Friday, November 21, 2014

I Am The Dragon

There's a picture I haven't been able to get out of my head.

That's a symptom of OCD, by the way, obsessive thoughts.  From the time I was tiny I remember getting an idea in my head - usually a picture or feeling, real or imagined - that would plague me day and night.  Doctors call these 'intrusive thoughts'.  Mine are often upsetting or disturbing.

The current 'intrusive thought' vision is from The Voyage of the Dawn Treader, from The Chronicles of Narnia, which I've read somewhere in the neighbourhood of 15-20 times, and yes, that is another symptom of OCD.  In it Eustace, the sort of shitty cousin of the Pevensie children, transforms into a dragon for being especially shitty, and while he's a dragon he becomes less shitty but they can't figure out how to transform him back.  Then Aslan (Lion-Jesus) shows up.

"I started scratching myself and my scales began coming off all over the place. And then I scratched a little deeper and, instead of just scales coming off here and there, my whole skin started peeling off beautifully, like it does after an illness, or as if I was a banana. In a minute or two I just stepped out of it. I could see it lying there beside me, looking rather nasty. It was a most lovely feeling...And there was I smooth and soft as a peeled switch and smaller than I had been.  It smarted like anything but only for a moment.  I’d turned into a boy again...."

In the picture in my head, I am the Eustace Dragon.  I scratch and scratch and the skin that is foreign and I don't understand and is uncomfortable and even painful to me is shed and I am a human again.  

                    . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

My OCD has been baaaaad these past couple of weeks.  Winter is always hard, but for some reason it has hit me like a mack truck this year.  The cold, dry air makes my skin feel weird and wrong.  The texture of winter clothes freaks me out.  My neck has actually broken out into hives and I scratch and scratch and scratch but it never goes away.  

There are sometimes ways for me to cope with this, but I have also learned that sometimes there is really nothing.  I just have to settle into my discomfort, or rather, rage into my discomfort.  Dump water on my head.  Rub my face until it is swollen.  Take my shoes off, put them back on again, take them back off.  So in these times I dream of Narnia and a day that my skin will be peeled off.  I will see it there, wretched and ugly and heaped at my feet.  And I will stand fresh and clean and new.  I've turned into a girl again...

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