i have ocd but not like pretty poem ocd, not like “oh you like things neat ocd.” i really like that spoken word piece about him loving a girl and getting stuck kissing her but it’s not accurate to me. i think i kiss nicely when i’m not so sad i can’t kiss at all. it’s hard to kiss me when i’m crying, standing half-naked in your room, out of my mind. it’s hard to kiss me when you’re angry because i’ve been stuck for two hours now. it’s not cute or poetic when it’s your own body betraying you.
i am sitting in the car with three other people i kind of but don’t really know when i realize. they have no idea. they have no idea and never will because my ocd doesn’t reach into my mouth. actually it lives in my throat. actually i can’t talk about it because it’s one of my compulsions.
did you know an eating disorder is an obsessive compulsive disorder. did you know that? when i was younger, ocd was about even lines and prettily arranged folding. the numbers thing is real though. i don’t even like math. did you know it’s how people with severe anxiety cope. i literally developed a mental illness to control another one. if that doesn’t sum up my life i don’t know what else does.
i laugh at something someone said and i think: how many of us have symptoms that aren’t something other people look out for. i mean, i look out for it, always, all the time, trying to help people like how i don’t get help. but i miss things, don’t i.
out of the corner of my eye i watch her draw a heart in the condensation of the window. i wonder if she’s hurting in ways other people don’t know about. i wonder if i can make it better or if i’m just projecting or if maybe we’re all just sitting in a car with our secrets, folding them up until they make paper birds inside of us.
i want to take out your paper birds and arrange them and maybe i can add mine. and one day when we’re drunk we’ll both take turns unfolding them. i will have to write in order to explain my compulsions. and the next day we’ll both get into cars with half-strangers and we’ll have to start again, learning someone’s sad bits so we can help them.
i hope it gets easier. i hope i learn to help everyone. i hope i find you one day and ask you if you’re okay like how i hope one day someone figures out i’ve got ocd without me having to tell them. but it’s okay.
i’m watching out for you. i want to be your someone.