i have a confession to make. no's not that while families all over the south have watched everything they own float off into the wild blue yonder and are left soakin wet with nothin but nothin i was havin a hissy without my high speed cable for two days. yes i am guilt ridden that though i rigged some dial up together my need for speed still left me feelin the love of my life had abandoned me without notice and even more guilt arrived when i realized that my pixel pilin thoughtlessness toward those using less than high speed cable meant they had to endure enough time to fix up some lunch and pick the kids up at school while waitin for one half of one of my pages to load. maybe i would have written a long please don't hate me because i'm spoiled blog about that if pac bell hadn't finally gotten around to fixin their server so my life could proceed as planned...but they did so i will bottle all that guilt up and save it for another day.

today's confession....i'm a pig. you wouldn't know this by lookin at me out of my pen and with just a bit of notice, probably not if you came by to visit me cause after livin with this deep dark secret for my whole life i have just about mastered the art of hidin it when necessary. so much so that i am often called upon to help others figure out ways to organize their own pens. see...they think i am an expert at ORGANIZIN when the fact is i have become an expert at DISGUISIN. and the reason they are always impressed with my knowledge of containers and such for settin a pen up is because i have tried them all in my effort to get and keep my pen under control. see - my biggest problem is that i'm a pig who likes everything to be perfectly neat all the time. this is a difficult problem to solve cause i can start the day off in perfectly neat surroundins and by nightfall there will not be enough floor left available to walk a straight line...the only way to get to the door is to hop from open spot to open spot (tinker has gotten used to her head jerkin back and forth during the ride). this makes it quite difficult to check and see if mini can make it out of her pen so we can spend some quality time together. see - she too is a pig.

i come from a long line of pigs. jo says she is not one of em but it's hard to tell. she can see us headin across the yard her way and all she has to do is turn the fan on high and wave the dustbuster over her head a few times while sitting on the banquette for her trailer to look neat. and when she is in my pen she sure has no problem lettin things drop hither and yon so i think she did indeed get some of the pig blood. my brother and sister are neat freaks so the gene seemed to skip them altogether.

growin up, sharin a room with queenie, there was a wall with two closets with slidin doors - one for each of us. queenie had everything perfectly hung up, all the hangers facing the same direction, shoes all in neat boxes and the shelf above stocked like a department store before the doors open. she could get dressed with no problem no matter where she was off to cause she had everything ready to pick from. my closets doors were never on the track so i could climb in on one side and use it sort of like my own private dressin room. most everything was in a pile on the floor - so much easier than havin to take it off a hanger if it was what i wanted to iron to wear. the shoes were mixed in to the pile so no need to open boxes but i must admit i could sometimes find only the left one or the right one. but i was always in a panic about runnin late while queenie would already be on her way.

when i was in college i arrived home from dinner one night to find my suite mates had moved all my belongins out into the hall. they had tried paintin a yellow stripe around what was designated as my area but it just wasn't enough to keep me in my pen. i do believe the only reason the sorority i joined let me stay livin with em was they needed an artist in residence - and i had the most boyfriends. they could always count on me for paintin somethin at the last minute for their appointed little sister or get em a date with some of my overflow.

i have lived in fear most of my life that someone would look in my purse. i'm sure there have been many a time i appeared to be luggin around illegal substances of some kind my the way i cling to my handbag and when the need for openin it occurs, i do so only enough to retrieve whatever is needed. it is what i would call a mini pig pen. for a time i had considered goin to one of those tapins of the ellen show but recently she has been haulin peoples bags along with her as she dances through the audience during the first part of the show and with the way my luck has been goin, she'd grab mine and my mini pen would be exposed on national t.v.

the thing is there's seldom anything i need in my bag. when it gets so bad i can't take it any more, i find i can remove my driver's license, my one credit card and lipstick tube and then shake the whole thing right over the trashcan and start over. sometimes if it's really bad - like if i stuff a half eaten bag of M&Ms in and forget to smush up the openin and they spill and then it's really hot outside and they melt all over everything, i have to just pitch the whole thing and start over. mini's backpack is the same. i can go through it and know everything she has eaten while at school as there are little bits of it all stuck in some pocket....if i am really desperate for a snack late at night and am too fearful of the kitchen critters for a trip downstairs, i always dig in her backpack first for a small morsel to do the trick.

