A War in Her Head

Writing 101: Your Personality on a page

“We all have anxieties, worries, and fears. What are you scared of? Address one of your worst fears.”

Like a voice that doesn’t speak, it whispers silently, boring intentionally into her mind. Putting thoughts that aren’t hers into full view. Playing in front of her eyes like a scene from a movie. The picture is clear and detailed. As if it is actually happening. It plays over and over showing her what will happen should she falter, should she make the wrong decision. So she created a scapegoat, a fail safe to protect those she loves. She will sacrifice herself.  Every time she has to choose between a death or tragedy she will choose her own demise to protect them.  She sacrifices her self daily, symbolically laying down her life for her family.

This System put her mind at ease…for a while. But soon the weight of the sacrifice got too heavy to bear. She began to take responsibility for everything. Taking on too much because everyone “depended on her”. Soon, every decision she made no matter how small or big, she had to choose her own death. Every Decision. From deciding what to eat for lunch to which glass she takes from the cabinet, to which way she chose to turn down the street. Grocery shopping became a loathsome chore because of the many decisions she had to make. Sometimes, she had to go through every one of a single item just to find the one that would sacrifice her and not someone she loved. She knew that this didn’t make sense, that it was irrational, but she was compelled to do it and couldn’t stop until everyone was safe.

Even though she was doing this to keep those she loved safe, she hated that she had to do it at all. Daily tasks took twice as long as they should have. She started seeing danger everywhere. Fear ruled her life. Sometimes she was so consumed with fear that she would begin to panic. Her chest getting tight, the air thick, the weight of her next decision too heavy to bear. Tears would well and sobs would escape her lips. She was too weak to control them. The only thing that could pull her back together was the tight hold of someone. Her husband would have to pull her away from what she was doing and squeeze her in his arms. Soon, the  pressure from the hold and the warmth of his body would calm her down. Then, the aftermath of the “episode” would hit. She would lay on the bed, unable to move. Her limbs exhausted, heavy. Thoughts of hatred for herself and the way her brain worked would swirl around in her head. She would sleep out of pure exhaustion.

When she woke, she would feel better and it would be as though it never happened. Her husband would ask if she was ok. She would answer yes. And life would go on only to repeat itself again sometime later. It was her own personal little hell. The thing about this problem was that it is invisible. Most of the torment happened silently with in her own mind. She would try to do her best to make the decisions quietly before acting on them. Although sometimes she had to touch the things to feel which ones were the “bad” ones that would cause her families death. It was embarrassing, but if she resisted she would end up in another panic situation as the fear of being the one to “cause” her family’s death would over come her. Not too many people know about it because it is so hard to understand. It is completely irrational and someone who has never struggled with any form of OCD would never be able to fully grasp what goes on inside. So she suffers in silence with a smile and a mask.

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