Why "71º & Sunny?"

I consider 71º to be the perfect temperature. Not too cold and not too hot. I also love perfect sunny days. The vast majority of days are not 71º & Sunny and yet, all days were created by God's hand and they are still gifts, even if they don't fit my ridiculous definition of perfection. My struggle with OCD has at times imprisoned me in an impossible attempt to achieve perfection. I'm now learning to love all kinds of days that don't even come close to 71º & Sunny.

Please leave me a comment below. I really want to know what you are thinking!

Monday, August 6, 2012

Phone Paranoia

Screenshot of my phone
I really dislike using the word paranoia. It just seems so . . . I don't know, crazy? I dislike even more that it applies to me, but the truth is, it does. I don't want to give you the impression that I'm looking for enemies behind every tree and bush, because I'm not. Every now and then, however, some mild paranoia seems to be a part of my OCD. Is that normal for everyone who struggles with OCD? I don't know, but it does not seem particularly unusual, according to my own experience with others who have OCD.

The phone. A scary device for me. Don't get me wrong. I love to talk on the phone. I love all the little apps I can download on my phone. I love playing Words with Friends, and being able to check Facebook and my blog from my phone. The GPS app I downloaded is great, and that flashlight app? Let's just say that it helped me find my stray eyeglass lens hiding under my car in the dark of night.

My big fear, though, is that my phone is not properly hung up. Oh, how I obsess about my phone not being hung up! You see, over a decade ago, I had a flip-type cell phone. I was trying to call someone on that phone, but I couldn't get a clear signal. So I finally hit the off button and cancelled my call. Or so I thought. I found out later that the call did indeed go through, and the person on the other end heard me saying something that I did not want them to hear. I was mortified! It pretty much ruined my weekend, because I was obsessing (and mentally compulsing) about it the whole time. The sad part is that my husband and I were away that weekend and staying at a bed and breakfast. It should have been a relaxing time for the two of us. I think my husband still enjoyed it because I hid my torment, but my stomach was churning for the entirety of that weekend. More time stolen from me by OCD.

Since then I have been fairly paranoid about phones in general. After I complete a call, I almost always double check for a dial tone, and many times, I will then call my home number, in order to clear out the last number dialed. Of course, this is all compulsive behavior. Many times my husband will look at me with "that look." You know, the look that says, "I know you are performing a compulsion right now, I do not approve, and do not ask me to help you with it because I will not enable you." I get it. I know he's right. But I can't stop.

Just today, I was on the phone with my mom. A few minutes after I hung up with her, I got a call from another family member. Apparently, I had "butt dialed" this person after I hung up with my mom, and left a voice mail of me having a conversation with my husband. Thankfully, it is a family member that I am close to and the conversation between my husband and myself was just normal, daily stuff. Still - I am once again horrified, especially because I did not think this could happen with my new phone!

I know what I'm supposed to do for an ERP with this issue. Make phone calls, hang up once, and not double check anything. I can honestly say that I am not there yet, and tonight's incident only reinforces my issues with the phone. Bummer.

11 comments:

  1. Sunny, I can understand completely. I am laughing as I write this. Not laughing at you, but with you, because I thought of a time I did the exact same thing. I was in the car on the way home, and called home ahead of time. I got the answering machine--Larry wasn't home--and I thought I hung up. When I got home, there was a message on our answering machine--me singing loudly along with the radio. Quite the show! Thank goodness only my husband and I heard it! Needless to say, I'm a bit paranoid about hanging up, too!

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  2. On a serious side, I think obsessions can feel like paranoia sometimes.

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    1. Ha ha ha - that is a funny story, Tina! Was it at least a good song in your vocal range? ha ha

      That's actually a good point - is it paranoia or just obsessions? Or both? Interesting question. I wonder about that too.

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  3. Hi Sunny!
    My son, I think is the world's worst 'butt dialer!' My husband and I have received many calls from him only to hear back ground noise and chatter, lol.

    I like you don't like the word paranoia, or the word psychotic, or crazy .... the list could go on. Oh and I really don't like the words 'mental illness' either ....

    But thankfully I am coming around and getting used to the terms depression, and especially 'anxiety disorder.'

    Thanks for sharing real life here at your blog. I am blessed by what you share here. Blessings & Peace to you from Above :)

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    1. Thanks, Deanna. Yes, I have a family member (you know who you are!!) who is a notorious "butt dialer" as well. Whenever we get this person's calls my hubby and I laugh our heads off!

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  4. I hate it when I feel paranoid and then by the luck of the draw it really happens. I had my identity stolen about 4 years ago and ever since that, I protect my birth date and social security number to the point where I feel sick to my stomach when I have to give it out to somebody that really needs it. Like the IRS.
    I cringe at the word paranoid too-it really just sounds batty.

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    1. Sorry, Krystal Lynn! We had a credit card number stolen once too, and it really feels like such a violation. In a lot of ways, it's not even about the money. It's about feeling vulnerable.

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  5. I get paranoid about things too. Especially the phone and e-mails. I do some of the things you do with the phone.

    With e-mail, I have to keep on going into my sent items and making sure I sent it to the right person. I have to stare at their name. I am paranoid about sending e-mails to the wrong person even though I don't think I've actually ever done that before.

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    1. Ah yes, e-mail!! Strangely enough, I'm pretty much over any obsessions about e-mail, but I used to struggle quite a bit with that.

      I wondered if anyone else did that with the phone too. If I've learned one thing, it's that if my OCD gives me the idea to do it, odds are someone else's OCD has given them the same idea. I'm not too original with my obsessions, obviously!

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  6. Once, I had a cell phone that malfunctioned so that it wouldn't let me talk to people on it, but it would redial the last number I tried to call. That was easy to prove to the man at the store: he entered the store's number into it, and it proceeded to call him. He said it was like it was posessed. :) I got a new phone (it was still under warenty).

    Because my first name starts with Ab, I get a few unintentional calls, sometimes with long messages. However, I don't think I've ever been able to understand what was being said. At first, I called back, thinking they were talking to me. Now, after I'm satisfied it was probably an accident, I just delete the message.

    I'm sorry you had the worst sort of experience with a phone call you thought you ended. But somebody (Greyson, maybe?) wrote in a book that only if the house burned down three times from failing to perform OCD checks, then he would consider that checks might need to be done by his client; otherwise, it was just bad luck. (Which is easy for me to say while my house stands fire free and I haven't had an accidental embarrising call... Thinking about it with a harm obsession completely changes the picture for me... yikes! Actually, I still perform anti-fire compulsions... maybe I should think about that.)

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    1. Abigail - you make an excellent point! Yes, I think it was Grayson who said that (it sounds familiar to me). Oh, I know what I'm SUPPOSED to do with this. It sounds so easy, doesn't it? Just don't check. But I'm so scared. This is definitely one of my harder obsessions that I've had to deal with. Thanks for reminding me of that Grayson quote. Good stuff.

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