my piggish ways have made me very unhappy durin my life. i just could never figure out how to change them and always deemed myself a failure because of them no matter how much i succeeded at everything else i decided to do. it's amazin that i have achieved so much while failin my fight with this debilitatin problem. and since people have no patience or understandin for piggish people, it was always somethin i felt i had to hide because if it was discovered, i would be revealed as a big ol fraud overall.

i wasn't diagnosed as havin ADD until about eight years ago. it wasn't that no one ever noticed that i was different - every doctor i had ever visited my entire life had tried to cram a prescription for some calmin potion into my tightly closed handbag so i might relax a bit. but i have never been interested in relaxin. there was just too many things i needed to get done. and since i always figured out a way to do em, it seemed my only problem was findin em once i finished. but once i was diagnosed it seemed to make a bit more sense to me and i became a bit more forgivin of my piggish ways and tried not to be so hard on myself. but readin up on bein gifted with ADD didn't give me much in the way of answers for turnin every place i went into my own personal pig pen.

i finally got more answers when my mini was diagnosed as havin received more of my genetic make-up than i had planned to pass on to her. in fact, when all our tests are put next to each other, it appears that the very same person took em all. my doctor never bothered explainin what each one meant and how it would effect me as is often the case when someone is assigned the dreaded diagnosis of ADD. some poor parent new to all this mumbo jumbo and already horrified at bein told their child is not perfect can't be blamed for not delvin into the matter to the degree i have ended up doin so. by the time my mini was diagnosed i had a long list of questions ready to go. the fact is there are so many things that fall under the name of ADD and it is amazin how many answers lie within each of em. one of the answers i found helped me understand my need to create pig pens everywhere i am.

if i had only known all that time sittin and starin at that wall with those two closets and wonderin why my side looked so different from queenie's and why it was such a struggle for me to pull it all together and so easy for her, that the answer was all in my genetic make-up! i just didn't have what it took to come up with and then follow a plan for keepin my area organized. i could've spent all that time diggin through queenie's locked up little bank shaped like a house or lookin for her diary instead of beatin myself up so.

i think there are lots of people who have piggyness in their inherited genes and don't even know it. i often read blogs of other moms who are beatin themselves up for not doin all the things they think they need to be doin or want to do and i think that maybe they just need to find some extra tools to help em succeed. and maybe if they knew it wasn't their fault, they'd be so much nicer to themselves. and i shudder to think about all the poor children who are judged as lazy when they are tryin their best but they just need to be taught some tricks to help em get the job done. my mini's IQ is so high she is rated up there with the smartest of humans....but if you just got a glimpse of her locker, you'd think there was no hope for her. before i understood how to help her, she could never find the papers she needed for class and was feelin bad about herself. she'll never have a clean locker but now that she has a big ol pocket attached to the inside of the locker door to throw the important things in, she gets her assignments in on time.

i'll always have to hop around at the end of the day but now that i know that and accept it i have figured out ways to disguise the mess from myself so i can keep functionin until i stop and get everything back in order so i can mess it up again. my biggest tool is in todays blog view. see, once i got my most favorite problem solver in the world, my drill, i was able to set the doo dad den up just like i needed it to be. and i have done so in a way that when somethin doesn't work for my piggyness anymore, i just put the drill in reverse and figure out somethin that will work. in these shots you'll see i have these counters (actually hollow doors) all around the doo dad den that underneath can be crammed full of a little of everything....but no one has to know but me and jo cause i dressed everything up in cute skirts! since most people with ADD are movin so fast from one thing to the other stoppin to open a drawer is impossible, i use open baskets and mason jars for everything so i can just carry the whole thing to where i'm working and it's easier to put things back where they belong. and when i'm pickin up the big ol mess, i can just pitch things back into their containers without havin to remove a lid or pull open a drawer. i screw the ring thing on the jars just so it looks like there's a lid but i leave the flat metal part off.

i keep all my art supplies divided in batches by color and paint their containers to match the batches. i took these shots in the middle of a cleanathon so i don't think everything is labeled but normally everything is - that way it's easier for jo to help me clean without her havin to ask me where each little doo dad goes. in the doo dad den bathroom, i use painted terracotta flower pots for everything. and that stuff you see on the floor are floor cloths - the only way for a piggish artist to keep from ruinin nice hundred year old wood floors. they work so well i have even painted em for fancier rooms and they are often mistaken as bein original to the house.

