Fairly often, I become obsessed with something. Sometimes it’s a tv show, sometimes it’s something to buy (like researching different types of cars), sometimes it’s a website (a DID support forum I belong to)… But regardless of what it is, it always has the same feeling attached to it: the feeling of being out of control. It’s as though I lose control of myself, and this thing – whatever it may be – now has control over me. There’s a franticness to it. A sense that if I just do this thing more, I will reach happiness and/or satisfaction. Just five more minutes on the site. Just one more tv show to watch. And then this emptiness will be filled. However I realize that these obsessions don’t spring from an emptiness or lack of feeling. I think it’s quite the opposite actually. I think it’s feeling that I don’t want to look at or deal with that brings on the obsession. And then with the obsession comes a pushing down or repression of the unwanted feelings. So the obsession does seem to be serving a purpose, albeit not the most healthy one.
My latest obsession is searching for a new road bike on craigslist. Well, not new, just new for me. You know what I mean.. For the last several days I’ve been scouring craigslist obsessively trying to find the perfect bike. The truth is, I can’t even afford a bike right now. So why am I spending endless hours searching, and emailing about them, if it’s not even within my reach. Because I need the obsession.
When Little Guy is asleep, I get a break and that’s when I can eat my lunch, etc. I usually try to get a few things done, like dishes or his laundry, but overall just try to relax. Which is something that isn’t easy for me. Today however, I spent the entire two hours obsessively searching craigslist for a road bike. It was only when the mom suggested we wake up Little Guy that I even realized two hours has passed. It was also then when I realized how dissociated I was.
Quite honestly I don’t know how to break free from these obsessions. Once I get locked into an obsession, it feels practically impossible for me to break free. If I don’t get back to my obsession as soon as I have a second of free time, the feelings of panic start to overtake me. It’s like I need the obsession in the same way an addict needs their addiction. So how to break away from it?
I have in the past relied on cigarettes to get me through periods like this. I suppose obsessing over something on craigslist is better for me (at least physically anyway) than smoking. I just wish I knew how to just stop. And let whatever feelings come, come.
Who knows, I may end up with a stylish road bike when all is said and done!