Beyond delusion, plus self worth and authentic discourse.

So its time a wrote a little because my health fluctuates alot, so writing has gotta help me consolidate the healthy parts of the brain.
Or at least get them moving.

So i have this psychotic delusion or depression. It’s both. It causes the depression.
(believe me or not… lol it was there)

Even though i was aware of it, and it was the real reason i went inpatient – not harm OCD. I needen’t go into it’s content, but its a fairly benign topic, but that’s not how it felt and everytime i thought i’d nailed the topic adn labelled it benign…. it would come back later. I still think, and my final psychiatrist thought, that it was not my OCD despite of course i would attempt to find ‘answers’ to it too. Psychotic feelings my friends. Delusion covered up by reasoning and a legitimate enquiry. Underestimated how it made me placid with regards reality, and memory and attentinon was often sabotaged. Sabotaged all the time, Not like a concentration isssue, more of a reality issue. I’m sure you know what i mean in some ways. In different ways to when my ocd was bad. I haven’t been able to work or do anything i would’ve wanted to do in many parallel dimensions, because of mental illness. All throughout my life. Honourable attempts have been cool to look at though.

Facts, no munchausen.

And you know what, i am really only truly going beyond both my ocd and this, now, as i work out why i could never work or pay attention to the important things throughout my life, or understand some things or be confused and disorientated by other things. Or be emotionally affected by things, even painful things, in a healthy way. Bring the pain I want pain. Not the mental illness pain. Realities’ pain.
The pain from grieving, the pain from poverty, the pain from being alone. Thats not to say the pain from my grief doesn’t exacerbate my mental illness. In some ways it does, like with others, however with regards my delusion, I’d rather sink into realities’ pain and grieve properly. Grieving is hard. But what i meant at my mother’s funeral, when i spoke with a friend, was that I already knew what it was like to experience a lot of suffering. I wasn’t disrespecting my mother, i just felt like explaining that. Perhaps i felt that i needed to talk about both my mother and my mental illness. Address both. Yea so its take me a few years to grieve and now i have.

Once or twice years ago before any real insight into why i was diagnosed, i would mention I get detached. I very polite way of saying i was suffering. Some would say ‘hey that’s a good thing, man!’ haha, nope, no it was not. I never knew how to explain how disturbed i felt.

I would feel emotion however, but they would often be misfiring, misguided exacerbated anxiety, or delusional. So I’d rather be a psychopath. Just kidding.

I’ts highly likely I am autistic spectrum disorder, but upon careful examination it hasn’t lead to inconsistent recovery, not like the OCD or this.

ill leave it there with that, i’ve got a healthy part of my brain going 😉

Self worth. What i have learned from having mental illness, is that although i would fight often like a warrior to try and have fun, it was often forced and i couldn’t quite sink in to reality enough to understand that it all comes from realisation of our own self worth.

it was just so hard to get at, breaking down all the cages and bricks mental illness produce.

symptoms are symptoms. they differ and often overlap in diagnostic DSM (4 or 5 whichever they are up to now) practice but they are very important. Psychiatric disorders differ and suffering is unique, but what i am getting at, is that its very often unique even if we had the same diagnosis.

I’m studying neuroscience now which is why im moving further along with de-legitamizing my delusion and understanding things beyond how i have in the past. (well its a good course so i kinda have to! Can’t reason my way through like i scraped on thru with in my undergrad, without understanding and engagement)
If I decide I can do it I shall return to let you know. God speed.

Authentic discourse will help with this. I am not saying i haven’t always been authentic. to the contrary. However, i haven’t always been able to write or think in ways some healthy parts of my brain know that i can. And I’d often be attempting to de-legitamize an obsession or the delusion without realizing that that was all i was attempting to do. No conflicts.

ok so, welcome let’s begin 🙂

No Conflicts and Aspirations

Genuine curiosity could beat my depression.
It could beat my procrastination and depression.
How do i tap into it?
The elements of freedom below help.
Paying attention whilst not criticizing falling into the lava stream.. acknowledging it and letting go; allowing myself to let go.
This is how I will study, this is how i will become somebody.
Every moment is an opportunity to train.

‘No conflict’ is a feeling. It is supported by calm bandwidth.
Calm bandwidth includes nonjudgemental awareness of thoughts and feelings.
This is done by understanding my mind and being non-reactive.

No conflict is a feeling.
The feeling of urgency is a conflict with the present moment.
Depression is a hinderance;
recognise the hinderances.
In life, much more is part of my meditation.
Every moment is an opportunity to sculpt the mind.

Since returning to this, I feel I can use this writing as the key to a happier, more content mind.  I’ve been on the verge of it for some time.  Going the extra mile has not been so easily seen.  Breaking through the fog is happening. Going the extra mile.

Here’s another excerpt from my imaginary book entitled No Conflict, this chapter is called ‘Jobs and Career Kerfuffle’:

Jobs and career kerfuffle

Just like I held on to education hanging off a cliff, I also have attempted many jobs. I think I counted fourteen. But after Uni, the first job I had was that of a ‘customer service engineer’, which could have been great fun as you get to plan your jobs to a certain extent. However, as you can imagine, even at this later time, it was too difficult and opened my eyes to something that was a delusion but I am going to treat it as an obsession because there was some debate, and it does not really matter now what it was. Fresh perspectives here. It was something prominent at that time which was in no way new but predominantly surfaced. It deescalated after I left the job, and then I had another well paid job, as a ‘technical author’ for a building firm, which could’ve been amazing too, I could’ve saved, but my condition and paranoia were on an intrusive level for that one too. Right now, I have chosen to study for a masters in neuroscience, so there’s some justice as the rewards are going to be fruitful. Rewind a minute.

I first recall being overly distressed by a particular idea around age thirteen. It was different from derealisation from my OCD and opposite to the organic spontaneity any philosophers or scientists would feel. What on earth am I on about? I already mentioned it but because it is interesting, without further ado, here is what initially I thought it was;

As a question:

‘How is there something but not nothing at all?’

Outside of the feeling (of mental illness), it is an interesting question. I have looked into the science, religion and philosophy, but still, it remained. What do I mean by this? Surely it’s just an interesting question, right? No, what it always felt like was a disturbing conflict. No amount of anything helped it. If I think about it now away from the feeling, the science takes you into quantum physics and the philosophy is existential cognitive reasoning like Descartes ‘I think therefore I am’ which I have his book of meditations about. However, none of this searching helped my ‘problem’. What it was, is the delusional assumption that 

‘Everything should be nothing’. 