so...just thought i'd share my deep dark secret with you and hope maybe there was some piggish person readin who might know they are not alone. maybe there's somethin i've learned the hard way that i can pass along to make their life a little easier. jo is always sayin if people were more honest with each other about their shortcomins we'd all feel better about ourselves and i told her if she'd shut up naggin me about wantin her own gallery for real life stuff to be posted i'd do more of it here in the blog. i think i've bought myself some more time although mini said this afternoon she was gonna help jo start her own blog so i'm not sure. we'll know shortly!

i am still not bloggin as regularly as i want - the bandits set me back quite a bit and then the loss of that high speed cable was another blog stopper. but once i get caught up on all those doo dads i promised i should be bloggin daily again. i am still behind in the emails and the verifyin info for people wantin to join the fun over at the moland mall but i will slowly get all that accomplished soon so don't give up on me yet!

thanks for stoppin by and i hope to see you back here soon!


Robin said...

now me, i don't have ADD and i cannot think of any way to describe what it is goin on in my head when i wander the house like my blind dog, Angel. (now that is another sad story for another day; my poor blind hopelessly confused dog) i swear it wasn't always like this.....well those golden years must have something to do with it. (for both of us) i mean...... i just this mornin took some photos of my "art" room to document the fact that even if i don't get anything done in there i sure do have a sweet setup. sometimes the only thing i can say is I'M READY! i once described this condition i have as 'art fright'; as in stage fright. so now whenever i have spent hours up here in my room and come up with not a thing to really show for it my family can say "oh you must have had a case of art fright, poor thing."

love the insiders view of your den! And mo i am a therapist and help out all those hapless people who have spent most of their adult life goin around saying "what the heck is wrong with me" so i do sympathize. with your past predicament. and i will make a point of passin on your secret coping tool to my electric drill. no need for therapy once they have that little nugget of wisdom eh!?

Tracy said...

Amen -- I hear you sister, loud and clear. I would have replied earlier, but I had to find the mouse....


Jess said...

Thanks for sharing your doo dad den pics!! I plan to copy some of your tricks in mine too!

Anonymous said...

Well Golly Darn! Is that what's wrong with Me?

I seem to have what Mo has and then to top it off I guess I have a severe case of Artist Fright.

I like the collecting part of all my "hobbies". But I never seem to be able to "do" anything after I get them all collected.

Thanks Mo for the peek into "The Doo-Dad Den.

I will have to do some research on ADD.

Judy from Upstate NY

Jan said...

Oh, Mo -- your entry brought tears to my eyes. It's an issue that's been a bit of a sore spot in my life, seeing as my own parents have gone so far as to lecture me about my need to clean things up, "for the sake of the children". But they judge me by their standards, and not by own condition: ADD is not the only condition prone to piggishness, you see -- so are the many varieties of depression and bipolar illness. I remember finding out about 8-10 years ago that I was not alone in the struggle to keep things tidy, when I was moderating a internet bulletin board on depression. It slowly dawned on all of us that we were struggling with the same problem; no matter how deep-seated our desire for order, we lacked the will, focus, and energy to do anything about it. Our internal joke became that our fondest gift for ourselves and each other would be lifetime maid service! I've since come to understand, especially since the doctor decided about 5 years that I really fall into one of the bipolar categories, that it is part of the way the mind works with many of these illnesses, and the only ones who really understand are either those who also suffer, or those who love us deeply. Thankfully, I have at least one of the latter in my life, though I went through my fair share of those who never even tried to understand. It's very painful when your own parents won't even try to understand your illness, which probably explains in part why I haven't spoken to either of them for most of the last 18 months.

I prefer the clear plastic boxes with lids, myself. They stack and label nicely. And the ones I've had the drive to finish serve me well. But there are many more waiting to be filled. If only I had the type of bipolar that was prone to the manic episodes of great energy! ;-) (I don't really wish that, but I have to find some humor in the whole thing somewhere!)

I just read an article the other day in the newspaper, about clutter being a national problem these days, due to the increased affluence and our various collective reasons for acquiring more stuff. It didn't make me feel a whole lot better, though. What I really want is understanding, and absent that, tolerance -- from the scores of friends, employers, parents, and others who won't take the time to see the good we're able to do in spite of this shortcoming, and who look at it as a character problem instead of the symptom that it is.

