There are different ways to solve a problem.
All throughout high school and college, I was always the first one to finish exams. I think fast and write fast, mostly for the fear of forgetting if I don’t jot everything down quick. Also, so I could be dismissed early.
Math exams were different however. Our maths teacher was intent on finishing the 45-minute time slot and dismissing us altogether. That did not sit well with me, pun intended. I couldn’t stand sitting in one place doing nothing. FML, I’m wasting my life sitting here.
As a result I would provide at least three different solutions all leading to the same answer. One item would still only be worth one point, though. It would drive the teacher crazy that I would use all the white space available in the paper, but I can only blame her too. If she had dismissed me earlier this would never had happened.
I wonder what my neurosis is, I mused. The family line seems to have some sort of neurosis, one way or another, so I feel left out not having one. My mother is a neat and organized freak, while my sister is obsessed with sanitizing her hands with alcohol every five minutes (she likes alcohol in general) and my father is neurotic about his lecture slides. My younger brother is the most normal person I know, but I’m sure I’m neurotic about something. Society finds a need to name everything into a disorder, after all. There’s bound to be one for me.
Then it hit me.
While the people I know have one right way of doing things, I have none. I refuse to have one. It’s that fear of routine, fear of doing the same thing, the same way all over again.
I’m no ‘creature of habit’ who gravitates towards the same shops or restaurants. I like wandering myself into secret finds at obscure spots. I’m the one who says: ‘yeah the sushi place was nice, but maybe we can try the ramen place beside it this time?’
It’s the kind of neurosis where even if you know the best route to a destination, you choose a different route ‘just because’.
It’s even if you excelled at maths in high school and was recommended into Chemical Engineering or Accountancy, you decided to take up Fine Arts instead.
It’s having five different ways to getting home. Ten different ways to wear a scarf. Four different ways to fold your clothes. Six different ways to calculate a basic derivative of a function.
It’s having curly hair, straight hair, wavy hair, short hair, long hair, mid-length hair, brown hair, black hair, blonde hair, hair with streaks and messed-up hair. If the school allowed it, I would’ve had blue hair by now. It’s not caring about your hair because they grow out anyway.
It’s that even if you know you hate fish and chips, you’ll still have it because you might like it this time around. (you still won’t, but maybe next time?)
It’s relishing the fact that you’re celebrating your 25th alone in Moscow Sheremetyevo Airport because it probably won’t happen again.
It’s preferring to remain unstable but take control of your time and freedom rather than having a routine 9-to-5 job.
For this kind of neurosis, it’s never say never.
It’s knowing there are many different means to an end. We know the number of Pi, but there are four different ways of calculating it.
It’s hating to be ‘left out’ or ‘missing out’. If you didn’t try it another way, or seeing it from another angle, you might be missing half your life. Who would’ve known there are a dozen different ways to cook an egg, if they didn’t try, right?
I blame maths for a lot of things, such as my bad handwriting. And my new neurotic disorder.
This self-diagnosis is not to be taken seriously. If, however, there is still no name for this neurosis I would like to name said disorder in behalf of myself because it’s my birthday today. 🙂