Due to the disturbing feelings it caused, my torment was eventually recognized, and I was prescribed antipsychotics. Even though that word sounds all scary, it was accurate. Words can’t describe how it would make me feel, and that is what mental illness is. However, right now and toward the future, I am going to treat it as an obsession, because that’s all it is now. Like I say no amount of philosophy, science or religion helps solve my disturbing conflict. No amount of my ERP made it lessen but you know what, it does now, I have called it an ‘existential phenomenon’ before, I frequently call it a disturbing conflict which is accurate. I deal with it now by delegitimising it like any other obsession. So as I have been building neuronal connections it is not so overpowering, but the feeling does still arise from time to time. I used to avoid certain situations, people, and ‘sit on the fence’ because of it, yes compadres, this is why, and I notably remember it stopping me in those jobs like that I speak of once I finished University six years ago. I remember as the field engineer, I was attempting to learn on the job, which should’ve been fun, but I was so preoccupied in a somewhat disturbing way, by this, (not so much the other obsessions anymore as I learnt to manage them), and I simply could not retain information or pay attention in a way that would have seen me succeed. Kudos for the positivity, Walks still. So, may we continue to delegitamize this existential phenomenon.

Many jobs I have had, one after the other. Many times I have quit not for want or lack of confidence more so debilitation and confusion. Kudos for the dedication. So you see, the disturbing conflict, as well as my OCD, is my illness. I’ve never fished for a diagnosis even though I welcomed one. I only welcomed one because it was a huge relief to find out there may be a way out. What now? Like I say I can immerse myself into neuroscience. I do have work to do of a mental health kind, though. This is part of it. Rewind.

I figured, relatively recently, there must be reasons why I still cannot pay attention as anyone does to not just studies and work, but past times too. Therefore, I acknowledge that ‘mental review’ as a compulsion is still prevalent; I overlooked this in a sense, that ‘little’ compulsions can still be as problematic as ‘big’ themes and such. I appear to have done enough work now with the disturbing conflict, that I can sink into focus and feel a lot more immersion. I have the opportunity to study now, so things are going to work out, alongside sharing this journey. But let me explain something; OCD cannot turn into psychosis, so to let you know, please don’t panic about that. I am aware that schizophrenia OCD is a common obsession so please do not think in any way that it is possible to ‘go mad’ from your condition. It doesn’t happen. Can I now treat it as an obsession? Was there some debate as to whether it could have been still? Absolutely, and I am looking at my condition in its entirety from a fresh perspective here. ‘Everything should be nothing’. Boy oh boy, I am somewhat free of it now, but I remember how isolating and disturbing it was, it seriously disrupted my life.  

As I already touched upon I must delegitimize it, notably realise that reality can be the axiom. An axiom is an innate fact in mathematics I believe, I won’t bother looking that up (but it’s a cool bit of vocab). I remember when I first started telling the nurses about it, most said ‘don’t think like that’ but I couldn’t express enough how I had no choice. However, a good psychiatrist and my most recent therapist totally understood how it was for me. I must realise now how good freedom from it is, keep writing and meditating, and remember. It is bliss compared to what it was. Free of the conflict means that I can focus all my ERP efforts on my condition and continue to do what I want to do.  

When the first psychiatrist that listened to me properly understood it, she said ‘how can I deny that I am something.’ That is what it does. It is disturbing. It was a relief when someone finally understood how it was for me. Anyway, back to the present. It is gone now mostly. Although, what I want to do now is I want to feel it, I want to keep healing, as soon as I start to fight the feeling, start to argue with it in any way, the disturbing feeling comes back. Feeling it like this again makes me wonder how I managed so much. I want to feel it though, bring it on. I no longer fight by way of argument causing torment, more so I fight by way of allowing and not responding, but seeking it out and applying calm bandwidth to do this.

As I hit the gym today, obsessions popped up and made me want to retreat, it’s not to do with lack of concentration, it’s a genuine feeling of compulsion. The feelings involved at the moment are guilt, doubt and depression. They always were. These types of feelings are so overwhelming but I managed to separate myself from them (there’s a word for this, which I won’t bother looking up I forget. (There’s a lack of vocab for ya), and choose not to respond to them essentially choosing not to ruminate. Realising their illegitimacy, took some work but I got there. I love working out. You see I have to create head space for the doubt stream, but delegitamize it also. Now that I have done a lot of meditation I will speak of later, I am ready to proceed with the athleticism, which is something I want, alongside study. I held onto education from the edge of my cliff, and attempted over fourteen jobs. Walks, man, have compassion for this, for yourself. I am unique, but special. The mental health work I mentioned I need to do now, is in part visiting art galleries and being a hermit in a tree. More on this later.

 ”All that is gold does not glitter, Not all those who wander are lost. The old that is strong does not wither, Deep roots are not reached by the frost. From ashes a fire shall be woken, A light from the shadow shall spring. Renewed shall the blade that was broken, The crownless again shall be King.” – J.R.R. Tolkein

Even if the rumination is ‘real’ in theme, self-sabotage is not acceptable.

Relation-blips and Self Medication (..A blast from the Past)

I’m going to share some of my imaginary book. This chapter is in the journal section and is entitled ‘Relationblips’

I used to sweat like crazy, partly meds, partly anxiety. Rivers. So, relationships? At all possible? No because my relationship OCD would be so overpowering even before I got there. Therefore, obsessing was ripe and my ‘affair’ would be rumination (part of the same compulsion of mental argument) about the person’s loyalty and my own loyalty, finding ‘answers’ to this, and I would also be arguing with myself as to whether I carried myself and appeared okay, the latter being a compulsion until recent times. Everyone does I know, but let me explain, I’d be obsessed with my partners’ safety – over-protective to a compulsive degree. Sometimes it was clear that I was ‘obsessing’, other times it would be a very private affair. I had it more severe in more recent years, though, with a potential mate. The story was that I was not interested… the truth was that I was genuine but distracted by my condition therefore, too preoccupied.

