Losing It

'I used to lose things all the time too. Then I had this zipper put in.'Usually I do not lose things, and in the rare instances this happens, I end up obsessing over the lost item, because I just don’t lose things. These days, I cannot find a single damn thing in my life, and I am rapidly descending from acceptance to infuriated.

It started last week, when I went to pay our movers for their second day of assistance and realized I had run out of checks in the checkbook. I thought I had been very careful about packing up financial stuff, knowing I would have need of that soon, but apparently I didn’t consider spare checks to be essential financial items, and I must have packed them with the rest of the items in the bookcase where they reside.

Do you know how many boxes in the garage are marked “Books”?

I ended up writing the checks out of my checkbook, which was in my backpack at work. So yesterday, when I went to pay my chiropractor, I naturally assumed my checkbook was in my backpack. It was not.

I have no idea where I went with it. I wrote the checks while I was at work and you would think, wouldn’t you, that I would just put my checkbook back in my backpack and leave it. But apparently I didn’t do that. I went through my desk at work. I have looked at home. I emptied out my backpack. It has vanished, and so, I just now realize as I look to where it belongs, has the checkbook for our joint account. So now, even if I find checks, which I really need to find before we get cut off from everything by everyone because I’ve made no payments in August, I don’t have the checkbook to record the payments. Nor do I have any idea at all how much money we have.

(Yes, I have Quicken, and I even use it sometimes, but that’s not my point.)

This morning I needed to go to Kara’s house to take care of her cats. I had diligently saved my instructions from the last time I did this — they were on the piano at the old house. I even had them on the piano here at the new house, until I decided to put them someplace safer so they wouldn’t get lost. And where are they now? Lost. I had to wing it, but the cats seemed okay with it.

The weirdest loss may have been theft. I drove to work the other afternoon (my bike plan has worked only one day so far, and it was work, let me tell you), and when I got in my car to go home, I noticed my sunscreen was missing. It was definitely there earlier, so either a gust of wind somehow managed to blow it out of the car and down the road out of sight, or someone took it. Theft seems weird, because nothing else was taken (my valuable tape measure and little ball of twine, both intact — later in the afternoon there was a lot of party food in the back, also left alone) and that’s just a really random thing to steal. But it’s gone, and I know this is one thing I didn’t misplace.

This is so annoying! Maybe losing things is annoying to anyone anytime, but I think it’s worse when it’s just not something you’re used to have happen in your life. Way back in our school years, my sister Terri told a teacher that I had an “organized mess,” which the teacher didn’t think was possible. But it is. I used to know what was in every heap, and could find anything I was looking for. Now . . .

Now I can’t find a damn thing. Well, we did find our way to enough party supplies to have a successful Pat’s corporate lunch on Wednesday, and I located our scissors by accident yesterday, including the ones I desperately need for my toenails, but I am still in no position to pay any bills, which seems like it ought to be an important thing.

So then the decisions start to kick in. Do I spend my weekend rooting through all the boxes in the garage to find spare checks? Do I dig through everything already unpacked in what already feels like another futile effort to locate checkbooks? Do I decide this is just how the rest of my life is going to go, give up and take a nap? If I can find my way to the couch, that is. I might just lose it.

Cat Update: We did end up taking Marrakesh to the vet yesterday, after he once again stopped eating. Good thing: his temperature was 106 (cats are normally 101). So he is still at the cat hospital, although his vet reports that his fever, which waxed and waned all evening, is now broken, and he is feisty enough to try to take on the cat in the neighboring cage (he punctured its fluid bag). She thinks it’s viral, something he carries around all the time that flares up during instances of stress. If that’s true, I might end up with his cat scratch fever. He’s been given antibiotics, just in case, and an anti-inflammatory, and he should be good to come home this afternoon, as long as his fever stays put.


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