A common disaster scenario which OCD can latch onto—
One in which symmetry can be perceived,
And when it comes to matters of hygiene OCD,
Once that symmetry has been perceived, it becomes all-important!
Some scenarios which inevitably suggest a possibility, prone to becoming a need, for symmetry—
—Doing something to one eye then the other, such as moisturising my eyelids (since they get dry and get stuck 😆); it is easy to imagine many more such possible scenarios when make-up is involved!
—Deodorising! I can’t move on because one side feels more wet than the other, no matter how many times I do it on this side…what if I get sweaty later on, but only on one side? 😭😭😭; This entire example sounds absolutely ridiculous 😅;
—Putting ear plugs in— are they both sufficiently secure; are they equally effective?
—Putting shoes on— are the laces equally tight/loose? Are the socks free of creases, and if so, equally so on both sides? Once those feet have gone into the boots, there’s no turning back! I sound like a child 😭;
—Are the earphones equally secure?? What if one falls out whilst riding my scooter? Ahhhhh!!!
—Have I lifted weights equally on both sides? Is one arm capable of one more repetition than the other? What if I wait a few seconds, then I can do a few more on both sides before stopping and restore symmetry; “What’s your secret to bodybuilding?” Erm…🤦♂️;
And, the worst part…they are the most mundane, meaningless, minus-nᵗʰ-world problems imaginable;
But that’s not the point nor the problem—
The problem is that nothing is possible until the mind has been settled and convinced (emotionally) to stop,
I can’t even do something to take my mind off the feeling of imbalance or unreadiness—
Because I’m still thinking about it;
I can practice juggling, I can watch comedy, I can read something,
But all it does is causes me more stress and exhausts me because I’m still thinking about the unresolved need for symmetry,
Whilst I’m missing what’s going on right now and any potential joys of living,
I’m semi-detached, dissociated and anxious,
By the way, the solution which usually works for me is to let the intense impatience take over, deliberately mess up the thing, hide the deodorant, and keep practising messing things up for fun 😆. It’s just that right now, I’m too aware of the fact that I’m doing this to try to forget about the obsession 😐. So I wrote this, so that at least hopefully some good comes of it. And what better time to try to explain the feeling of OCD than whilst in the vicious grip of it?