There have been a few times throughout my life when people have presumed I am high on drugs like cocaine (as I appeared charged up due to anxiety) as well as weed (as I appeared dopey due to fatigue and a delusional feeling). It is a real shame that I was not (for the most part). The internal conflict and anxiety years ago was just chronic. Say if I had an obsession to ‘answer’, the conflict would cause sweat and confusion, and that is the least worse symptoms. Imagine being in a night club, which is stressful already, and then having an obsession feeling like a conflict, becoming totally preoccupied, the only relief getting as wasted as possible. For the most part I started smoking as a stress reliever as soon as I could (not to be cool like my peers). This is accurate because I remember thinking my auntie smoked ‘cos of her problems so perhaps it’ll work for me. I was right, it did help the anxiety. Any immediate relief was welcomed. I’m not saying others don’t use these things as stress relievers too, but I am accurate, for me it was purely that in those moments, I remember thinking these things and nothing else, many a time. 

I used to drink a lot. Drinking gave me some relief, some fun times, but not all the time like others. My relationship with alcohol has been varied I have had the pleasure, but short-lived and bizarre. I, however, feel that upon my initial diagnosis of OCD at twenty-two, I should’ve embraced sobriety and become a hermit in a tree, but let’s not have regrets as this future to come is the only future I am destined to have. Spiritual again… perhaps I should travel to Holy Isle.

This section is about relationships, so let me explain, by the time I sought out a girlfriend, I was rather ill, I wasn’t fully aware of it, but selective mutism was the least of it. I could not pay attention. I simply could not. I didn’t know it was mental illness, but deep down I knew something was up. Because of the diversion of the obsessions I was very much ‘compulsively happy’ instead of being calm, happy and trusting like I am a lot more so now. I applaud my efforts but upon reflection, understandably did not succeed at living a functional life. I did not want to lose my virginity, any more than I neededto find an answer to an obsession, or attempt using alcoholism as a relief from my condition. Not many knew of my struggle, as I was a nice person who was a bit weird sometimes, and of course ‘happily compulsive’, nevertheless amusing when intoxicated. We are talking about young adulthood here. When I’m calm confident assertive and caring, like I am a lot more nowadays, I’m a really great guy. I just couldn’t tap into that sh*t. I just couldn’t there was no way the doubt stream was giving me a break. I did split up ‘because of me’, it was no excuse, and I did not understand what was going on in my grey nut, keeping mental illness ablaze, therefore, could not explain that I did. Of course I ended things with old girlfriends, with subconscious intentions to fight my illness.

Often short-lived through alcoholism and bizarre at times. Nevertheless, I tried what I thought we deserved with someone I found attractive. I was wrong, it wasn’t what we deserved, what I deserved was treatment. What I am getting at is that despite honourable attempts, nothing resembling a relationship or a fling was possible and I wish I had realised what mental health was about and trusted my instincts that something was seriously wrong with me. There is no point in having a partner if I am anxious about the ‘what ifs’ and the ‘should haves’ all the time. There’s no point if mental health is just going to decline and ignoring it does not work. Perhaps I was still on the same desperate belief I had way back in the beginning, perhaps I was hoping I’d ‘snap out of it one day.’

Of course, we never know what may be around the corner and one can fall in love instantly when we least expect it and in another dimension, my experiences would have been fruitful. I regret I wasn’t there, in the moment, doing all the things I could do right now free of my condition. Many opportunities for happiness fell from my grasp. But, right now I’m happy with the way things are going to play out.

My parents were very good-natured and supportive. There is autism and mental illness running through my family, this isn’t a problem as if I wasn’t so ill I could have communicated more effectively with them. Alcoholism and emotional problems were present in some respects but I do not feel they were a cause of my problems any more than cancer may be caused by various combined factors. Causes of a lot of mental illness are inconclusive; huge chemical imbalances, I’m undecided whether they are a cause or result probably a result more so than not in my opinion, therefore, environment and genes are causes as is the fact that everyone interprets experiences differently. I definitely have chemical imbalances such as when I would go selectively mute: the feeling, no one gets that anxious to have to do that.

Many people are emotionally unstable and if I were not so far gone, I would have rectified my relationship with my parents during my teens and had a much less miserable time as a result. I do remember OCD in particular suddenly appearing in the final year of primary school, man I was so clever to hide it. But even then I knew it was irrational but knew nothing of mental illness to be able to explain it. It was brewing, but I’d never had obsessions like that before – I was quick to hide it. Yea I know a mountain to climb for a kid. As OCDers, we often know how irrational our obsessions are which is cursed. Therefore, the only benefit of a more emotionally aware family was the fact that we may have realised I was hiding it and we would have got a diagnosis before I went off to live on my own, only because I would have really liked my mother to experience my good mental health before she passed away. This is no one’s fault. I’m a master of disguise.  

The main problem observable by my family during my adult life is that which is elusive, mischievous, deviant and tedious: the gambling addiction. I admit that it has gone on until the release of ‘mental blocks’ in recent times. It switched and mischievously hid, restricting my ability to actually work on my mental health. As I review this, I am ready to write the final section of my book, which is best to be written after addiction has completely gone and mental health is the only priority. It is, like I imagined, far easier to sit with the core feelings, and appreciate freedom, now I am not ensnared by the addictive urges and storylines which dictated my life to some extent. A year on now since I started writing, the addiction has only just completely gone. I’m not seeking reassurance or exaggerating, it truly has gone now. Therefore I am able to write and meditate with purely pure intentions. I may have been a master of disguise growing up, but now I can be a master full stop.

New joys are sobriety and mental health. All views are subjective, what someone thinks of you is part of their thinking, therefore it doesn’t define you.

The art gallery – how interesting.  The doubt stream tried to take up full bandwidth. I persevered and read about a few things. But I needed to create head space for the doubt stream, I couldn’t turn it off. Blown up ‘guilt’ was there…

Post War

Realising what causes my mental blocks, which are, upon summary, conflict without a comprehensible source.

I am so used to the compulsion of mental review, that I can’t always catch myself doing it.

Its harder and darker than the rumination of the non-sufferer.

There’s a lot of conflict involved and a lot of self analysis.

This post will be brief but concise.

I’ve begun my course of study now, I’ll let you know what it is once I graduate.

Perfect timing.

I find it as hard to pay attention to peppa pig, as I do quantum physics, when the mental blocks are heavier than the Earth.

I do not have obsessions anymore like they were years and years ago, that is, total preoccupation with chronic anxiety + depression alongside..

However, the blocks are a motherfucking beast of an enemy.

Could they be autism? It’s possible cos eye contact and social interation is exceedingly awkward when im not feeling right.

I am very happy with my first few posts, I hope they entertain and help.

