Where Ladybugs Roar

Confessions and Passions of a Compulsive Writer

Sunday, October 24, 2010

The Unexpected

So, I'm officially off OCD meds now... I'm done tapering. It's been three years since I've had the full brunt of all my OCD symptoms. What surprises me the most is the complex loneliness.

With OCD comes a certain amount of detachment that I'd forgotten. Your brain justifies things... it has to... it's how you get from Point A (I'm a logical adult) to Point B (If I do this a certain number of times it'll make things better.) With OCD, a wall of detachment slides into place between your actions and your emotions. It's the only way you stay sane... or somewhat sane anyway. That detachment colors everything. At first, it's easy enough to say "I'm not that different from everyone else... it's just chemicals and I can hide it." Unfortunately, most people with OCD are above average in intelligence and they know that most people's minds to latch onto things like ours do. It's dark and it's creepy and we just can't let things go. In the past, that's made me feel like one of two things: either I'm dark and evil or I'm different. I've gone back and forth.

That's not entirely where the loneliness creeps in from... though it is hard to be constantly harassed by your own mind and know that few people around you will understand.

The other part is my kids. When I'm on my meds, it's easier to accept that having only autistic children isn't going to make for the happy motherhood experience I dreamed of when I was a girl. It's all I ever wanted.... I only ever wanted to be a mother. Having two children with complicated needs who will need me but never act like they love me... wasn't the anticipated dream. When I'm on meds, it seems less poignant.

Now that I'm off... I feel separate. My brain keeps trying to convince me to do things in order to ease the pressure of my OCD and I'm not letting it have control. The detachment is in place... in a family where detachment comes easier than emotions. Other than the husband, my life is all about being separate and detached.

He probably hasn't realized why I'm so emotionally needy right now... despite still having this nasty cough and the weird byproducts of my OCD.

It's... different.

B and I went to the Harry Potter Exhibition on Thursday. I'll try to post a few more comments tomorrow. It was awesome... but you can tell I'm in a bit of a mood right now.

Friday, October 15, 2010

The Last Battlefield

Somehow I'd managed to forget the nightmares that come with OCD reasserting its hold on your mind. Wow. Hitchcock and King have nothing on the depth of nightmares that a tortured mind can create. Part history and part demon. Then the familiarity of faces in the depths of hell. It's a special brand of horror individualized and meant to grip you long after you wake up. Plus, it seems twice as vile because with OCD comes insomnia so you feel like you begged to have your heart ripped out. It took me an hour at 4 a.m. to get to sleep.

I've had nightmares my whole life so you'd think you'd get used to it... but you don't.

My cold feels a bit lighter today. We'll see if the hours keep it that way.


Thursday, October 14, 2010

Splashing the Lamb's Blood About

I've never had this vile of a cold... that lasts forever. I've now had this stupid thing for over two weeks and my cough sounds as fresh as if it's that second miserable day of a sickness. I keep coughing so hard that I throw up and that stupid cracked rib that had finally healed feels as if it's re-cracked or is bruised.

Finally, on Tuesday, I gave into my husband's demands that I go to a doctor. I sound like I'm on my death bed in the throes of the plague, but apparently it's just an average, everyday, boring cold that is knocking tons of the city down.

So, here am I... still sick... still coughing... still wondering how this can possibly be just a cold. On the other hand, the visit to the doctor and this illness firmed up my opinion on something. I've been struggling to keep my dosages on my OCD meds appropriate for how much I'm eating... which has basically been nothing. I've never had a cold kill my appetite like this. I've dropped 15 lbs in two weeks due to a cold. It's completely frustrating. I've had to skip doses rather than "over-dose" on the meds. I'm tired of this exactness when it comes to medication. I'm sick of medication. I lasted longer this time than I have in the past. I think I'm at three years of meds. I'm not doing this anymore.

It's not just this though. The tediousness of getting dosages right at the right time is a piss-poor reason to quit taking medication.

It's the memory loss. This stupid "blow to the head" levels of memory loss isn't worth it. As I was at the doctor's, he was asking me questions that I couldn't answer. I wish I could describe to you how it feels to have each day swallowed up behind you in this hazy blackness so that you can't remember anything that isn't in your long term memory storage. I'm tired of sending myself emails to remind me of things or repeating things... or connecting things to numbers or stupid phrases. You shouldn't have to use little mnemonic devices to remember things as stupid as a single thought.

So... I'm just done for a bit. Chances are that it's a reprieve, but I need one. I'll be crabby and moody while I'm coming off and then it'll be a struggle to adjust to the full-on OCD experience again.

Having OCD is very much like having your worst enemy live in your head... I've been giving some thought to writing a novel about it... but it just seems like it might be too dark. I don't know. Maybe in a few weeks I'll give it some more thought.

Thanks for understanding. If you ever have any questions, as you can see, I'm completely honest about my OCD. I hid it for twenty-eight years until B was diagnosed, and then I decided to throw it out into the light of day and quit behaving as if it was a dirty secret. It's genetics and hormones and chemicals and that's all it is. Well... perhaps it's also fate or divine intervention... but it's still not dark and dirty. I don't regret my past suppression of it, but I won't let my daughter grow up believing that she is evil or dark.

Chemicals and genetics.

Yeah. Good times.

Friday, October 8, 2010

Reject you must I

The self rejection does make it easier, but it truly doesn't completely take away the sting... especially since I had hoped... never mind... it doesn't matter.

As you've seen in the past, I decided to take the edge off snailmail rejections by including my own rejection letter to myself. The Yoda one just came back. (It was for Curse Me A Story which I've just finished thoroughly revising.)

Here is the self-rejection I included with a full request's SASE:

Young Novel Writer,

The words are strong with you but another rejection must I write. Many rejections will you see before the force of your novel will be discovered. Discouragement you must face. Write you must. Realize the power of the dark side must not overcome your spirit, young novel writer. Fear is the path to the dark side… fear and overuse of adverbs. Great things I sense in you. Triumph you will. If not, there is another novel writer, but busy they are. Rely on you, we must.

Try again you must. No! There is no try. Do or do not. There is no try.

Apologize I must that this manuscript is not accepted. Reflects on you it does not. Writing does not matter. Judge me by my writing, do you? Hmm? And well you should not. Like to write sentences in strange order do I.

Sad I am that I must reject you. Always remember the novel will be with you and some day with another agent.

May the words be with you,

Yoda on behalf of: