Things haven’t been going the greatest recently but there was a high point yesterday in terms of tackling OCD.
One of my biggest issues is surrounding little kids, particularly babies and kids not potty-trained, with my OCD coming into play about the germs and gross stuff dealing with diapers and poop and whatnot. All the stuff that most people don’t have a fear over, but do find gross.
Now needless to say, I started to really work on this issue almost 2 years ago at the IOCDF pre-conference 2-day intensive group treatment with my now close friend who I met in that group. We both encouraged each other, and when it came to babies, I took it slow and didn’t simply avoid them as their parents pushed them in their strollers down streets like I would have in the past. My friend gave me the courage to walk past them and get contaminated with whatever OCD felt would hurt me.
Fast forward to yesterday. I went to a brunch fundraiser for the nursery school (think LOTS of 1-4 year olds) and had some initial OCD thoughts before leaving the house with my mom. But then once I got there, I was so focused on how hungry I was since I hadn’t eaten breakfast that I didn’t really notice all the bazillion kids there (in parents’ arms, running around, eating at tables, etc.) so my OCD and anxiety didn’t skyrocket, Since it didn’t have that initial skyrocket, I never really became super aware of how many little kids were ACTUALLY surrounding me, and I was there for a good couple hours!
There was even one time where a small baby’s hand accidentally touched my arm, since he was in his mom’s arms and thus at my arm’s level, and I DIDN’T FREAK OUT! I did have that initial mini-freakout of “OMG it touched me, should I go wash my arm or leave here?” but I just didn’t let myself focus on it and after about 30 seconds, it went away!
I know I still have a bit of a ways to go til I’m completely comfortable around little, un-potty-trained kids, but man, yesterday was an amazing sign of just how far I’ve come.
It may be small, but it feels so awesome to me to have done all that!