Helping others very much so helps ourselves. I am working things out on the outskirts, in the suburbs of my condition.

Wisdom has been stumbled upon, like acceptance I mentioned.

Zen Buddhism is a philosophy.

I am not too interested in religion, apart from this zen philosophy.

So.. a few notes from my imaginary book today:

No ego, no urgency, no conflict.

Doubt and delusion. I experienced the psychotic episode, refer to this when I do.

Five hinderances. (a video I watched about a shaolin monk and some very wise teachings)

Understanding the mind and being non-reactive is for healing.

Enjoying the quality of things. No conflict in any form, including doubt, insecurity and ego.

If I do not enjoy the current thing, the current task, then it is likely the same will always occur in future tasks.

All the clouds and the lava stream are not real, they are a part of me but are brain-random stuff. They only hold meaning I give to them.

Feelings are subjective, but gotta’ feel fully.

As soon as I examine, I need to let it be, not ‘answer’ or fight.

Make room for the mental illness, but I can speed up when I do not engage them, the volcano or lava stream, by way of calm bandwidth.

Mindfulness means opening up, but not engagining especially obsessing.

No forcing.

No conflict by being nonjudgemental, fully, with the object of meditation. Even smaller doubts… everything.

And finally…

Never any urgency.

Beyond Compulsion

I mentioned exposure response prevention therapy (ERP), which is when we dive into feelings associated with our obsessions, usually anxiety.   Well here’s one for me;

I read an article related to an obsession I had, well it was differen’t it was more of a disturbing conflict but I can treat it as an obsession now.

The article talks of the latest understanding of origins of the Universe being quantum fluctuation. My obsession was extremely disturbed by the idea of ‘something’ as opposed to ‘nothing’ being the axiom. An axiom is an innate fact, in for example mathematics, I believe, I won’t look it up but there’s some vocab for you. So, I would doubt reality itself. Not in a way that was interesting, but in a way which was disturbing.

So briefly on the article – that’s cool, but that’s still ‘something’. Why, or rather how, would the quantum fluctuation have started? Should that not be there? The idea of God didn’t help my condition as it is somewhat kicking the can down the road, impossible to grasp, and even so, that’s still ‘something’. Clearly nothing satisfied my ‘problem’.  The compulsion of mental argument did not solve any of it. What i call the ‘antidote’ does, which allows me to gracefully step out of it.

The origins of the universe is an interesting topic to physicians… what I was doing is not that, not healthy, my mind simply latched onto it since a pretty young age, and still it becomes a rush of anxiety and disturbing feeling of conflict.

The answer to my ‘problem’ now, outside of the conflict, is that it is OK that ‘something’ is the axiom. There’s nothing wrong with that. My antidote was right. (this is my antidote of recent times – ‘‘the axiom being something, not nothing’’).

How on earth is this related to an illness? Catastrophic feelings are my illness. A feeling that something is horribly wrong was there whilst reading, and a feeling of overwhelming responsibility which OCDers get came along, but I do not feel delusional anymore. This is a success and a huge step for me.

I am writing to help myself in ways which are profound and provide clarity, which is worthy of recording. Isn’t it just like a diary? Yea but I have a good structure now and putting it all together will really help me, but also potentially provide an interesting read.

Rewind. I touch reality by letting go of ‘nothing’ being the axiom. Therefore, It’s Okay to let the search go. It is useful to remember, that any thought or feeling or mental block isn’t real. Even the disturbing conflict is not real. In a sense, the present moment is the only thing happening therefore the breath is the only thing real. I often would not speak of obsessions because of how irrational they were: this is indeed common, but it was my only mistake, and one that I would indeed shout my mouth off at my teenage-self to rectify. I guess, mental blocks, addiction, and debauchery (alcohol, not the other two: sex and drugs, they wouldn’t work due to lack of pleasure for the most part) stopped me from attempting to explain things for the first time until well into adulthood.

My condition now latches onto how others feel as well as  ‘real event’ OCD.

So how on earth does one treat that, if the thing is potentially ‘real’. Or at least relates to a real event. Well may we realise it’s the same game the OCD is playing– the feelings, the mental argument (my compulsion): OCD has taken the real event and twisted it and unleashed a tsunami in the brain and subsequently the mind.

Most people do not speak of their problems, true, they choose to get smashed or ignore them, however, if genuine mental illness is present, it is probably important that problems are examined, because they stop us being able to function on a day to day basis. Throughout my life, natural enjoyment has been sucked from me by my mental illness, whilst trying to function by attempting to hold down countless jobs or relationships. Being ‘selfish’ at a young age would have been a good shout for me, like becoming a hermit in a tree.

By training to live without the addiction too, I am not responding to the compulsive urge I mentioned last time. It is correct that this is necessary, it being an overlapping symptom of core emotions.

A ‘music’ obsession over ten years ago was just as severe as relationship and harm OCD I had, and it wasn’t even violent or existential like in more recent times. See it wasn’t about the topic at all. This does show, by me as a prime example, that the theme of the obsession is never ending, it is not the problem even though it feels like it, its not to do with the theme its to do with how we respond to it, rather, the compulsion is something we need to begin to be mindful of and quit fighting, arguing, chasing or legitamizing the obsession.

Instead, let’s build innate self-worth and acceptance by beginning to, and proceeding to not perform the compulsions, whatever your compulsions may be. They are a response keeping the fire burning. It seems with me today, that unconditional acceptance trumps OCD. But getting there, now that’s going to be very different in terms of difficulty levels for everyone who suffers; A ladder of exposures may help (ERP), meditation may help (learning mindfulness), more traditional therapy (CBT) may be of assistance. A combination of these has set me on my way now. Mental health is more important than anything in life. Never again will I not unconditionally accept what is going on up in my grey nut. Never again will I not incorporate what I’ve learnt and ultimately accept myself. Never again will I feel regret, guilt, listen to the doubt stream or shame. There’s nothing wrong with reasonable regrets, nevertheless whilst exacerbated it is like I say – a red herring in this sh*t. I suffer with what they call ‘real event OCD’.  Relationship and harm OCD I now have totally managed. But real event is tricky due to playing on real events, sometimes things which others find insignificant, but sometimes with significant events too. Not to mention false or exacerbated memories.

