bad vision

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I have a friend who struggles with an anxiety disorder, and she sent me this email the other day and told me I could post it on my blog:

I had a dream that I was in my back yard alone, and this huge wolf came around the corner. It was massive and growling and its hair was standing up. I started to panic and looked around to help me, but there was no one. The wolf started to run at me in slow motion, and it was getting bigger and bigger. As it lunged, I reached my hands out to try to grab its neck and strangle it. I closed my eyes as I began to wrestle with this snarling wolf, and I closed my hands around its neck as hard as I could. We were wrestling on the ground, me on top of it, and I opened my eyes. I panicked, realizing that the wolf had suddenly turned into this adorable house dog (practically a puppy) with a collar on. I jumped up, not understanding how I had suddenly been strangling a harmless puppy. Then I woke up. Sometimes this is how I feel, like I get terrified and paralyzed over things that are, in reality, not a big deal at all…

To which I responded:

I completely get what you’re saying.  For the majority of my life, I have been thinking that puppies were wolves.  It’s just SO HARD to see things correctly when something in our heads/bodies makes us see things wrong!!!

This is the brutal power of mental illness.

thought for today

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A writer — and, I believe, generally all persons — must think that whatever happens to him or her is a resource. All things have been given to us for a purpose, and an artist must feel this more intensely. All that happens to us, including our humiliations, our misfortunes, our embarrassments, all is given to us as raw material, as clay, so that we may shape our art. -Jorge Luis Borges, writer (1899-1986)

Thank You, Lord, for my OCD.  Thank You, Potter, for making this vessel exactly as is.

quote for ya

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“As we discussed in Chapter 1, the more you fight an obsession, the more frequent and intense it becomes.  This is called a paradoxical effect, something we all experience at times.  For instance, if someone commands you, ‘Do not think of a red elephant,’ you will automatically respond by thinking about a red elephant.”
Edna B. Foa, Ph.D., Stop Obsessing!