During my cancer battle, the chemo treatments would cause for me to have many infections. Infections meant more fevers and medication; therefore, I inquired about what I could do in order to prevent the ongoing revolving cycle to cease. To have to battle cancer and repetitive infections was exhausting and taking a toll on my body. I could not stop the chemo so I needed to do something to prevent the infections. This meant that I needed to start to use face masks, sanitize my hands, refrain from touching my face and staying away from crowds during and after my treatment. Taking all the extra precaution was the answer I was seeking all this time and it was something that was uncomfortable but doable. Doing all these extra measures meant one less thing to worry about during this huge cancer battle which was a relief and one less obstacle in my journey to becoming cancer-free.
As a cancer survivor, I have become more obsessed with germs and bacteria so at times, I know that I have illustrated signs of OCD. Cancer did change me in many different ways. As a child growing up, I used to be the kid who love playing outdoors, go to the ranch, camping and be one with nature. Post cancer, I have become more of an indoor girl who thinks about how the rays of the sun can affect her if I don’t use the proper sunscreen and all the different bacteria that exists on the ground. Nowadays, since coronavirus started, I feel that I have relapsed in my OCD. With all the guidance being given on the news, I have been obsessed with cleaning everything. I am guilty of being one of those individuals who was constantly checking to purchase any disinfecting wipes or anything that included the word disinfecting and kills 99.9% of germs. The news was saying that the virus is practically on everything so I needed to clean everything that I purchase to prevent from getting the virus. All the information and steps that recommended to take reminded me of the steps that I would take to prevent getting infections. Only that now, covid-19 can actually kill me or not, we don’t know. Each person’s body handles the virus differently so we don’t really know how our body will handle it. I pray to God and ask HIM for protection and have faith that I will be okay. Even with my faith, I feel that I need to take the necessary steps to try to prevent infection. Although, it is true that I need to take the necessary steps, I do admit that I was severely obsessed and thought any deviation from the process would be detrimental. My loved ones brought it to my attention and I responded that I know what is needed to be done to prevent infections so they needed to listen to me and do as I do. It was like I was in battle mode again and I needed my loved ones (soldiers) to get on board. As they spoke to me again and as I took a few steps back, I saw myself through their eyes and I was being too harsh and one thing was to clean but it’s another to become obsessive. Despite my best efforts, I have OCD tendencies which I have learned to manage and recognize.
Learn to recognize and manage your side effects from dramatic experiences. Don’t beat yourself up for not thinking like everyone else. Love yourself completely, we are all different.