So, mental argument as a compulsion:

There has been trauma in my recent past, but despite this, being able to reflect on the outside of my illness is a joy. As I have now presented to you, there is such thing as the compulsion of mental argument, which fuels an overwhelming feeling of responsibility and is fuelled by, especially, feelings such as doubt and guilt. I’ve had it constant throughout the day before, now with bandwidth I can delegitamize it. Upon reflection, there was not ‘thinking’ going on, like spontaneous and organic thinking. Instead, the arguments were a form of self-sabotage, a hunt for an answer to ‘resolve’ the doubt stream, which is what compulsions are.

It’s so obvious it was a compulsion when I remember what I used to do – try to find an answer all day, but even when I did it wouldn’t stick for long. Such as ten years ago when my OCD was at its worse when not violent in a topic, about my music course, but it was merciless in its severity.

This mentally manifested OCD aka ‘pure O’ is the same as someone performing physical compulsions, which are tiring and tedious, depressing and exhausting… but in the head instead: the chasing of an uncertainty, the fuelling of a doubt. An answer really does not stick and you can get pulled deeper and deeper into the lava stream, therefore, any real ‘answers’ come a million miles away from this condition.

As I mentioned, before when young and more recently, I did have more well-known themes resurface such as relationship OCD and harm OCD, both extremely debilitating. I am going to search my intellect and soul (Ok I admit a ‘spiritual’ reference here although I wasn’t into that much), for the answers and the reflection, at a time more important than any, since therapy both professional and personal. No one least my intrusive thoughts can stop me.

Since returning to this, I feel I can use this writing as the key to a happier, more content mind.  I’ve been on the verge of it for some time.  Going the extra mile has not been so easily seen.  Breaking through the fog is happening: Going the extra mile.

I assume that it is possible to be fixed but not cured, as I could say I was fixed for many short periods throughout my twenties, but then after a while, mental illness would come back to munch on my grey matter. Literally? I don’t know, I’m not a neuroscientist yet. It would come back because I did not have total understanding of my somewhat diverse web of symptoms and misunderstood my compulsion as legit, and not know what it would take for consistent recovery.

On my second round of cognitive behavioural therapy (CBT) at age twenty-three, I was shown Dr Paul Salkovskis’ diagram about OCD and its maintaining factors. A ‘mental argument’ was a factor in fuelling the intrusions, alongside anxiety and depression, alongside physical compulsions and checking, alongside reasoning bias. Reasoning bias is an interesting one because I would often see things as ‘proof’ that the obsessions were significant. The feeling it reinforced was overpowering when engaging in that sh*t.

It was a great diagram which is why I kept it and even photocopied it for my friends at Brighton Priory hospital three years ago. I realised, when I had that round of CBT, that I was doing it with a single obsession I had, (the mental argument), but I did not recognise the extent of my illness (hidden behaviours like avoidance). I did not explain my mental blocks they could have also been to blame for non-consistent recovery. Autism is a possibility here too because it’s in my family.

So we fixed me at the time by applying ERP by using a loop tape of the ‘should statements’, which was eventually a huge relief as you desensitize yourself to the obsessions. I’d listen to them in particular when my anxiety was highest throughout the day, or when I was experiencing a particularly intense flare up. A predominant ‘should’ statement; the mental conflict was a preoccupation. The feelings involved I’d say are what mental illness is. Catastrophic for me but now letting go is the game I play, or at least take the feelings with me throughout the day.

So the most common ‘should’ statements for me were: ‘‘should I be doing the music’’, since that old course that it latched onto, and similar to the first one when I was very young, which came back in recent times of: ‘‘should I stab myself in the neck’’.  The subsequent rumination was much darker somewhat than just answering it, it latched onto my self-worth as a person. It was only the ‘benign’ topic because at the time I had dropped a music course and my OCD went mental.

Way back when, loop tapes of any thoughts related to the obsessions and new understanding worked, I was fixed, but unfortunately not fixed for so long back then, because I was quick to switch obsessions, pick up addictions, as well as real event obsessions taking over. I have overlooked real event OCD until recent times. The mental review is exhausting. I have not really come across anyone with mental blocks like me, despite chatting many times up my support group. I also did not talk about the existential phenomenon (i also called it) that was present, which was always a delusion, unfortunately different to derealisation from obsessions. Derealisation from obsessions occur when we perform a compulsion so much, that we become incredibly detached and feel spaced out. But what it was is irrelivant now.

More unclear compulsive thinking like chasing uncertainties I tend to call ‘rumination’. It is part of the same compulsion, because they are all about fuelling the intrusive images, urges or feelings such as doubts and exacerbated guilt (keeping an obsession an obsession).  Doubts are endless. Takes a while to get that. Once one feels resolved, due to the condition, the brain picks up another, and another, and another, until exhaustion is the least troublesome symptom. Does rumination occur about anything positive? I have discovered it does respond to excitement, so we will see, but it isn’t helpful, not really, upon reflection it is a response to the doubt stream, just lighter and sneaky. I have been swimming deep, at times, in the lava stream under waves of doubt.

If I didn’t have my condition, I’d dismiss an intrusive thought I have right now about unjustly judgements, as I know that what most people do when they are being judgemental is reflecting what is wrong with themselves… it is about them, not you. With me though, the thoughts around the obsession fuel a hyped up feeling of resentment and it is tricky to say the least. It’s a mini obsession because there is huge amounts of self-sabotage going on. Good training though, can I truly build bandwidth and let it go? The emotions don’t go so easy. But they will if I don’t fuel them. Sit with them, give them tea. But I will not feed them breakfast fuel for the fire they so badly want to kindle.

A few years ago, I would desperately tell my friends about my OCD on social media, this was not a mental argument exactly, I wasn’t finding answers to the doubt stream, or chasing uncertainties, it was, however just not a very wise thing to do if I appeared self-centred. The potential rumination I was subconsciously was heading toward did not help unravel whatever my obsession was at the time, or help my mental health, unfortunately, because my thinking was sporadic. Memory becomes affected I’d often forget what I actually said.

‘Should I, shouldn’t I’, contradictory obsessions, confusing anxiety, depression, desolation by mental block: These are my condition. I tend to be a kind and caring person. However, OCD can latch on to everyday things, and turn the slightest judgements of myself, or others into mini obsessions. This is something that has indeed gone on until recent times, and I am unravelling right now: the rumination, I’m onto ya, it’s still there somewhat and its still unreasonable. Therefore…

Sir, it is safe to say ‘Pure O’ still affects me in the form of ‘mental review’. It is a response to exacerbated emotions, which come along predominantly with OCD. It causes depression. I will review endlessly what I said in social situations, I will review many aspects of everyday life. It sure is doubt driven and hard to really get that at first.

