I believe in color-coding. There’s something comforting about it; aesthetically pleasing. My closet is color-coded and I love seeing every article of clothing hanging in its own place. Color-coding keeps my life organized. You can call it obsessive compulsive but it saved my sanity; disorder makes me itch.
I first discovered color-coding when I was five or six and had inherited a plastic crayon box from a sister who was too old for coloring. This box was clear and had sixty separate, individual compartments for each crayon. One day, having gotten bored with coloring, I turned to organizing my crayons. Hours later every blue, aqua, turquoise, blue-green, and green-blue had its place. I was so proud of myself; I needed to show off my hard work. .I ran immediately to show my mother and she humored me with praise but I think she may actually have been a little scared. This was also the point in time I remember my mother starting to use the words “marches to her own drum” to describe me, her youngest daughter.
Color-coding does more than just mollify my anal-retentiveness, it also focuses my thoughts. The actual task of color-coding in its simplicity is somewhat cathartic. So much of life is confusing and rushed through; taking the time to stop and put everything in its place provides a break from the chaos. So little of life can be made sense of, every chance to make sense of it should be taken, no matter how seemingly insignificant.
If you enjoyed this essay, please consider making a tax-deductible contribution to This I Believe, Inc.