Mental Health Monday – Scrupulosity

I had read on a few blogs online from other OCD sufferers that OCD can effect one’s faith. I did not , however, know that there was a term for it or that it was it’s own condition.

Scrupulosity : “A form of Obsessive Compulsive Disorder (OCD) involving religious or moral obsessions. Scrupulous individuals are overly concerned that something they thought or did might be a sin or other violation of religious or moral doctrine.” –IOCDF

When I went to my first therapy appointment recently, she asked me when I started to notice my depression coming back. I thought for awhile and said it was a year ago, when I started to doubt my faith. She asked me to explain my doubts and fears about it. As the session went on, I explained my OCD thoughts and compulsions, not realizing that the religious stuff was at all linked to my OCD.

After a while she finally stopped writing notes, looked up, and said that I definitely have OCD with emphasis on scrupulosity. After she explained that OCD is sometimes called the doubting disorder and that it lies and attacks everything we love and everything we are, it all started to make sense.

My whole life has been about God. I grew up in church, I became a christian at age 5, I was active in youth group and strong in my faith as a teenager. My whole relationship with my husband was based on our faith together and before started dating  we spent a month in prayer and seeking God’s will for our lives. If He didn’t exist, if my whole life was based on one big lie, then what does that leave me with? Does that mean my choices were all wrong? What purpose does life have? I was completely lost and alone and I felt like I could tell no one. No wonder depression had taken over my life.

Practicing my faith became very hard over the past year. I doubted everything I thought and everything I heard about God. I started tuning out the pastor’s sermons because with everything he said there was this little voice that would contradict and pick and cause doubt.

If I tried to pray, I was convinced God wouldn’t hear me because I doubted. I didn’t read the bible because I could no longer accept anything it said.

I was in the praise band and every time I played I would be berating myself inside.

“How can you be leading worship when you’re not even sure you believe what you are singing? All these people look at you and hold you to this standard that you are failing to meet. They think you are this great christian woman. You are a fraud.”

After a while I couldn’t do it anymore so I pulled myself out of praise band. I was letting everyone down and they had no idea why.

But now that I know there’s a reason for this doubt, that this is not me but my OCD, I can start to fight back.

I will be starting ERP soon. It is going to be a slow process. My therapist said it might be a while before we can address my faith based obsessions because they are huge and we need to start very small. But it gives me hope that I will one day be able to have a relationship with God again.

For now, I am going to take a small step on my own. After being out of the band for a while and not being able to play christian music, I am going to try to play a song for the Christmas season. I can’t promise I’ll succeed, but I am going to try and push through even when OCD is screaming in my head. I am not going to let OCD ruin who I am.

I know God is real. I know he sees my heart through all the doubt in my mind.

OCD lies. That is the truth that will keep me pushing forward.

Rise

Photo by Philip Harris

Photo by Philip Harris

 

Tomorrow peaks through, kaleidoscope colors dance upon dead limbs
It’s pleas seep into your skin, prodding you to fight
Unrelenting, it provides hope and solace for a weary soul

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Written for Three Line Thursday

Emptiness

Photo by Michael

Photo by Michael

My heart feels empty
Empty like a cup run dry
Dry like my cracked lips
Lips that want to speak, but only cry

 

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Written for #FieryVerse

Prompt: Emptiness

Shaken Foundation

Over at Mindlovemisery’s Menagerie they challenged us to do a Loop Poem or a Shadorma.

Loop Poem Guidelines

1)  No restrictions on the number of stanzas or the syllable count for each line;

2)  For each stanza, the last word of the first line becomes the first word of line two,
the last word of line 2 becomes the first word of line 3,
and the last word of line 3 becomes the first word of line 4;

3)  The rhyme scheme is abcb.

 

Shadorma: a non-rhyming six-line poem with a syllable count of 3 / 5/ 3 / 3 / 7 / 5.

