I am not going crazy.
About a year or so ago, I was very new to the diagnosis of OCD and still learning what was OCD, what was me, how it worked, etc. Since I had learned that I had OCD, I was starting to realize that certain thoughts/fears/behaviors that I ignored on a daily basis (thinking they were signs of my instability and I needed to ignore them before people realized how crazy I was) were in fact OCD, and I could start to examine them again, because they weren’t reality. This of course made things kind of difficult, and for a while I felt very flooded by my OCD. Everywhere I turned there was another thought, another fear, another behavior–so much of which I had tried my entire life to not pay attention to. But now I could, and it was overwhelming.
Anyway, during that span of time, I watched the season premiere of “24”. In that season premiere, Jack finds out that his former colleague and best friend, Tony, had basically gone crazy due to the murder of his wife, and was now working for the terrorists. I was watching with my friend Sasha, and Sasha said something like, “Wow, that’s awful” and then kept watching.
I was frozen.
Ohmygod. This is what’s going to happen to me. What if I go crazy? What if something bad happens to someone I love–wait, don’t think that! You could make it happen just by thinking it–and I go crazy like Tony and start killing people? Am I a terrorist? What if deep down I’m a murderer and all of a sudden I’m going to snap? Ohmygod ohmygod ohmygod.
Watching the rest of the premiere was close to unbearable. I continued to spin about this, and at one point, started spinning along the lines of, what if it happens right now? What if you just can’t control your body because you snap, and you’re just going to go punch Sasha or something? Sit on your hands. Don’t move. Don’t risk this.
I sat there for the next hour or so, sitting on my hands, afraid that if I let them loose, I’d go crazy and do something rash. I was afraid to get up after and to go back to my own apartment. What if I did something bad on the way?
* * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * *
A year later, I watched the new season premiere of “24”. Something similar went on–Jack discovered that after Renee had worked with terrorists and tortured them and killed people, something shifted in her and she is no longer well. But I was not afraid. It didn’t even occur to me that this could happen to me–I simply watched, felt compassion and sadness for Renee, but that was all.
I’m not crazy. I’m not going to go crazy. I’m not going to snap and become a murderer. None of that is going to happen. It’s just not. That’s not me, that’s not reality. It’s all OCD.