On ocd

20/02/2018: "About John Green's newest book: Turtles all the way Down, what it means to me, what I think it meant to him, and what that what I think it meant to him means to me."

Okay. There is an issue with John Green’s books, if you are somewhere between generations Y and Z and moreso if you happen to be a nerd. They suck you in and don’t let go until you are done reading them.

And it is not just the way he presents the reality of his fiction to us, which happens to be so close to the way we think about it. It is also the geninuity and depth of the introspective monologues (or dialogues, in this case) his main characters go through.

His empathy is seemingly endless. He was able to portray the feelings of a girl dealing with her own cancer, among other, more typical teenager issues. In Looking for Alaska, he emulated thinking processes of a boarding school guy going through a lot of trouble, inducing enormous way of nostalgia and understanding in myself. Paper towns pictured that of a guy standing next to an amazing individuality of a girl he has known for most of his life, yet had far more to learn not only of her but of himself as well. And I bet his other books, which I still have to read, will give me a ticket to yet another minds of a young people so similar, yet so fundamentally different from mine.

I bet on it because Turtles did exactly that as well. I read about a sixteen year old girl suffering from obsessive compulsive disorder, likely set off by her father’s dying a long time before the book started. I have seen her world through her eyes, seen all the ways in which mine was identical to hers and felt the feelings she had. In fact, over the last 3 days, I was her. In my mind, that is.

It has become fairly common to say that one has OCD when obsessed with patterns and alignment of things around them to the point that they can’t stand looking at a closet with hangers facing different directions or wear different socks. And I know you know that it’s not what it is. I actually feel like even though I knew the definition of OCD from DSM-V, understood all of its implications, remember some of its treatment methods, and have read a couple of case studies on it, I never really knew what it was like. How it was, living in there and having to deal with the demon while still trying to live one’s life to its full potential.

Thanks to Aza, I have now sort of been there as well. And yes, it may or may not be beneficial to me in terms of my current situation and dealing with my own diagnosis. Yet I find the experience, the feelings, and the sense of her consciousness to reveal far more of the condition and its specific case. Especially the way she deals with it.

John, I’ll see you later today. Your vlog, at least.