It’s been a few weeks since my first post about OCD, and the response has been pretty big (for this blog).
First off, I think a couple people may have read it the wrong way. I wasn’t trying to pull some woe-is-me crap, and I’m certainly not any worse off for it. If anything, I may consider taking meds for it just because it’s irritating.
Now, the real reason I posted that was to get feedback. I wanted to see what other people had to say about it, and see if anyone else had experience with it. JR linked me to a blog post at Penny Arcade from a couple days prior that described something similar. One reader e-mailed me and told me about experiences nearly identical to my own, and not just regarding OCD.
But, as several people pointed out, nothing I mentioned is unusual: everyone gets songs stuck in their head, everyone recounts earlier conversations. As my buddy Brian said, there’s nothing “clinically OCD” about it. The difficulty is identifying the line between normal and obsessive. Obviously, there’s no way that I can look in on someone else’s thoughts and see how they compare. I can’t possibly tell if this happens to other people to the same degree or not. A couple days ago, I woke up with the name Hüsker Dü running through my head. I didn’t know anything about them until I checked Wikipedia, and I have no idea where I heard of them, but their name kept repeating in my head all day. Maybe that kind of thing happens to other people, but I’m guessing not. Stuff like that isn’t harmful or anything, it’s just really irritating - kind of like having an annoying co-worker that won’t shut up, except you can’t even leave the room. Imagine someone sitting in front of you slowly repeating the name “Bob Saget” for about four hours; it’s kind of like that.
I’m sure I have dozens of other oddities that I could list here, but there are two more that I’ve noticed recently. For one, I can’t have one wet hand. If I’m cooking and splash something on one hand, I can’t just rinse it off and be done with it. I need to rinse the other hand too or I feel uneven. I also avoid stepping on lines on the ground - not for any superstitious reason, I just feel uneasy when I do. There’s a parking lot near our apartment that I walk through a lot. They hosted a basketball tournament or something there, so it’s got the lines for a basketball court painted on the ground along with parking spot lines. Not only do I have to avoid all of these, but I ALSO have to avoid stepping where the parking spot lines WOULD fall, if they were connected between adjacent rows. That part? That part’s just stupid.
Maybe I’m just weird. Either way, it was really therapeutic to write that first post. I haven’t been experiencing that stuff as much, but it may just be because I got it off my chest and kind forgot about it. I still haven’t talked to a doctor, and I probably never will unless it gets considerably worse - or my curiosity gets the best of me. I mean, Erin said the difference was incredible once she took meds for a little while, and she had the same “this is just the way it is” mentality I did not too long ago. I can’t help but wonder if things would really be that much different, but I also know that drugs don’t come cheap, so I probably won’t bother.