I love to travel but there are so many moving parts and elements that I cannot control. I worry about forgetting something. This is magnified a thousand-fold when traveling, because if I forgot something I can’t just go back for it later or get it in a few hours. I start to catastrophize—like what will I do if I forget my medication? Or what if I forgot to turn off the oven and my place burns down while I’m gone?
I don’t think it’s an accident that I started showing signs of OCD in my early preteen years, right around the time I entered middle school and started wearing a back brace part of the day, in addition to the nights, to correct my crooked spine.
I was afraid of other illnesses and accidents happening to me or my family. I worried that if I didn’t knock on wood (a casual superstition to many people), that I could cause bad things to happen to my loved ones. Continue reading “My Need for Reassurance Was A Source of Shame But Is Now a Source of Connection: Here is How”