• Lindsay Stetzer / 0 comments

Lindsay vs. OCD vs. Bird vs. TJ Maxx

What could be so complicated about a trip to TJ Maxx? Apparently, a lot. 

I was on my way home from work and decided I would stop into TJ Maxx to see if they had any new finds. I find it relaxing just browsing through the store seeing what treasures I can find.

As I'm walking toward TJ Maxx I realize that I am carrying my coffee cup that has a little liquid from the melted ice cubes at the bottom of it. ALL I wanted to do was dump it out and stick it in my backpack for an optimal, hands-free shopping experience. Brilliant. Simple. Right?

"Not today," says Danny Devito (for those of you that are new here—welcome—Danny Devito is what I call the OCD), "if you dump the ice cubes on the floor, whatever germs are on the floor will spray back onto you."

Not long after I say to myself, "that makes absolutely no sense," my body—on autopilot—abandons that plan.

Okay fine, I'll just dump it into the garbage. "WAIT. The garbage has even MORE germs than the floor. Probably even diseases!" 

Gahhhhh. So, ready for my brilliant solution? (That was sarcasm, btw.) I opened the lid at the top and casually shake out the remaining liquid and then put the cup into a plastic bag that I had in my backpack along with the seven other food containers I had been collecting at the office.

Lindsay: 0 / OCD: 1

So, as I go to stick the coffee cup in the ziplock and arrive at the door to the store, I notice in front of me this tiny little bird who was waiting to be let into TJ Maxx. The bird starts aggressively knocking on the glass door.

At the same time, I was hoping to wait until someone opened the door so I wouldn't need to touch the door handle, because you know as soon as your hand touches the door handle, its game over. You'd have to somehow—without touching ANYTHING—slink your hand into your bag to grab the Purell to sanitize the heck out of your hands. To be honest, I was just not in the mood, so instead, I patiently waited with the bird.

Lindsay: 0 / Bird: 0 / OCD: 2 

I wanted to take a video of this bird because it was so cute and funny waiting patiently for the door to open, but I didn't because I was STILL trying to reconfigure my bag with this GODDAMN COFFEE CUP and a GAJILLION containers.

What happened in the next moment was just... let's call it, ironic.

All of a sudden I felt something over my head, like someone was holding something there. I was trying to get whoever/whatever it was off, but it wasn't letting up. After a few moments of this, I looked up.

The cute little bird decided it didn't want to wait any longer and instead, hitched a ride right on my head. Yup. This BIRD flew up from the street and LANDED ON MY HEAD.

Lindsay: 0 / Bird: 1 / OCD: 2 

I finally got it off my head just as passersby started to laugh at me.

My therapist would agree that this was some damn good exposure therapy. Now all I needed to do was sit with the discomfort and delay, delay, delay.

So, I decided I was going to head into TJ Maxx. 

Lindsay: 1 / Bird: 1 / OCD: 2 

BUT, I was not going to touch my head because, of course, that would mean getting some disease from the bird and contaminating any treasure I would find on this long-awaited spree. I made it all the way through the shoes, the bags, and the jewelry.

(Deduct half a point for avoiding my head).

Lindsay: .5 / Bird: 1 / OCD: 2.5 

As I started to head over to the clothing area, I called it quits and decided i needed to go home immediately and jump in the shower. 

Anyone with Contamination OCD would know the cleaning doesn't stop there. I had to shampoo excessively and sanitize every piece of clothing I was wearing. Because once you give in, it just gets progressively more intense. 

Although I didn't completely beat the OCD on this one, I think for the circumstances I was given, I dealt with it pretty damn well. And honestly, that's what I get for waiting for someone else to open the door.

All it took was a bird landing on my head to remind me of that. 


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