I was back at work today after my OCD-inspired vacation and I had an exposure breakthrough. I experience the habituation piece of ERP pretty regularly. That's when during an individual exposure, the anxiety slowly eases over the course of minutes or hours. It's much more rare that I've totally overcome my fear of something. Usually even if it's easier to face it, I still feel a little stress and just force myself to do it anyway. But today, a coworker brought some paperwork over to my desk. I usually feel a sense of dread, because I know I'll want to wash my hands after touching it. But today, she handed it to me, and all I thought was, great, I could really use that. I thumbtacked it to my bulletin board and went back to my computer. It felt awesome!!! (Now, if she'd had symptoms of a cold, that would have been another story, but we'll save that exposure for another day. :) )
I'm Ann, a 43 year old woman who has struggled with OCD for the last 17 years. I've been in treatment with some success, but never really put a knock out punch on my compulsions. I started working toward that goal in 2009. Obviously this is a work in progress. This blog chronicles my journey, as well as discussing OCD more generally.