Two things:
    1. Not being able to find important things, no matter how replaceable, tends to send me into an absolute tailspin. Right before I went on vacation, I lost my keys (irretrievably, apparently). I spent the entire day in a complete abject panic. It wasn’t until my father calmly reminded me that keys are replaceable that I realized I was being insane. It’s funny how quickly we can lose perspective (and fortunate that there are people who can pull us out of our tailspins).

    2. Dan Harris wrote a book called 10% Happier about meditation in which he described that every time something financial or otherwise went wrong in his life, his thought process ended up with him living in a flophouse in Deluth. Your comments about living in a cardboard box reminded me of that. It’s a good book, if you happen to find room for it ๐Ÿ™‚

    • Mark says:

      Oh, too bad I didn’t see this comment before I hit the bookstore today–I still have some credit from all of those old books I traded in. Next trip out I will look for it!

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