Purple Ruffle Dress: Forever21.
40's Hat, Purse, Brown Wedges: Thrifted.
Five months ago marks the lowest point in my life so far. For those of you who have been following my blog for quite sometime know that I have OCD, or Obsessive Compulsive Disorder. I am not OCD about the typically things that you would think I would be about. I am specifically OCD about throwing up, or as I put it (because I don't say those two words), "getting sick."
Although I've had OCD my whole life, it didn't rear it's ugly head until I was twelve years old. One night I was violently sick with the stomach flu and that was the night my life changed. I became obsessive about getting sick, more so than a normal person should be. I didn't want to go to school, I would wash my hands constantly, and I soon became very depressed and wanted to kill myself. This was all just at twelve years old, so you can imagine how worried my parents were. They quickly signed me up to go see a therapist the summer before I entered the seventh grade. I saw the therapist that summer and she helped me cope with what God had dealt me with. She gave me calming techniques for my panic attacks, and instructions on what I should do to rid myself of obsessive thoughts.
I can say that for the next few years that my OCD calmed down. Of course it was always still there. I still often feared that I would be sick or someone around me would be sick. I prayed to God that he would keep me safe and he always did. For about five years my OCD hid under the radar until last January.
I started to see changes in myself at the beginning of my junior school year. I began obsessing over being sick more and more. I would constantly ask my parents if 'I was going to be okay,' multiple, multiple times in a row unyielding. They could never say it enough for me. I also began abusing hand sanitizer and took any opportunity I could get to wash my hands. On top of these suddenly frequent behaviors, I began convincing myself that I was sick. In my mind I would dream up that my stomach hurt and that I was going to throw up any minute. I would make myself almost physically sick with worry and it would take long periods of time to calm me down. These panic attacks first happened maybe once a month. Then once a week. Then everyday. Then multiple times a day.
My parents began to become concerned again with what was happening to me, however, they were reluctant to put me on pills which was the only helpful option left. Things took a turn from bad to worse though at the start of the year. I began to starve myself because I was so,so afraid I would be sick on the food. Every bite I would put in my mouth I would imagine myself getting sick on, and after that I wouldn't dare touch my food. I began eating less and less, and not even my favorite foods appealed to me anymore.
On top of starving myself my panic attacks were so frequent that I couldn't go to school. Every hour I was newly convinced that I was to get sick and didn't want to leave my house in case I did. I begged and pleaded with my parents to let me stay home, but they forced me to school. I almost didn't make it one day when I had to pull over to the side of the road for fear of that I was going to be sick right there even though in reality I was perfectly fine.(That's the thing with OCD. You lose touch with reality and what's just your imagination). One week Matt had to beg me to get out of the car and walk into school everyday and I fought him tooth and nail and cried, cried, cried. My excuse? That any minute it would be time for me to throw up.
Because I was hardly eating anything at all, I felt faint and truly sick all the time which only added fuel to the fire. While walking in the school halls one day I was so dizzy I almost collapsed, and during my first period class I had to be walked down to the Guidance office because I was so fearful I was going to pass out then and there. I was pale as a ghost and could hardly function I was so weak. My guidance counselors became fearful for my safety and health, but there was nothing they or anyone else could do for me. My demons were all in my head.
My lowest point I can remember this past January was one specific night. During this period of time I could never fall asleep because I was too fearful that I might wake up sick. I remember being in a dream like trance while I screamed and cried at my mom that it was my time. That it was my moment to be sick. I stood over the sink and stared down the facet waiting any minute for the nothing in my stomach to come up. My mom pleaded at me to stop. She cried frantically, claiming it was like I was possessed by the devil. And in some ways I was possessed. OCD possessed me that night and took me to hell. I cried and hated myself and life because I was trapped in such a dark, despairing place that no one but myself could help me out of.
After this night my parents knew that enough was enough. That I needed professional help. They took me to the doctor and she subscribed me pills right away. I also began to see a therapist again once a week again. Within two months, I was back to my normal self and I thanked God for bringing me out of the darkness I had known so long and showing me the light again.
Tomorrow is my five month doctor checkup for my OCD pills. To see how far I've come since that dreadful night five months ago is incredible. Five months ago if you had asked me if there was hope at all, I would have told you that I had no hope. I would have told you that I would almost rather die than go through another day with OCD. But if you ask me if there's hope today, I would tell you yes. I would tell you yes a thousand times over. I lived through that horrible experience just to know that there is always hope. Although I still have my moments and my OCD has not been taken away, I am able to live freely now. I am no longer held and restrained by evil, but I'm lifted up so that I can see the light...The light that is always at the end of the tunnel.
With much love, Lauren.