Intrusive Obsessive Stuff
This is a confusing post to write about, not really Tourette’s related, more directly to do with one of my comorbid conditions, OCD. I find it really difficult to put things like this in to words so I will apologise in advance if it doesn’t make sense or is too serious.
I had an incident today where a mistake was made and a particular care worker was sent around after I had been promised that she wouldn’t be again. I don’t have an issue with her personally, she seems like a nice enough lady but unfortunately she caused a flare up in my OCD through her actions a little while ago – I’m not going to go in to specifics on that series of incidents because that would feel rude. Today’s was quite frustrating though. As I have mentioned before in this blog (I think) my OCD is almost entirely centred around obsessions and obsessive intrusive thoughts – very few ritualistic or compulsive behaviours are present (again, I think).
Today’s particular incident was a direct continuation of the previous one, starting with the fact that when she first arrived she didn’t wash her hands until prompted, instantly everything that she touched became contaminated. I ended up being quite blunt and trying to get rid of her as quickly as possible, which felt really rude – but the entire time that she was present in my home the intrusive thoughts were getting more and more powerful. The worst part of it was that while trying to eat the food that she had heated (barely) for me all I could think of was phlegm (related to a previous incident). From that moment onwards the intrusive obsessions started, with each spoonful of the food I perceived the texture as more and more slimy until the point where I had to put the food down because I physically could not force myself to keep eating it as I felt so sick to my stomach. I then had to deal with around twenty minutes of these thoughts becoming stronger and stronger, obsessing over mental “playbacks” of the imagined sensory input from ingesting it – texture, taste, constantly moving images in my head watching myself doing it.
For reasons that may or may not be obvious to those of you who reside outside of that odd space inside my skull, this quite quickly spawned a horrible panic sensation. I had nothing to wash my mouth through with and felt unable to stop the constant playbacks. Started to seek things to absorb me, playing with bits of technology, making playlists, packing things in to my bag. This is a fairly tame one compared to some of the little burnouts I’ve had in the past – this all happened the best part of two hours ago though, and I’m still battling against the tide of images and imagined sensations in my head.
One of the more strange aspects of incidents like this is that afterwards it’s like I’ve gone into overload mode. I crave contact with others but feel unable to show affection or interact with people – which is confusing, to say the least. I don’t feel able to express my emotions verbally or physically, but inside I’m screaming to do so. I feel tense all over, like a compressed spring and still have that nasty panic feeling through my entire body. I become short tempered and withdrawn, but desperate to not be either. It’s usually during this time that I start to have mini-rages – suddenly boiling over with frustration for no reason and throwing or lashing out at something, followed by a horrible empty feeling straight afterwards not dissimilar to depression.
I’m going to go and nurse what is left of my sanity for a while.