As I am readying myself for bed at a friend’s apartment tonight, a few things have been on my mind: When will they all come back? Will they wake me? Will someone step on me, trying to get to his/her bag, once they’re back? Etcetera, etcetera, etcetera… But the biggest question for my OCD mind is: Do I shower tonight or in the morning?
Lately, I have taken to showering at night, because I keep myself cool overnight (thus avoiding sweating for the most part), it keeps my bed cleaner, and it means I get to sleep later in the mornings before work.
However, having the OCD brainwaves means that I have a sort of inner freak-out if I am just recently cleaned (and have no extra change of clothes), and then come in contact with something dirty.
So, I was sitting on the floor, having a mental dilemma over whether it were better to shower now and feel clean for bed and all the other reasons I do it daily, or to shower in the morning, and not have to worry about how clean these futons and blankets and floors are, or if someone comes and sleeps, unshowered, next to me. While doing my best to convince myself that a morning shower was the best idea*, I couldn’t help but feel uncomfortable at still being in my ‘dirty’ clothes.
However, when I took off my tights, I had felt significantly better. I then noticed, as I still sat here contemplating, that taking off my socks had a similar effect. And, when I took off my bra, but had to take off my whole dress first in order to do it, I noticed how amazing it felt taking off the last of my clothes… and that’s when it occurred to me: What if the most comforting part of getting ready for bed isn’t actually the showering and getting clean, but the removal of clothing involved in that process?
Now, I’ve put my dress back on me – it’s a very pajama-y dress due to the stretchy cotton composition -, and I am ready for bed. And so is my brain. And it’s amazing.
Is that really all it takes to be ready for bed? Strip on down, and you’re good to go? It just may be that easy… I might have found a way to be okay again with not showering before I go to sleep. And for an area of life where OCD plays a very loud role in my head, the chance of having found a way to quiet it is huge. Really. And it’s also a fun idea, isn’t it, that taking off your clothes is all it takes to relax and be comfortable enough for bed? 🙂
*I actually started crying when I showered at night the last time, and people tried to hug me when they got home from their bar fun…
Day 12 of 40