obsessive canned-good disorder

Have you seen Sleeping With the Enemy?  Julia Roberts, 1991, creepiest canned goods scene of all time???  If you haven’t, stop reading right now and go rent the movie…NOW!  Cause I’m about to spoil it for you.


The premise is that she’s married to a psychopath who is very abusive and also crazy OCD, so Julia fakes her own death just to get away from him.  She spends the rest of the movie setting up her new life and reveling in the fact that she can toss towels haphazardly on the rod and keep her cupboards and absolute avalanche-impending wreck.  The final scene(s) of the movie show her with a really uneasy feeling walking through her house.  She turns on some music, and it happens to be the psycho ex-hubby’s creepy favorite song.  She looks at the towel rod and all the towels are folded equally and hanging completely level.  And the clincher – and this still sends chills down my spine – she opens the cupboard (which, earlier that evening was a complete mess) and all the canned goods are stacked evenly with the labels facing forward.  It’s TERRIFYING!  Don’t believe me?  Click here.


I know you’re wondering why I’m talking about a twenty year old movie.  No, I didn’t just see it recently…I lived it.  And (embarrassingly) not in the way you’d think.


As I get older, I’m becoming more and more of a neat freak.  Not in a Howie Mandel germaphobe sort of way, but in an “a place for everything and everything in its place” sort of way.  My house would never pass a white glove test – in fact, I don’t remember the last time I dusted or did the windows.  But 98% of the time, there is no clutter, no mess, no junk on the floor or piled on the counter.  And that other 2% of the time is starting to freak me out.  Seriously.  Clutter actually causes me anywhere from medium to severe anxiety.


my pantry

So, since we have doubled the number of people who live in our house this past month, we’ve also doubled the amount of food we keep on a regular basis.  Both the fridge and the pantry were overflowing.  And it was seriously freaking me out.  Every time I would walk in the pantry to get a breakfast bar or a Dr. Pepper, my heart rate would increase and I’d have to take a few deep breaths.


Yes.  I recognize that this is probably not normal.  I also feel it’s of the utmost importance to express that this seems to genuinely only bother me in my own home.  So don’t freak out – unless you’re a candidate for Hoarders, your house will not cause me to have a panic attack.


Anyway, the point of my little OCD confession here is this:  I spent just about 45 minutes yesterday totally reworking the pantry and now it makes my whole heart happy.  Seriously, I’m pretty proud of this.  And yes…all the labels are facing forward.