It is an illusion of the disorder that the compulsion is of some benefit especially with lighter rumination. It is a million miles away from problem solving even when it feels important. Everyone has doubts right, but this is different, they don’t got it as a compulsion.

What to do if you feel caught up with an obsession? Getting the obsessions down on paper does not always work if you are still trying to answer it. Ignoring the condition makes it worse. Therefore, like for me in the beginning, CBT did not go the right way initially with this. CBT with exposure response prevention (ERP), however, is a better way, there’s nothing wrong with finding core fears, I just was not introduced effectively to the process. (Try a loop tape like with me, or exposing yourself gradually to, say knives or other situations, depending on your manifestation). I’ll try to explain things clearly, with accuracy, and hopefully get to where I need to be, and create an exciting read whether or not I share this with the world.

I have come a long way, light me a victory dance, but realize I still need to recognize a mental compulsion when it arises, delegitimize it, and accept any judgements, which arise. Judgements can be sporadic and compulsive! No amount of mental review that goes on as a disorder consists of any product, it only serves to fuel the feelings for instance exacerbated guilt, and it is not about problem-solving. I have heard sufferers talk about real event OCD and it is indeed hard when it linked to a real, legitimate scenario… however, the feelings that we are fuelling: they are the illness. It does not matter if it is on a real event, it is quite simply wrong to be hostile towards ourselves. Paying attention and examining without ‘answering’ is paramount and allowing with calm bandwidth, instead of the doubtful streams taking up bandwidth, is key.

I suppose that, the core feelings simply are not present in the non-sufferer therefore none of this is even an issue in the slightest… therefore, I was cursed, but now blessed due to having the compassion that I may not have had in a parallel dimension.

In my self-help corner of the room, alongside my fantastic musical taste, I read the ‘Mindfulness OCD Workbook’ by Jon Hershfield and Tom Corboy (which helped me realise that mental review was still my condition). It is easy to follow and a compassionate read. Another new weapon in my arsenal is the ‘Mind Workout’ by Mark Freeman. A true master full of innovation. These have been an adjunct to my therapy, and I could get used to my newfound focus. We are changing all the time, mentally and physically, but usually, people are themselves, i.e. have innate mental health. I suppose what I am doing right now, is I am noticing compulsiveness in the mind, not responding, letting it go, building stronger neuronal connections, and enjoying it.

Even less intense rumination can become tedious. And another intrusive doubt will always take its place once one is ‘resolved’. Realise this, fully. Take as looong as I need not to fuel my condition.

I must realise now how good freedom from the compulsion is, keep writing and meditating, and remember what it did consume. It is bliss compared to what it was.

Free of conflict means that I can focus all my ERP efforts on my condition and continue to do what I want to do. 

Just a Feeling

Alright, sooo in my first ever post last week I mentioned that I found ‘antidotes to core feelings’.  I’d like to share just some of these feelings and see where it takes us.

I first recognised a ‘core’ ten years ago before diagnosis when at the same time could barely tell what day it was. I would call anxiety things like ‘the core of my mind’. So, I had a glimpse of awareness. Right now, ten years on rather than hanging off my diagnosis of OCD and depression saying well that’s that, I am looking at things from a fresh perspective, with non-judgemental awareness, to see if I can get closer to where I need to be before preparing for my course of study.

Upon review, I’m feeling a bit lost this morning, a few months on since I started writing. Why do I procrastinate today though – the compulsive urge that is mostly always there? Is it linked to laziness though? Could it be linked to ADHD symptoms? No, I don’t think so, not for me. All I want to do is dance in the rain. But let us rewind before we move forward, some core feelings I recognized ten years ago, and to acknowledge today are:

–    Delusional/depression

This feeling sparks an idea that ‘everything should be nothing’. Whether or not it was a delusion, (when I was controlled by it, I thought it was and one psychiatrist thought it was) it doesn’t matter anymore, I can treat it as if it were existential OCD. This can be tricky because even in the real world there’s no answers, so the need for certainty feels even worse. The feeling is that of a disturbing conflict and detachment making reality foggy. So, I relieve myself from its’ grasp by realising that reality can be the ‘axiom’: which is the whole truth.

Despite the difficulty I had with this particular feeling, different to anxiety I got with other obsessions like harm, I can treat it as an obsession now, paying attention and acknowledging, and not responding. Once upon a time I couldn’t let it go, depression from it was just one of my struggles, but now through training, I can. With existential OCD, I would read scientific articles that are in anyway related to the idea, I suppose things that trigger it, but choose not to respond whilst getting a better knowledge of the mental argument or finding of ‘answers’ being compulsions. Phew… deep breath. I remember what it was like, and my brain has changed. Let’s move onto less intense but troublesome feelings to dance in the rain with:

–    Conflict of letting go (and remembering).

This proves quite exciting to work out. The more I pay attention with trust, the more I can let go of whatever it is I am paying attention to, but subsequently the more I let go the more I ultimately remember. Confused? I hope not too much. This, it seems is about my mental blocks, which may be autism as I am not a stranger to, or simply where my mental illness always was.

Alternatively it could be down to being so used to mental argument and review. For instance, once reading, it takes time to sit through the confusion this kind of thing creates. The fog and the replay. Perhaps many have the sort of barrier I speak of, and it is just a little different and exacerbated for me.

I have to let go of conflict more fully now than I have done in the past, to be able to read, study, have fun, fight healthily, eat well and dance. I note many feelings as ‘conflict’ now, it’s a fresh perspective and one way of observing.

–    Overwhelmed when searching for information, or shopping

I recall this since I was very young. Severe indecision and yes, even anxiety when shopping. What a memory, could symptomatic indecision be linked to my mental blocks? Yes, but potentially all of these feelings are. Visiting an art gallery the other day was ripe for this kind of feeling, it sparked this kind of anxiety due to the vast amounts of information on display. Learning to let go in this kind of place is important. Book shops and art galleries could be my past-times for a while in order to provoke these kind of feelings, learning to let go of conflict and navigate through the storm.

