06 March 2017

OCD vs My House

We bought our house and spent an imperial buttload of money renovating it to our exacting standards. It's been done for nearly two years, and yet I can't simply enjoy living there. Instead, I focus on the tiny little things that aren't perfect. Some are minuscule mistakes that anyone normal person wouldn't even notice. Some are game-day decisions to get around construction obstacles. Some are things we just plain didn't think about until after they were already done. The only thing they all have in common is they make me uncomfortable in my own house.

One of the major offenders is the living room ramp. There are three stairs between the dining room and living room area. Code requires that the risers are the same height across every stair. To accomplish this, there is a slight ramp at the bottom of the stairs.
There go my dreams of being a graphic designer.
The rest of the lower area (living room, powder room, and office) is all the same level. If we knew about this problem, and I convinced Matt to spend an extra five thousand on subfloor, we could have slightly raised the entire area. But we didn't, and now I have to live with it. Except I can't.

Every time I feel the slight incline under my feet, I get upset. Rationally, I know this isn't a big deal. I even measured the angle once, and it's only 0.2°. A negligible angle that most people don't even notice, while I spend hours ruminating over its existence.

Avoidance is a characteristic response of OCD. I, being the queen of avoidance, take a larger step at the bottom of the stairs to avoid treading on the offending ramp. I've done it so often that I don't even notice the altered gait going either up or down. Long term, such avoidance only perpetuates the cycle. For right now, it gets me through the day and through my house.

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