Thursday, January 12, 2012

Soon I'll Have the Cleanest Laundry Around...and I'll Have to Do Someone Else's Laundry.

I'm avoiding is my next laundry erp.  Because it hasn’t been working out well for me, I’m now scared to do it and want to avoid it.  I also need to reread my thought sheet. If I REALLY did believe that my laundry was not toxic, than touching a piece of it with my toe shouldn’t have sent me into a tailspin.  So I guess my ‘imperfectness’ is actually showing me which part of my recovery I need to work on better.  But I do believe I still should wash my hands after putting laundry in the machine.  If that is true, then why can I touch the laundry w/o having to wash???  Why wash at all after?  Because I have touched the detergent bottles?  After I get new ones will they then be ok to touch too?  So many questions.  So much procrastination.  
Reread my thought record.  I think it’s ok if I let the used clothes touch my shirt as I’m carrying them downstairs.  I’m visualizing me doing it and am not getting too many dread thots.  Not gonna hug my ‘used’ washcloths, tho! 

Well, that erp didn’t work out too well.    So then I’m in the shower crying. I have to be careful in the tub so I don’t contaminate the curtain or the walls, my soap is disappearing fast and I botched up my ERP for the day.  After a long time and lots of wall/shower curtain spot wiping,I finally get out of the bathroom and get dressed.  My face is all blotchy red, my eyes are sore and blurry and my mind is exhausted.  Now I’m supposed to go on with my day like everything is fine.  But it’s not.  And then I look outside and realize that all my snow shovelling of 2 days ago has disappeared under the newest dumping.  I am sick of the snow and it hasn’t even been here a month yet!  
After a while I felt better. Then this other thought pops into my head, from my wiser Self.  It goes: 'isn’t it better that you make all your mistakes now, while you still have an opportunity to discuss them with your counsellor Monday if you can’t solve them on your own?'  I hate it when she’s right.

 Especially 'cause I want to be ‘right’.  And finished my ERPs.  Cause as far as I have planned this is the last one.  Couldn’t the last one be easy?  But that is not the way it works.  When I did the easiest one, it was also very hard.  But not traumatic.  I wish that my erp’s were all like the  mailbox one years ago! One try, success and freedom.  I still don’t feel like grading this erp.  I just think I flunked again.  And I don’t want to hear how since I actually got the laundry done, it was ok.  It was no worse than doing laundry and showering afterwards.  I just want to go to sleep and try again tomorrow. At lunch. After I’ve slept half the day away.   And if it doesn’t work I want to just be able to go back to bed.  

So, Abigail, i guess i too, am not really that accepting of a less than perfect grade. :)  But i want to be. Because that is the only way i'll survive this. So here goes:

10/10 for bringing the laundry down to the machine, not worrying if it touched my clothes.
5/5      for putting the detergent in without any mishaps.
2/5       for wiping down dryer and washer because while i was concentrating on the wiping my other
            hand might have touched my clothes.  Don't know for sure, didn't know what to do.  Guess i  
            botched it up again.  i undressed and did some other cleaning chores and then     
0/10     had my second shower in maybe an hour.

17/30  total.  A pass. Barely.  In my not-so-tolerant mind it registered failure.  Again. Humpf.  Another try tomorrow.  I can't fail at this EVERY time, can i????


  1. Karin,
    I'm sorry you had such a frustrating experience. Please cut yourself some slack and get some rest. Hang in there!
    I still like your grading system. I think it's good to see what is going OK and what still needs work. Cuts out some of the "all or nothing" thinking that is easy for us to fall into.

  2. Thanks, Tina. I do feel better now.
    When i told my husband what happened today i mentioned that i am now able to hold 'used' laundry against my clothes and not think i need to change. I forgot about that earlier. :) i just hope i've finally reached the rock bottom of the laundry and can work my way back up soon, or i'll be taking clothes off people just so i can wash them for the practice!!

  3. Karin, you did NOT fail. You didn't, even if it feels like you did. ERPs are brutally difficult and every time you even attempt an ERP you are making progress. I wish I could possibly relay to you how much I admire you for your courage. I would give you a big giant hug right now if I could. Question for you: Do you have someone that you trust that could do some of these ERPs with you? I find I usually have to have someone holding my hand with the difficult ones or I don't make any progress.

    1. Thank you, Sunny, for your kind words and hug.
      Yes, my husband was standing and watching me the last 2 times, which is why maybe i didn't fall apart completely. Today i was on my own, because he was at work and i wanted to get it done early in the day so i wasn't getting anxious about it. Usually after the first few times i can do it on my own but it's nice when he is there to bounce ideas off when i get all full of anxiety and can't think straight.