My mom always says,"There are none so blind as those who will not see." And I sometimes think that is where we are. This divisional line in the sand crudely drawn with broken bits of lumber and long crooked pieces of driftwood. I sometimes feel like I can explain it until I am blue in the face and yet there are not enough words to fully paint such a horrific picture. I could go on and on and on and yet you would not get it. Not totally. And sometimes I wonder if that is because you are unable to understand because you do not suffer from it, or if it is simply because you can not see it. Or maybe it isn't that you can not see it but rather that you will not see it. Because seeing it means having to acknowledge the depth of agony, fear, and frustration that rules my life. And honestly, who wants to see that in the one they love?
I sit there in a quiet room and I hear you not meaning to trivialize, but doing it all the same and I want to scream....I want to yell......that yes, OCD can cause all of this pain. Yes, OCD can screw everything up and no, it doesn't necessarily matter what else is going on at the time. It is not that the triggers cause the anxiety as much as the OCD causes the triggers to be there in the first place. Without the mental illness there would be no triggers, just everyday things in life that no one notices except people like me. So, it is in fact, just the OCD being the culprit and to pretend it is not such a big deal or that somehow I am blowing this all out of proportion is frustrating...not to mention, dangerous. Because OCD is a killer just as much as any other mental illness is and people need to remember that.
And I want you to understand my mental illness because if you did then you could understand me better. Because it is what makes me act the way I do, and it is what shapes my decisions right or wrong as they may be, and it is part of who I am. And since my youngest also has it, it would help you to understand him. It would help you to know what he will go through like I know what he will go through, because I have been in that hell for so long, I chose the wallpaper.
I really wish you could see. I wish I could explain it in a manner that didn't frighten you and that made more sense. I wish that you could see it as it is. It just is and like everything else, it is just something you have to learn to live with. I wish that it came with diagrams and maps and charts and picture books. I wish that it came with movies that depicted all of like it actually is and not the silly parts of it. I wish it came with warning labels and soft fuzzy blankets and posters to hang on the wall....I wish it came on coffee cups and in shadow boxes so that everyone could be familiar with it and understand it. So that everyone would know that it is a struggle and that struggle is real. That it is not an excuse for not doing something. It is not a fad or passing phase. It can get better but it never goes away completely. It is manageable but it is not "curable". And he and I will be just fine although we will have bad days. We will also have good days. And there is always hope that things will get and remain better. Nothing in this world is hopeless as long as you make sure to always keep a positive attitude.
I don't know how else to put it. Maybe I fail at describing it in a way that makes it understandable. Maybe I fail at showing you how it works but then again I can not always understand the things you have gone through. Even though, I try really hard to. So there is that. Maybe I too sometimes can not see the struggles you go through for the very same reasons you can not see mine. Maybe that is what life is.....trying to see others and their lives with complete honesty and compassion and having love for them just the same....