Treating anxiety and OCD can be very challenging but miracles do happen! Do you ever sit across from a new client who has been battling anxiety for so long; someone who is exhausted from hours spent ruminating and compulsing; someone who has challenged their relationships due to never-ending reassurance seeking; someone who is looking to you for help to relieve their suffering. You become aware that the two of you, and possibly their family and friends, are about to go on a journey that will take them from being paralyzed with fear to living their lives fully.
I think of a young man I am treating with autism and OCD, who, despite the limits his symptoms place upon him, continues to make progress with the help of his mother, his teacher, his behavior specialist consultant, and his own perseverance. He hates exposures but he does them anyway to get his life back. Miracles do happen.
I think of a training I gave in New Orleans, where I met a father of a teenager waiting in line for the restroom. We both shared why we were there, he to play music and me to train more therapists on how to treat anxiety and OCD. He shared that his son has horrible intrusive thoughts that concerned him greatly but wasn’t aware there was treatment for it. I offered to find him a therapist who is trained to treat OCD so his son could get the help he desperately needed. For the first time, this family has hope. Miracles do happen.
I think of a mother who has dark circles under her eyes, exhausted due to her 8 y.o. daughter having severe separation anxiety. Her daughter was afraid to leave her mother’s site at all times of the day, screaming until someone responded to make her feel better. This girl is now fully involved in school, dance, and friendships. She created a story for other children on how to beat their worries. Here is part of her wisdom she shared: “The more you stay close to your Mom, the bigger the worry gets. The more you walk away from your Mom to do what other kids are doing, the better you will feel.” Miracles do happen.
I trust that you are having similar stories of recovery that continue to feed you as you take on the challenge of anxiety and OCD with your clients.