It’s been a busy week, though I’m not exactly sure what happened to make it so busy. Life.
Cleaning, getting a haircut, grocery shopping, taking the kids out on Saturday, Valentine’s Day preparations and Valentine’s Day itself, church meetings, teaching a class at church with less than a week’s notice… Things happen and fill up the days, I guess.
I’m continuing to have issues with my contamination OCD, mostly relating to using the bathroom and washing hands. I’m still counting my hand washes. Usually I get a little crazy in the morning and then have to severely “restrict” my urge to hand wash in the afternoon and evening to try and stay under 15 hand washes a day.
It’s a struggle every day. Sometimes I just wish that I wasn’t so aware of things—toilet paper flakes when I’m wiping, various stains, stuff on the floor that might be “suspicious.” I feel like if I didn’t notice those things, life would be a lot easier. I wouldn’t worry as much.
I helped out at my son’s Valentine’s Day party at school this week. There were moments where I felt so gross—watching kids cough or eat food and lick their fingers and touch things—I imagined all the germs and potential for sickness that existed on the games we were playing or getting out, on the books, the desks, on any and everything. There were times when I thought I couldn’t stay there, in that room, without making myself ill from worrying about it all. But I stayed. And I washed my hands thoroughly when I got home, but I stayed. And I had a good time.
It reminded me of the various weeks I spent as a science camp counselor, usually for boys’ cabins. Those were times I loved and cherished, memories that I’m so glad I have. I feel lucky that I didn’t have contamination OCD at the time to paralyze and stop me from serving in those ways.
OCD, the thief
OCD can take so many things away from us, including experiences, peace, time, and the ability to think and do both normal things and extraordinary things. It’s so important that we resist letting the OCD take away the simplicity and beauty of our lives from us, because it will. It will if we let it.
How was your week?