 

For this challenge I decide to do a combined poem. First and third standzas are Loop and second and fourth are Shadorama.

 

wojciech-siudmak-door-wikiart

 

Heaven seems unattainable

Unattainable to only me

Me who can’t seem to separate real from fake

Fake like the voices that won’t let me be

 

I can’t seem

To hold on to You

I have lost

My will to

Fight against these pressing doubts

So where do I stand?

 

Where do I place my feet?

Feet that can no longer hold me up

Up, where I should be facing

Facing You, holding my empty cup

 

I’m tired

I have lost my strength

Who am I?

Who are you?

What do I have left with out

The faith I once had?

Refresh My Darkened Soul

Yesterday was National Poetry Day in the UK. I had planned on posting this but life got in the way. Anyway, even though I live in the US, I still wanted to celebrate this wonderful day and I did write a poem which I submitted to Three Line Thursday. Hope you like it!

Photo by: Matt Adamik

Photo by: Matt Adamik

 

Your call is like a cool drink of water. Replenish.
My veins sing your song,
As my soul tries to shine again

 

 

 

Check it Out!

Light-Lines-Cover

Three Line Thursday released their first anthology comprised of the winning poems from year one!

“Light Lines: A Three Line Thursday Anthology. The idea for Three Line Thursday was born from Grace Black’s love of brevity and all things artistic. In a disposable, throwaway world our ever decreasing attention spans still seek moments of inspiration; Grace refuses to believe poetry is dead. Poetry is, however, evolving and has always been an effective way of conveying emotive resonance. Think saying more with less is easy—think again! This anthology showcases some of the best works in brevity during Three Line Thursday’s first year along with some of the talented artists and photographers that contribute to TLT each week. Dive in and see what Three Lines is all about—” -Amazon Description

I, sadly, did not win in year one but I love contributing my three lines each week and I can’t wait to get my hand on this book! I will keep at it in year two and who knows, maybe I’ll be in the next one!

Get your copy HERE (US)

Get your copy HERE (UK)

Peace Comes in the Morning

Though winds may ravage and waves crash in.
I stand firm on solid ground, Your armor my protection.
And when the morning comes, Peace shines upon my face.

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Submitted for #3LineThursday Week Forty-Three.

 

 

 

 

 

Carry Me Away

Blowin' in the wind. CC2.0. Photo by: Simon Harrod

Blowin’ in the wind. CC2.0. Photo by: Simon Harrod

Like the wind

rushing at the leaves

turn my world upside down

expose what’s underneath

and when I fall

carry me away

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Submitted for #SpokenWord Wednesday at #FieryVerse.

Prompt: Turning

Unanswered – #FieryVerse

 

Silence CC2.0 Photo by  persona.natali.

Silence CC2.0 Photo by
persona.natali.

 

If only

you would sit still

quiet

and wait

basking in the silence

only then will you hear

my answer

 

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Submitted for #FieryVerse.

Prompt: Unanswered

Home At Last

Pilgrim’s Progress. “Thus, they got over.” Public domain illustration by Frederick Barnard 1889.

Pilgrim’s Progress. “Thus, they got over.” Public domain illustration by Frederick Barnard 1889.

 

 

I have waited for you.

I have watched you.

I’ve seen your battle with Darkness itself.

I’ve seen you through the waves he crashed upon you.

I’ve held you in those moments you thought I was gone.

I’ve heard your praises.

I’ve heard your doubts.

I’ve seen you laugh…

I’ve seen you cry.

I’ve seen you bear witness, whether it be through words or actions.

Your smile could light up a room and brighten anyone’s day, no matter who they were.

You have traveled the narrow path, difficult as it was.

I welcome you home, my good and faithful servant.

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Submitted for Warmup Wednesday!

This week’s Warmup Wednesday challenge: include the end of a long journey.

 

Our Hope

My #3linethursday entry.

Darkness tries to settle
In the hearts of the cold
But hope burns bright in the heavens

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