Anyone who knows me and knows me well will probably tell you that one of my biggest character flaws is that I can be a bit of a control freak. It manifests itself in little ways, both positive and negative, but never so much as when something unpleasant and unexpected happens. Typically, I can take these types of surprises in stride, even if my insides are flipping out, but this past week, through a series of unfortunate, maddening, confusing, and anxiety inducing events, I was pushed to the limit.
Let’s back up a bit. If you follow me on Twitter, you know a little bit of what has been going on with my apartment, but the broader back story is this: I arrived home on Tuesday night, exhausted, thinking about what I needed to get done that evening, to find a letter taped to our front door. It turns out it was an eviction letter from our landlord. I was shocked — we always pay our rent on time — why would we be evicted? After I read through a bunch of confusing legal jargon and citations of different legal code in the letter, I hopped online and figured out that we were being evicted because she wanted to move in to our place. Obviously, I completely freaked out. In that moment, with everything else on my plate, the thought of trying to find a new apartment in 60 days in what is NOT a renter’s market was just too much. All those little what if questions flooded into my brain. You can imagine what it was like.
I didn’t sleep a wink Tuesday night and had knots in my stomach all Wednesday morning. Joe and I quickly started trying to arrange showings of different apartments, but were not excited to learn that to get something comparable to what we currently have, our rent would be increasing by almost 70%. Yikes. Then, in a really strange, confusing twist of events, the landlady called Joe during the middle of the day and said SURPRISE, JUST KIDDING. I actually don’t feel like moving into your place anymore! Instead, I’m just gonna sell the whole building! And I’m also not going to apologize for the ordeal I’ve put you through for the last 18 hours!
You are obviously starting to get a clearer picture of the kind of person we’re dealing with.
So now we’re in the interesting situation of, well, not knowing what the hell is going on. We’re inclined to just wait it out in our current apartment, see if she gets a buyer for our three unit building (she’s already planning to show it in the next few days), and then, feel out the new landlord, who hopefully will be slightly more, um, rational.
For a person like me who thrives on understanding a situation and then making a clear, organized plan around it, it’s a little tough for me to not feel anxious about the whole thing. But, it was also a great lesson that I really can’t control everything, and if I continue to let that get the best of me in times like this…well, it’s not good. I felt like my entire day yesterday was shot. I was so sapped of any kind of focus or creativity, just worrying, worrying, worrying. And how is that productive? It’s not. I kept thinking to myself, “I really don’t have time to be this anxious about this whole situation.” Because I don’t! So I have to learn to let go. LET GO. It’s going to be okay. Really. Seriously. It’s all going to be okay. Do you ever have to remind yourself of this?
I’m feeling a bit better today, with the help of lots of deep breaths, some stretching, great support from friends and family, and lots of wine last night. Somehow, the combination of those four things will allow anyone to just let it all go.