From the beginning of what I would consider my existence with Obsessive Compulsive Disorder, one thing has always been able to induce a panic attack in me. And that thing is the thought of stepping on or touching someone's used band-aid.
I have laser sharp vision when it comes to spotting a band-aid lying on the ground and have actually pushed my husband out of the way of danger when he was about to step on one. This always ends up with my husband looking at me like I'm crazy, but whatever. Little does he realize what possible awful germs could have been lurking on that band-aid.
So I was excited recently when I feel like I had my first victory over my fear of band-aids. I went grocery shopping and when I got out of my car and walked around it to go into the store, low and behold, a band-aid was on the ground behind the trunk of my car. Eeeek!
So I told myself not to worry, don't let it get to me. I would just make sure I stepped around it when I loaded the groceries in my car. But I actually forgot about the band-aid. I loaded the car, returned the cart and saw the band-aid on the ground as I was heading back to my car. I could feel my heart rate increase and tried to tell myself to calm down, I probably didn't even step on it. Maybe. The cart was probably over the band-aid so I wouldn't have been able to...right? Right?! Whew... that was a close one.
The only compulsion that I let myself have was to drag my feet in the grass when I arrived home before I entered the house. I didn't use disinfecting wipes on the bottoms of my shoes. I didn't get undressed right away and wash my feet before putting clean pants on. In fact, I almost forgot all about it until I sat down at the computer and curled my legs up under me and for a second thought... eeeww, my feet probably have band-aid germs on them. But I didn't do anything about it.
And one day when I hear about someone contracting some weird disease that can be traced back to a random band-aid on the ground, I will be ready with a big Fat I TOLD YOU SO. But until then, I'll try to keep dealing with my OCD symptoms and not giving in to the thoughts that try to control me.