It would be incredibly easy to maintain the status quo in my recovery from OCD. I have many time periods of little to no obsessions. I was just telling someone that I had several obsession free hours last evening. The level of my daily torment and pain has gone done significantly. In fact, I have many truly wonderful days now. The bad days are the exception. I am still struggling some with depression, but my anxiety feels well under control. Even when I do have anxiety attacks, they are usually short lived and I have the tools to work through them. These attacks no longer ruin my day and I am able to move on with whatever my previous plans were once the attack has subsided. Basically, I have lots of reasons to be satisfied with where I am in my progress.
That would be a big mistake. I have lived with anxiety long enough to know that if I am not fighting against it, I am allowing it an inroads to more control of my life. I don't believe an anxiety disorder stays stagnant. It's either getting worse or getting better. I cannot allow it to regain control ever again. I really don't think I could go through that. It's so hard though, to keep fighting. It's tiring and draining. Sometimes, I never want to hear those three letters ever again. But, like anyone with a chronic illness, I don't have a choice. Those three letters are just a fact of my life.
Moving forward is really frightening. I don't want to force myself to feel anxiety anymore. My next ERP is something I've been putting off for a few months. It has to do with that awful finished basement (of course). In particular, at my support group leader's suggestion, I am going to attempt to take a book off of the "mousy" bookshelf (where some mouse droppings landed), put it in a bag, and carry it around with me all day so that I can randomly touch it over and over.
So far, I just can't bring myself to do it. I have another support group meeting on Monday night, and I don't want to show up again without having accomplished my goal. But I'm so afraid. I know that once I touch the book and touch other things, I can't undo it. I just read an article about a couple of people catching hantavirus. I don't want to be responsible for passing that around to others. Can I touch the book, then go to the grocery store without washing my hands? Can I shake someone else's hand? My husband washed the bookshelf with Lysol wipes and he also washed down the covers of all the books. However, he couldn't wash every single page in each book. What if there are remnants of rodent droppings that we can't see? I'm scared.