Funny, too, how these illnesses seem so often to go hand-in-hand with creativity, isn't it?

Thanks for sharing, and for reminding me I'm not alone.

Anne alias Purrceyz said...

Hi Mo,

As I think I've told you..I myself have ADHD. I understand by what you mean about 'hiding it'; I've tried to do this most of my life (people who know me well see through it though). I read a couple of books that really helped me understand why I never wanted people over to my house (especially unexpectedly!), "Women with ADD" and "Moms with ADD" (unfortunately lent them both to another woman with ADD who hasn't returned them....)

As I've gotten older (I'm almost 50), I begun to make peace with my ADHD. (Although I'm still waiting for the book "Moms of kids with autism who have ADHD themselves"--I've met a number of women in the same boat as me.)

In our family; we joke that I'm the only ADDer; Graham has severe autism and both my husband and daughter have Asperger's tendencies (although not quite enough for a diagnosis.) My daughter did tell me that it was good having her own room at university (which she keeps very neat) but the other kids are slobs ...think she'd be used to it..)

I laugh at the professionals who I encounter (in conjunction with my son) who tell me I'm organized! just because I've managed to have a public facade of organization (it only took my 2 years to get those documents into the binder!.

It's not been easy having a son who needs structure to cope with structure is so difficult for me.

I look at my ADHD as a mixed blessing...people with ADHD are some of the nicest, most creative and enthusiastic people I know.

BTW, I got a special mention at my graduation dinner for having tghe messiest locker in the school, so mini isn't alone.

I appreciate your honesty in writing and your suggestions as to what has helped you.


Trish said...

Thank you Mo, for your honesty! Know that you are definitely not alone in the pigginess struggles. I tend to blame my messies on episodes of overactive creativity, but I do know that I come by it genetically. I can so relate to the open containers. I need labeled containers for everything! Poor hubby doesn't understand. Perhaps I can share your cute doo dad den with him and he will get it (or he will just think that I have discovered another crazy messy person like myself!) Anyway! Thanks for sharing! We do all need to be honest and stick together!

sue said...

Honestly, I still think my problem is that I just don't have enough closet space. One of these days I'll have to face facts and admit I am a messy and that I need there a 12 step program out there for me?

ShyDigiScrapper said...

Sing it sister!

hollie h said...

You know the joke cans with the snake that pops out...yeah, those are my closets and drawers. I just pretend I'm neat.

Wigglywourms said...

I can so relate. I'm another piggie. People think I'm organized...I just laugh and my husband laughs even louder...LOL. If they only knew ;o) I SOOOO want to be organized. IKEA's website is in my favorites and I can plan things out and dream of how organized I'd be if I could only afford this shelving unit or that cool set of containers.

Thanks for sharing the photos of your doodad den. I'm going to have to try the baskets and jars 'cuz I love those. Do you think my DH will notice if I steal his electric drill? I'll probably loose it before he'll get it back...hehe. I just told someone yesterday that the problem with our new house compared to our old one is that there isn't as many hiding places for all of my stuff.

Just wanted to thank you for letting me know that I'm in good company with my pigginess!


Marie said...

mo, thank you for sharing! I am just the same way!!! I never equated it with a form of ADD but I have certainly questioned that route. My fine doctor prescribed some fine med's but they don't solve the problem. Thankfully, I have a husband who covers me when the house gets really bad. My in-laws have learned to keep their mouths shut but you can see the disapproval on their faces when they walk in once a month and wonder'd what I do with my time between caring for 3 lovey's, playing taxi-mom, chef and reader extraordinaire!!!!! I scrap of course!!! I need art and I need to create in order to stay a
sane...and that is just the way it is. thank you for sharing one of your traits mo, there are a lot of people out there that are the same way and we appreciate your candor! have a good one mo.

"mini mo" said...


"mini mo" said...

i dont like flash class...

Maggie said...

Ohmygosh mo, I wish I had read this before the holidays :). I deal with the same weakness. I would rather spend my time creating something than organizing any day. Trouble is when I do have to get in and get it organized so I can find my favorite things to work with, in one day it is already out of order. I feel so fortunate to have found someone who understands as my dh doesn't but he doesn't say anything (good BillyBob). Thanks for sharing and now I don't feel so bad about myself. Someone mentioned that people like us are the creative kind :), thanks to whoever said that. That is what I like to do. Love to all!