Wednesday, July 15, 2009

I see me

Miss told me about a show called Obsessed and suggested I watch it. I watched one episode and almost cried. Because I saw myself on this show. I may not have the exact OCD tendencies that these people have, but I know how they feel. I know that overwhelming feeling that I HAVE to do something. Not have, oh no, have is something you can change, you can say maybe later or let someone else do it. No it’s HAVE, because I can’t not do it, if I don’t do it something horrible may happen, if I don’t do it everything can end. Everything can and will end.

It’s hard to explain to people what it is like living with OCD. For me, I worry about anything that can go wrong in everything that you do. I can come up with 100 things that can go wrong between my front door and wherever I’m heading to. I worry about if I left the curling iron on, and how that can burn down my house and every individual item in it (I go through a list of items), how it will burn the next house then the next and the next, eventually burning down the entire town. How, many people would die because I accidentally left my curling iron on. I worry about if the doors are locked and the many different scenarios that can happen because of it. I worry about Bo driving to and from work, about Bailey staying with my parents, about us choking on our food, accidentally overdosing on meds, on and on and on. Imagine taking a pop bottle and putting a marble into it. Now shake that sucker and make the marble ricochet around the bottle, circling around and around the inside. The bottle is my head and the marble is a thought, except its 1000 marbles. One thought creates another and another and another and they keep going until I can find something to stop them. Stop them from seizing my body and immobilizing me with panic. Sometimes this is easy, sometimes not. It all depends on the day, my location and if I’m alone.

I’ve talked to people who say well why don’t you just think about something else or just don’t think about it. That’s like not breathing. Not feeling the hot pot of coffee when your hand is on it. I have to mentally tell myself this is this and that is that, it’s ok to worry a little but move on. I feel like if I don’t think about it enough, it won’t get fixed or it will make me right and the worst is going to happen. Like my thinking or planning it has any effect on things in this world, I know this, it’s a duh but it doesn’t mean crap to OCD. I know that it’s a habit to lock my door, but I still have to check it. I know that it’s a habit to unplug my curling iron, but I still have to check it. But it’s not because I don’t believe that it’s unplugged or locked, it’s that I can’t remember if I did it so I need to check it. It’s such a habit I cannot remember doing it. So I have to tell myself this, over and over because I still forget even if I’ve checked it a few times.

Most people think that OCD is something you have to do a certain number of times, and that is true for most people suffering with this. I don’t have a set number of times to do something, it could be 3 or 3000 for all I know. There is no number in my head, just the fact that I cannot remember if I did something or if I keep thinking about something I can prevent it from happening or make it happen. Think of a superstition, you walk under a ladder its bad luck. You throw salt over your shoulder for good luck. It’s my superstition of sorts, if I stop thinking it then it will/won’t happen the way I want it or need it to. In a way I think I could handle doing it a set number of times, because then maybe I wouldn’t spend my entire day doing it.

I wish I could make this worry productive. Use it as fuel to clean my house more. Use it as fuel to be more fun and go out and do things. Use it to have fun with my husband or with the kids. Use it for something good instead of this life sucking monster that it is. I can’t do anything like a normal person. I’m not living so much as existing because this thing rules what I do. I don’t want it to, and I work very hard every day so that everyone doesn’t see how badly things affect me. I work hard every day to overcome these thoughts on my own, because I do not want to be a burden on anyone. The sad thing is I am a burden to Bo and the kids unless I get this under control. I will be the thing that keeps them from true happiness. It won’t be just me who misses out on all the beautiful things that this life has to offer.

Sadly, I see things in Bailey that says he may have inherited it. He repeats phrases a lot. If we don’t respond or he doesn’t hear us he keeps saying it until we say something back. But sometimes he does it even though we have. And each time I tell him that we understand what he said and it’s ok, but he doesn’t have to keep repeating himself. Most of the time he’s fine, but every now and then he gets a little upset. He likes being precise on some things, some objects have to return to a specific place and if you don’t do it he gets upset. He was worse when he was younger, but he still does this from time to time. I know this can be normal, most small children are not good with change and they need structure to get through their day easier. But this is also an OCD symptom. Having it, makes me worry that just maybe I’ve given it to him. I know time will only tell, but I hope that my little boy doesn’t have this ugly monster inside his head. I don’t want either of my babies to have this. I don’t want anyone to.

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