I’m lost between wanting to get better and wanting to count

Is having OCD really so bad?  I think OCD can be fun sometimes – if you consider counting fun.  1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8 – holding each set of 8 in my hand – counting the first four, counting the second four and then counting them together.  Lovely tracing my finger over the pattern.  8 knives, 8 big spoons, 8 small spoons, 8 big forks, 7 small forks – wait a minute – 7???? can there really only be 7?  There is one missing.  There is supposed to be 8.  Dumped the drawers – it must have been misplaced.  not there.  must be dirty, has to be dirty.  washed all the dishes.  not there.  maybe it’s in the living room.  checked all the surfaces.  not there.  must have fallen on the floor.  nope.  behind the furniture – flipped over all of the furniture and took about the backs of the chairs.  nope.  we don’t eat in the bedroom but it must be there, has to be there.  looked on the dressers, flipped over the mattresses, moved the dressers.  nope, nope and nope.  7 how can there be only seven.  I must have miscounted.  There is no way that I could have possibly lost one of my beautiful small forks. Not the beautiful fork that I had so lovingly picked out and brought into our home – a grown up set – not a cheap set purchased because we NEEDED a fork to eat with.  It was our hard earned yard sale earnings set.  We parted with our possessions and sat in the sun for hours for this missing fork.  I couldn’t have lost it.

1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7.  Still 7.  Recounted the others.  8 of the rest but 7 of the small forks.  Convinced that I didn’t look hard enough I repeated ALL of the above.  probably two more times.  maybe 3.

Now this was several weeks ago and there are still only 7 forks.  I’ve considered buying the set again and taking just 1 fork out and donating the rest but I’m trying not to allow myself to do this.  I believe I can live with only 7 but some days are hard.  I keep counting – magically hoping that one day the 7 will turn into an 8.  My husband believes that it must have been accidently thrown away.  It’s possible but I don’t want to think long on that because I don’t want to return to that place – the bad place, the repeatedly checking the garbage place where garbage had to be inspected multiple times to ensure that something valuable wasn’t thrown away.  no one should be in THAT place.

I’ve gotten better – I honestly couldn’t tell you how many plates or cups I own at the moment.  That’s a plus.  They are also not even and I don’t lose sleep over it so that is a plus as well.  I remember breaking a small plate once and having to purge a bowl and large plate just so the numbers were the same.  used to count those too – daily.

It’s hard though.  If the counting goes away, the fears go away, the anxiety goes away, the collecting and hoarding and handwashing and STUCKNESS goes away what is left?  I’ve been stuck in the OCD mindset for so long that I don’t know who I am without my obsessions and compulsions.

This journey towards happiness is a self-discovery journey – a find me in the process journey.  All that stuff doesn’t make me happy, it just boxes me in and makes me frantic.

This journey has led me to a new joy and most importantly hope.  Several days ago I purposely got a bit dirty and a bit wet when I planted 4 containers with seeds.  The dill and oregano have been growing.  The lemon basil is looking strong and the others may be peaking out anytime now.  Everyday when I look at these plants I’m reminded that I stepped out of my comfort zone and something beautiful has taken root.

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