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Hooked on Mary

I am addicted to Mary, my professional organizer and coach. She has helped get our ADHD household in order.

I have a secret. A shameful, embarrassing secret. I spent hundreds of dollars to get high. My drug of choice? Sessions with a professional organizer. Don’t laugh! I swear, the high was unbelievable! Unfortunately, as with many drugs, the high didn’t last. I’d beg, borrow — even steal — to get the feeling back again.

The knee-deep clutter my child with ADHD creates leads me to crave the extreme opposite: precise, militaristic, obsessive-compulsive order. I want every item in our house to have a designated space. I want containers that are labeled — in two spots — on the lid and on one side. The labels should be computer generated, not hand-written, with both the name and a color picture of the objects inside. I want the spot on the shelf where the container belongs to have a matching label. I want the containers themselves to match — or, better yet — be color coded, and to stack in perfect, symmetrical, pleasing order. I want…I want…I want…

As I drove home from work one day, I read the bumper sticker on the car in front of me: I went to my computer when I got home and checked out the website: Mary Sigmann, professional organizer. Jackpot! I scheduled a work session for the following week.

I had three sessions with Mary. Fast-paced, intensive work sessions. We tackled the basement, both kids’ rooms, several closets, and Nat’s craft area. The work was tiring, but oh-so-satisfying. Her approach to helping kids with ADHD is to reduce the amount of stuff they have, or at least the stuff they have out at any one time. We filled garbage bags. We put bags and boxes of stuff for Goodwill straight into the trunk of my car.

It’s been several months since my last Mary-fix. We’ve lost a lot of ground since then, but we’re still much better off than we were without her. If I could afford to, I’d have her come monthly. I can just picture what my house would look like!

I want my Mary…please, just a little Mary! I swear it’ll be the last time!

Where’s the car? I sold it to buy a little Mary…

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