I’m excited to actually have something upbeat to blog about this time. I hate writing dark posts because I don’t want pity. I write them because I want to be honest and give a full account of what it is to fight OCD. It’s not pretty. But I also want to give people hope. Every time I beat a compulsion, my first thought is sharing it with all of you to show you that it’s possible. Unfortunately, I usually fail at actually posting because of OCD, but I’m working on it.
So much has happened since I last updated. I’m still struggling with the dark cloud, but I’m not depressed; it’s not constant.
In May, I increased my dosage of Prozac to 60 mg/day. The previous dosage, 40 mg/day, had begun to take the edge off general anxiety but had not yet helped with OCD. This current dosage, though, has been amazing. I’m doing so many things that I never thought I’d do. It’s too much to cover in one post, so this will be the first of a series of updates on how Prozac, OCD, and I are getting along
First up: my fear of being barefoot
I have been unable to be barefoot for years. Yes, this includes at home and in bed. I have been terrified of leaving my feet unprotected from contamination. I have been for years, but this particular fear got a lot worse a couple of years ago when I got a fungal infection in my toenails that took forever to fight off. I didn’t understand it at the time. I am SO careful about my feet. I regularly took the girl I babysat to the pool. I didn’t swim (that’s a whole other fear), but I walked around the pool area in sandals. As soon as we would get home each day, I’d ditch the sandals for my socks, thinking they would offer more protection.
I was wrong, though. OCD completely misled me. Surprise, surprise, right? Wearing socks 24/7 actually helped the infection along. If I had just suffered through being barefoot a little, I would not have had to deal with all of that crap.
ANYWAY, the point of all of this is to say that I am getting better about being barefoot. A couple of months ago, I started a barefoot exposure on my own. Instead of putting on socks immediately after showering, I had to walk downstairs into the living room before I could put my socks on. I didn’t always make it all the way down before caving. However, the past couple of weeks, I have been sleeping without socks EVERY night. I don’t remember exactly when I started going without, but I have not worn socks one night since. It’s amazing.
It was really hard the first few nights. I kept a clean pair of socks in my pillow case just in case I couldn’t make it through the night, just in case I panicked. But I never used them. I don’t even get nervous about getting in bed now. I habituated SO quickly.
I was really skeptical about trying Prozac, as I’m sure many of you remember. I almost quit so many times during the process of building up to this dosage. I’m so glad I didn’t, though. It has made ERP therapy so much easier. Doing my homework doesn’t seem like such a tremendously impossible chore anymore. This sock thing wasn’t even homework; it was just something I decided to try on my own.
On the other side, I’m still majorly struggling with stupid little things like TV remotes and steering wheels and kitchen counters. I’m still paralyzed when it comes to cleaning my house, which is infuriating, but I’m hoping that will loosen up soon.