–    The compulsive urge

Now then, this little number pops up especially when responding to the urgency one next. However, I have realised that it is present a lot more than I thought, probably because my OCD used to be almost constant. I will understand this more in time. To recap -A compulsion, as well as overtly physical, is covertly: an anxiety response to the doubt stream; fighting with the thoughts, some becoming obsessions, notably trying to answer them. Mental blocks: this is a feeling of conflict which provokes it, and the compulsive urge is often in response to unreasonable feelings of responsibility. Let’s take a breather;

Healthy guilt: learning opportunity

Unhealthy guilt: unreasonable responsibility

There is an inflated sense of responsibility with this sh*t. The compulsive urge also loved my addiction which happened to be gambling. It was just ideal for it because there was no stopping, no break. This feeling of compulsion; it is not the same as addiction, whether or not professors want to disagree with me or not. I believe this from my experiences, because with addiction, some sort of desire is being fulfilled whereas compulsive responses are totally involuntary, a desperate attempt at fleeing obsessions. It would try to get me to answer obsessions, find answers and engage in mental argument, in many ways all day.

Phew… deep breath. I remember how it was. Therefore this compulsive urge did not cause my addiction, and addiction is a separate issue, however the compulsive urge alongside the compulsive aspect of my addiction made me more vulnerable to its’ extremities.

–    Urgency and ‘needing to be somewhere else’

Indeed, as general as it may sound, is an example of when, in its most obvious, when I am waiting in a queue or if I am out simply walking or exercising. The urge to ‘be somewhere else’ is incredibly strong. This type of ‘procrastination’ must be common, but this, I suppose, is linked to the blown-up emotions and exacerbated everything.

For instance, another everyday feeling like ‘approval seeking’; a feeling many with emotional problems or even non sufferers get but it is certainly exacerbated with these core feelings floating about. This feeling of urgency is not to be underestimated, it is powerful.

These last two core feelings, the compulsive urge and urgency, are certainly sparked before or after my OCD comes along. On the other hand, maybe coupled they are my OCD, alongside the doubt stream. The doubt stream isn’t a core feeling, the urgency is, but I’ll acknowledge it throughout because it takes up full bandwidth when it is triggered. By this I mean it uses up my full attention. The doubt stream is more of a compulsion, because part of it is the searching for answers and endless doubts. The ‘feeling of compulsion’ is what I call both these feelings nowadays, if I do not wish to examine them.

Journal excerpt:

A few months on and the calm is here more so, there is an improvement. Whether this is down to quitting addictions and focusing on mental health more so… 

A self-help ramble, a conversation with myself…. What the bloody hell is this, a treaty with my mental illness? The core feelings are like a fast-flowing lava eruption surrounded by a ferocious storm, where thoughts are catapulted at it like lightning.

These are not all the feelings and emotions from my mind, but they are some which I have learnt to dance with. Let’s examine some more:

Feelings of severe insecurity, possibly doubt

This occurs sometimes on its own, an overwhelming feeling of insecurity, especially in the morning and why I used to chain smoke. The antidote is something I have recognised from the start, I will get to, but realising it is an antidote is empowering now. I’ll move on to some of these antidotes in a later article. Perhaps this insecure feeling is cheeky and actually triggers the doubt stream.

 –         Depression

More generalised depression, certainly a core feeling, gets me staying in bed for days or a lack of interest in anything. Sometimes caused by all these feelings, and the exhaustion. There’s no denying it. With the core feelings, like thoughts, I can acknowledge them then allow conflict to go. But like I will come to explain, I must apply calm bandwidth, because the doubt stream takes up full bandwidth. Calm bandwidth is how I treat the attention taken away by the doubt stream, in effect I make space for it.

I am learning to pay attention with trust, (the opposite of doubt), calm (even if it isn’t here yet), and genuine curiosity (which helps overcome my depression). ‘Be curious’ as Stephen Hawking would say.

Thoughts and feelings are subjective, and less intimidating in a more healthy brain. I genuinely need to sit with them until they allow themselves to go. Good feelings await? It’s very possible as I have experienced freedom during meditation.


Anxiety is a symptom of every single one of these feelings. And sometimes it’s just there, floating. Sometimes its tension, like restlessness. This anxiety, it is easier somewhat to sit with than the core feelings I have examined, but on the other hand, it can arise more frequently and more diligently when attempting to do things such as write or even talk.

When I literally couldn’t talk as a teen, it was because my anxiety levels were high enough to make me sound incredibly strange so I engaged in selective mutism. This was an issue that played out in many scenarios in my past especially once intoxicated.

Anxiety is a completely natural experience, but some of us have perhaps overclocked motherboards. We have a zest for life but at the same time, crippling anxiety can affect our attempts at a wholesome life. I do want to stay strong and befriend it, seek it out. If I feel anxious, well that’s good. It is an opportunity to sit with and I often did, but wish I explained it was why I couldn’t speak properly when I was young. What I have experienced now from the other side, it is worth the labour to seek anxiety out, alongside seeking out uncertainty to help with doubts and the chasing  (certainty).

As I let go of an addiction fully, I can realise how it is different to my illness. Addiction can be viewed as an illness, but it is still different, it just makes us more vulnerable: if we have an illness we are more vulnerable to things like addictions in my opinion. But never again will I ignore what’s going on in my grey nut. And never will I respond to shame, depression or any other exacerbated emotion in a negative way.

Since I have now worked through a few core feelings by now, I am able to sit with the depression. I have to give it time, no forcing, time to go, breathing with it. My brain throws a number of thoughts at it I gotta’ just dance with.

I’ve stumbled upon acceptance, at least I hope. Acceptance and commitment therapy (ACT) explores ways to go for our goals whilst feeling our feelings. I am sculpting my mind, because I hope to be ready to do my course of study. I could talk more about my history in another article, but what’s important are the things I’ve touched upon here, and finding some peace of mind in the weeks to come. 

For The First Time

                As I join this blog I am going through a relatively good time with my mental illness, I am learning what it takes to nurture mental health as I prepare for a course of study. Self-care is important, and so is understanding what is going on up there in my grey nut.

So I want to feel feelings fully and choose not to respond, then they need not stick around. What am I on about, how do we feel fully? I am not sure it is possible to explain… we can give them a location, we can note them, we can ‘hold them in awareness’, perhaps all of these; it is something that has improved with time.

