My erp this week, as if i haven't been traumatized enuf already, was to go to Value Village, a used clothes store. Now, once upon a time gone by i used to go there and buy clothes, take them home and wash them and then wear them. Not a big problem. I went to other used clothes stores too. Only condition was they had to look clean and neat. In fact when i was younger and our son a child, that's how he got his snow suits etc. So i've had a long history with used clothes and not had too much a problem. Haven't stepped inside one in 5 yrs. Not since ocd bit me in the brain.
I had done some pre-thinking. Coming up with reasons why it would be nice to go to value village. (not too difficult- i get to pick the style of clothes i like and the prices are cheap.) I looked at the store on line but VV has a particular smell to it that the internet pic's didn't bring across. Or else my extra-sensitive - pregnancy -nose is at it again. Imagined walking in the store. No big trauma in my mind, so i thot 'this will be ok, easy even.' HA!
Anyway i didn't get there til after everyone had come home from work and school. I should have gone alone but i thot it'd be nice to have a little support. It all went well until we parked in front of the store. I just stared at it. I said to Bruce (husband) that maybe we should start at the bank down a bit in the strip mall, work our way to V.V. Nope, it was raining so he was going directly there. i followed along behind. In the front door was a green couch. It looked ok but you never know. After all it's used by who-knows-who. ( i manage to keep this voice down to a dull roar at hotels, where the couches have also been used by people i don't know). So from where i am it looks like my daughter is swinging her hat against the couch. Strike 1.
We get into the store and i just stand there and smell it and look around and wander. Hubby and daughter are down by the toy section because i guess they don't get the words 'children's clothes' very well. So when i finally got them back to the kiddie clothes section KD ducks under all the clothes and makes sure she is completely enveloped in OCD. Me, i am about to shriek, freak or just run screaming, so i turn around to get away from my daughter before i grab her and just haul her out of the rack of clothes. I calm myself down and then decide it will be ok. KD comes up to me wraps her arms around me and gives me a HUGE ocd hug. So now i, too am contaminated. It's what i came for, right? Not exactly. I wanted a little integration. Touch some clothes with my HANDS, not my whole body, try some on and maybe buy one. Nope, she ensures i get the full-body contact. So we look for something for her to wear but she's not interested. (of course not, her task to throw me under the rack is now complete). So i go to look at pants.
The change stalls are all grungy looking inside and have black spots/ marks on the floor and in the corners. I make Bruce look in and ensure that the dirt in the corner is not really mold. So i have these 4 squares (2x2) tiles i feel are clean enuf to stand on to change. Isn't there some rule about having to have at least 1 meticulously clean change room for ocd disadvantaged people? There should be.
I try a few pairs of pants on and discover i have no idea what size i am anymore. I have gained a ton of weight in the past 3 yrs. Partly my fault, and partly ocd drug's fault. I am working on that. Not hard enuf, tho, apparently.
So after all that we leave with nothing. I sat in the car staring out the front window the whole way home. I was in shock. Not thrilled, or exhilerated like i sometimes am. Just in shock. I asked Bruce on the way home if it was ok to change into pj's when we get home. It's only 7:30, mind you. He says yes, it is. I throw all my clothes in the laundry becasue i don't want ocd reminders on me. That worked fine for me. But KD, altho she washed her hands and got into her pj's too, had a head of hair/ face still full of OCD. This was ok as long as she was watching tv and i was upstairs. When she came upstairs and wanted to snuggle with me it became a problem. I told her that i was scared to hug her because of her hair. She sat for a time and then disappeared into the bathroom. When she came out she said she'd washed her hair and her hands so i wouldn't be scared anymore. I let her hug me even tho ocd didn't really think that wiping her hair a few times with her hands really constituted cleaning it. I thot it was nice of her to care, since mostly she doesn't. (she's 5) I even lay in bed with her and read to her.
When that was done i changed my pj top and decided that was all i could do about/ for ocd today. Not sure if that was a success story or not. i certainly didn't like the idea of 'contaminating' my whole house to desensitize myself. Maybe that was just too much fo r one week. I still have the anxiety or stress horemones or whatever coursing thru my body. i hope they leave soon. At least by tomorrow.