I was having a nice quiet fairly ocd free day (ok i was sitting around reading and doing stuff on my computer which means that i wasn't doing anything that could give me OCD trouble.) However, i started feeling guilty and anyway the dishes needed to get done. No problem there, but there was lots of cardboard from empty boxes just laying on the counter. So i decide that since there were so many i should do the right thing and- ug- recycle them. I put them in a bag and took them outdoors. I threw the bag at the recycle bin but unfortunately i missed.
Now my problems start. I cant leave the mess in my front yard (can i?) til it's garbage day, so i bite the bullet and pick the bag up with 1 hand (so i can touch the door and faucet with the other one) and throw it in the recycle box. Well, now my hand is dirty anyway, so i might as well get the garbage can from the end of the driveway where it's been sitting since last garbage day. (Dh isn't home to put it away.) I''ve done this before so it's not too freaky. I pick it up out of the ditch, put the lid on and carry it back up the driveway. Just as i'm about done i feel something touch my leg. It's obviously the can. I calm myself down, saying it wasn't so bad, just take off the long shorts and socks and wash that leg. That kept me calm until i decided i should take my shirt off too 'in case' it was somehow contaminated in the process. So i pulled my shirt off with my 2 dirty hands. UG. Now i want to wash my hair too just in case. Anyway washing my legs doesn't go so well so i end up having a shower. While i'm IN the shower i start calming down and deciding that MAYBE, just maybe the can wasn't that dirty ON THE OUTSIDE anyway and i didn' t need to do any of this. Too late to change my mind mid-shower, but it is something for me to think about for the next time it happens.
I think i'm done with ocd, but the way it seems to work for me is that once ocd has a grasp on me, it goes for the jugular. I was tidying up the living room, picking up all of my daughter's drawings to thro out ( she's very artistic even at 5 so we have LOTS of her papers around. We even bot some insulation boarding to put up in th e famly room so she can post her creations. but we can't save everything).
I think about where i can put the pile where dd cant find it to retrieve all her stuff. I check the garbage can (cause NO WAY am i trying the recycle bin again today) and surprise, there's plenty of room. I stuff it all in and then ocd goes to work: "Even tho I'm working on NOT washing up after putting stuff in the garbage, THIS doesn't count, right? Maybe i got some garbage on my hand while placing it all in the can" (Usu. i just pitch stuff in). Instead I got a cloth to wipe the counter and wet it so now the my hands AND the cloth are dirty ( even tho i put dish soap on the cloth ). I wipe the counter, all the while listening to OCD saying: "now the counter is dirty. There's no way you're gonna prep food on that right?, This is just a preliminary cleaning, right? "
Here's to hoping that writing it all out and rereading it continually while editing will give me enuf distance to not clean the counter again, not because i forgot (yeaah, like i'd forget about it anyway) but because i trust that it was an ok thing to do.
On an imaginative thot record i get as far as: 'i have ocd cootie germs on my hand and on the counter AND i'm going to do nothing about it. No enlightening thots just : yuk, but i'll survive.'
I guess on the good side i actually got some stuff cleaned up. A couple of years ago i would have just left all the mess for Bruce to clean up when he got home. I would just have felt useless. Clean but useless.