Constant themes are not my obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD) anymore, more so every doubt or emotion is exacerbated. Usually a sufferer has one of around thirteen themes, such as sexuality, harm, relationship, inappropriate or disgusting ideas (which are not a reflection of our true self – the opposite), existential, contamination… you may have read about some of them before. Compulsions on their own is possible, that is what non-sufferers think OCD is; counting, checking, tapping, becoming obsessional for no reason right? But that is not so common, having compulsions on their own. A compulsion is usually an immediate response to the constant distress and torment caused by obsessions. I had a few of these obsessions. But all I get now are periods of intense doubt, where any doubt can take over and ‘guilt’ gets sprayed around in the storm.  

A compulsion for me is a ‘mental argument’ and less intensely ‘rumination’: the chasing of an uncertainty or a response to the exacerbated guilt (the emotion of guilt being a red herring in this disorder). 

Happiness only comes about when we are not chasing it. As I write I am slightly less overpowered than usual, slightly less blocked, and slightly excited in this. If I feel feelings as if it were the first time, every time, then I will likely let go of judgemental feelings that fly around everything. Learning through experience that if we chase pleasure or even happiness, the process is in fact not a happy one, and we become locked in a never-ending pursuit.  Happiness is for the journey, it is something that arises itself from calm, and not chasing. I found antidotes to core feelings, through meditation, which will prove useful, if I recite them in a non-compulsive way, for the first time every time. 

When a thought or idea preoccupies the mind constantly for more than an hour a day in a way that causes constant distress and anxiety, it is called an obsession. Compulsions are the brains’ attempt at relief, but the relief is short lived, and they push us deeper into a contradiction, and deeper into the lava stream. Exposure-response prevention (ERP) therapy is what desensitises us to obsessions by formulating exposures to purposefully trigger ourselves whilst learning not to respond with a compulsion.

OCD, it has been known as the ‘doubt disease’ and ‘guilt disorder’ by many a therapist.

Each time I meditate now is for the first time, every time.  Zen Buddhists call this ‘beginner’s mind’. As I adapt mindfulness principles to my own condition, I can teach the brain not to hold on to obsessions (by not responding to them with a compulsion) notably because they are new every time, and support the idea that we do not have to respond but when I do, apply non-judgemental awareness and cultivate compassion towards myself. Even if the part of the brain that is keeping things around: the thalamus, amygdala or whichever else it may be, is troublesome, it needs to be sat-with, given tea, not fed but befriended.

Children’s book for mental illness

To turn my back around from COVID – 19driving me up the wall, I decided to pour my time and energy into a project that I have been wanting to start for a long time. Which is to write a children’s book on introducing mental illness with a gentle approach and write a book to parents – from a perspective of a child who struggles with a mental illness.

As a child, I struggled with OCD. I had intrusive sensations of having aluminum foil in my mouth for the longest time, where my parents thought I was making excuses from not wanting to study. I had a hard time focusing as different obsessions would come to my head over the years.

It was masked as my lack of discipline, lack of motivation or at times even attention deficit.

As an adult getting appropriate treatment, studying these disorders in-depth and working alongside young children, I started to feel the sincere need to advocate for the younger ones that can’t eloquently describe what they are feeling, or going through.

If there is a “no child left behind” for school, I want to make sure no child is left behind to get adequate mental (and physical) health care.

When I first got into the field, I never thought of working with young children.

While I always loved working with children in an informal setting, I just couldn’t see myself working with the little ones, as I would get impatient and frustrated. But in the past year – the more I engage in working with the little ones, I feel more drawn to advocate on behalf of their needs if they need the support.

I don’t want to rule out any population/setting out of my career, but the general flow seems to be going in a direction that I never expected before.

While I have some ideas on how to approach this, I am looking for ideas and suggestions from my audience.

Any suggestions? Ideas?

Can I “lose” a diagnosis?

About a year ago, I was diagnosed with Major Depression and OCD (obsessive compulsive disorder). It was a diagnosis that was agreed upon both my psychiatrist and I, as we went through the DSM together to make sure we were on the same page.

Throughout this past year, I went through phases of really struggling with some of the physical symptoms of OCD. But after about 6 months or so, it started to decrease. It shows more of as an anxious mind, then being obsessive over certain things unlike before.

14 months after, I moved to a new city, and met with a new psychiatrist recently.

After talking through my past diagnoses with my new doctor, he labeled major depression and generalized anxiety disorder as my diagnoses as he was filling the prescription. He said my thought process seemed more closely to someone that struggles with anxiety, rather than having the obsessive and compulsive behaviors/mindset.

I had to agree with him, but I was a bit lost.

Whenever I spoke about my mental health, I disclosed to others that I struggle with OCD and Depression – and it felt like it was just a part of me that I live my life with.

But when my new doctor said he doesn’t see the OCD part anymore, it felt like an old bud has left me.

Is this normal to feel this way? Or am I holding on to something strange?

SAD (Seasonal Affective Disorder

Summer was never a hard time of the year until recently. June 21st, 2018 – I started to experience something I never thought was possible.

Heart wrenching sadness, losing my appetite, and losing my desire to live.

From June 21st to July 4th of 2018, it was an absolute nightmare.

Following up to June 21st, I remember being extremely stressed. I had a lot in my mind for the future. While it was my hope to leave that summer feeling accomplished and successful, it took a complete opposite direction.

I had to cut short my fellowship, drastically altered my research – ended up losing my relationship with my mentor at that time, and I was contemplating about quitting my college education with just five classes left.

You may ask, why are you sharing this when it has nothing to do with the title?

Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD) – is commonly associated with depression in the winter time due to lack of sunlight.

However, 1/10 people who struggle with SAD have these symptoms in spring or summer. Unluckily, I may be that 1/10 that is experiencing this.

As June is here, I’ve been extremely anxious.

I try hard not to rely on my “emergency” medication (benzodiazaphines), but I had to rely on these pills to calm myself down in the last few days.

During the past couple of days, I felt sadness trickling in. I immediately panicked, thinking this is going to be another full blown depressive episode.

I struggled to get to my phone to get in touch with my doctor to get a refill on benzodiazaphines.

I did NOT get an official diagnosis from a doctor, but I felt the need to self-diagnose my symptoms to make more sense of why I feel this way.

It sucks. It is the worst nightmare of mine to repeat the same from last year. I know I am being treated with medication now, but I am greatly worried that this may be an annual ritual that I may have to “deal” with.

Some tell me to snap out of my own pity, some tell me to pray harder, some tell me to go get more sunlight for a “cure”.

The truth is, all of those will help. It sure will. But what’s even harder is the anticipation of these emotions rushing in. I can’t help but to get sucked in and find myself in a middle of a hurricane.

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