So it’s been more than a year, obviously. I never intended for life to get in the way, but I guess that’s how it goes. A lot has changed in the past year. I don’t know whether I’m at a point where I can say I’m doing better or worse. It’s been kind of all over the place.
For one, I haven’t been to therapy since October. This is another thing that I never intended to quit. It kind of just happened. I had to cancel an appointment for one reason or another and just never rescheduled. I keep telling myself I need to go back—and I do—but there never seems to be enough time or money to go.
Why is this really basic care so inaccessible to so many of us? It continues to frustrate me that mental health is not taken as seriously as physical health. Therapy is seen as a luxury, but for many of us, it is a necessity. But I’ll step off my soap box. The fact of the matter is that I haven’t been motivated to go for all kinds of reasons.
I have, however, been working on exposure response prevention (ERP) stuff on my own as much as possible. With some things, I’ve improved; with others, not so much. For instance, I probably use way more hand sanitizer than I used to, and I’m probably back to washing my hands more, too. I have not yet hit the point of really intensely dried out, cracking skin, though, so that’s something.
Public bathrooms are slowly becoming less of an obstacle. No matter how much I work at it, though, I think this is one thing that is going to take years to get past. I had a bit of a set-back recently, actually. I worked as a barista at a coffee shop for a month(ish) at the beginning of summer. It was a small, family-owned place, so no hired maintenance. We shared all of those duties, rotating jobs from week to week. My second week or so, I landed to coveted chore of cleaning and sanitizing the bathrooms. We’ll just say it was bad. Really bad.
I have been fighting OCD since I was a little kid; this struggle is nothing new to me. But that night, when I had to clean the bathrooms, I felt truly disabled for the first time in my life. It was pretty crushing.
But other things are going well. I don’t check things as much anymore. I can’t remember the last time I had to drive back home after driving a few blocks to see if I’d closed the garage door or not. That one is a huge relief. That crap made me late for work and class and everything on sooo many occasions.
So yeah, all over the place. Some good, some bad. All I know is that I need to get back to writing. It makes such a difference. And I need you guys. The community I experienced here and in other blogs was like nothing else I’ve experienced. So keep me accountable. Please.