When I started writing more publicly late last year, I could not have foreseen just how often I would write about obsessive-compulsive disorder. But at some point in my slight breakdown after Rowan’s premature birth I completely ran out of fucks to give.
This week. Three repubs on Huffington Post. An original post on Scary Mommy. Scary Mommy also picked up one of the Huffington Post essays. I got a syndication offer. Thousands upon thousands of likes, comments, and shares.
Today has been weird. I woke up this morning to find that my OCD essay had been published by Huffington Post. I’ve spent the day in a fog of confusion about how I should feel about this. Excited! Like a fraud! Excited! What if everyone realizes I suck?! Excited! Hiding in a corner!
I was too busy with sick people to get my #TBT post up yesterday. I thought about backdating it, but decided just to make this week #FBF instead.
The line between quirky and weird seemed to be stuck between my fingers. That feeling when you eat a donut or an ice cream cone and the residue makes your fingers so sticky that you desperately want to find a sink? That’s how they felt. Licking them would help – for a few minutes. Little kids are sticky, and I spent a lot of time licking between my fingers for momentary relief. It drove my parents crazy – we’d be in a public place, and there I was licking my hands like a compulsive cat. And if that wasn’t enough to embarrass every adult responsible for me, sometimes I would get a similar feeling in the back of my throat – this annoying build up of faux pressure that had to be released, and the only way was to make squeaky sounds. Sometimes on inhale, sometimes on exhale, always until a magic point when everything felt better – until the next time. Seams of socks and waistbands constricted, so I turned my socks inside out, and wore my pants around my hips to free myself from their ever-present annoyance. Things just felt wrong and it was a puzzle to make them right again.
Saying I love weather is like saying I love breathing, it’s part of who I am, and has been for as long as I can remember. There is a home video from Christmas ’89 where I am playing in the snow, making snowballs, and generally being a kid – then I suddenly look up at the camera and with the authority of a meteorologist I state, “this is the first white Christmas in New Bern since 1898.” Then I go back to playing.