I’ve always been passionate about understanding others; stepping into their shoes and seeing, thinking, and appreciating the lives they live. I think it is important to take that extra step and see things from a different point of view. It is the only way to achieve a true understanding. I believe in this philosophy so much so, that it’s one of the main reasons I have this blog; to give others a glimpse of a life with mental illness. I’ve been in treatment for 2 months and 26 days and I think it’s time for another peek into my brain.
I have discharged from the Cedar Ridge residential program and am now in the partial program. In short, that means I am living in a hotel and drive to the main hospital Monday-Friday from 8:00-2:30. I am given exposures to work on while I am there, and then some to work on when I return back to the hotel. This is where the problem comes in. My OCD is more Anxiety than it is obsessive thoughts and compulsions. Mine is almost like a severe case of procrastination. I have these urges that are so big and so strong that tell me, “I can’t do this and I don’t want to.” It feels like a thunderstorm inside my head. My body feels heavy and my mind is racing, finding distractions that my mind can grasp onto, desperately trying to prevent me from doing a specific task.
These urges are so violent that I’m unable to get daily tasks done on my own. Just making my bed this morning was a challenge. My brain switches into distraction mode and is begging me to do something else besides make that bed. Feelings of dread weigh my body down and my legs tense as if trying to walk away without my permission. I’ve learned a few skills that I’ve been trying to use. My main one is taking small steps. My first small step was to stop crying and get my breathing even. I took a second and tried moving my hand up to my face to wipe away my tears, while at the same time making a loud even exhale of breath. I laced my hands in front of my stomach and looked down at my feet. I decided I was going to take a small step in the direction of my bed. A few seconds pass. Inhale. I take a small step forward. Exhale. I take another step. Inhale. I allow myself to feel all the panic and anxiety that’s exploding throughout my body, almost like a firework show inside my stomach and chest. I acknowledge that this is anxiety and it will go away on its own as I take my last step. After a few more breaths I pick up the blankets and start making my bed. Now I have to do this all over again for my next task.
I know I’m able to do these tasks, even if it is hard, but my problem is getting myself to get up and take the first step. This dread that overwhelms my body is just so hard to get past. I’ve never felt something so strong. I’ve just given into it for so long that my body has come accustomed to it and automatically avoids. I know I can get past it, but it’s going to be my hardest fight yet. I’ve fallen backwards and I’m trying to pick up all the pieces, I really am, it’s just going to take a little bit of time and a whole lot of strength.
~ Stay Chipper! ~
Remember you can always email me at Chipperchelseakay@gmail.com I’m always excited when I see emails!