January 15, 2012

Update on Canadian OCD Network and a few other things.....

I haven’t written in a bit so I wanted to write a quick update on a few things. 

OCD Progress!
Wow – I’m very irritable these days, but I know that I am about to get my period so that’s why.  I’ve been doing great with my ERP and practicing mindfulness all week.  I’ve definitely had OCD thoughts, but I’ve managed to “intercept” at the right time before my mental compulsions start.  The last two days have been the worst – I’m sure because of the intense PMS.  I’m finding the mindfulness really does take practice and, as I mentioned in my previous post – I seem to need constant reminding about how to practice it, so I am trying to get my hand on every book written about mindfulness and anxiety or even depression.  Right now I’m reading “The Mindful way through Depression” – which in my opinion is only mediocre.  Hopefully my next post will be about “The Mindful way through Anxiety”. 

We’re making great progress with the Canadian OCD Network.  Dr. Stewart and I had a phone meeting last week and the result was a big plan for a number of things to accomplish.  I am super excited that we are partnering with AnxietyBC and the IOCDF to bring a BTTI (Behavioural Therapy Training Institute) to Vancouver in March.  The BTTI is a training program for psychologists and other healthcare professionals who would like to learn more about treating OCD, which in my opinion is desperately needed.  You can find more information about the BTTI on the
IOCDF website.  We are also working on getting our website up and running as soon as possible.  I’m working with another psychologist to write the copy for the website, and hopefully we will be “live” in March or April.  Support groups is another area that we are focusing on; gathering information about any current support groups that exist in Canada, and finding a way to encourage others to start one.  My goal is to have at least one OCD support group in every major city in Canada by the end of 2012.  If anyone would like more information about the COCDN, or would like to be put on our mailing list, please email us. 

I still have not heard from my Dad, which isn’t surprising.  I am still really enjoying the “distance” and time to focus only on myself, grieving my mother, and just getting my life back on track.  I actually feel GREAT – being away from all the drama, and also just having the emotional energy to deal with some other parts of my life that needed attention.  I have been going on two hour long hikes with a friend of mine, a couple of days per week, which feels wonderful!  Just getting out in the fresh air and getting some great exercise.  Plus, I’ve been back on a healthy eating diet, and it’s amazing what that has done for my state of mind.  I still have days/moments where I am overcome with grief and just missing my Mom, and I am sure I always will.  I was talking to my aunt on the phone yesterday and she mentioned how much she missed my Mom and their talks about spirituality, diet etc.  My Mom was a great “analyzer” (where do you think I got it from???), and could philosophize about anything.  It would drive me crazy at times, because it certainly didn’t help my OCD, but that trait also made her a very good friend – to me and to other people. 

That’s all for now – hopefully I will have more time to write this week. 


  1. So glad you are feeling good. Practicing mindfulness is really hard for me too.

    Wow, I am so impressed with the work you're doing with the network to help others. I am sure many people will be reached through such an effort.

  2. I really admire the work that you are putting into the Canadian OCD Network. I had no idea you were doing that. That has the power to change lives. What a blessing you are to others! It's so easy to talk about helping, but quite another thing to actually do it. I'm glad you have happy memories of your mom and that you considered her a friend. I hope that maybe it brings you at least a little comfort in your grief.

  3. I'm so glad that things are going a bit better for you. I'd love to have info on how to start an ocd group.

    A workbook called 'the mindfulness & Acceptance Workbook for Anxiety. y John Forsyth & Georg Eifert. It's at chapters.ca if your library or local bookstore doesn't have it. I just realized that i never finished the last couple of chapters. I thot it was really good and has interesting way of looking at things.

    My counseller is also interested in mindfulness and she loaned me a book a few years back. it was really good but i've forgotten the title. I will hopefully get that from her tomorrow when i see her.

  4. Your post left me feeling good...it sounds like you have so many positive things going on in your life now. I think the goals and work you are doing with the COCDN are impressive and amazing. I'm looking forward to following its growth!
    I am also glad you are able to grieve for your mom, on your own terms, without the family drama. I think that is so important. Sounds like she was a special person who touched many lives.

    Having trouble commenting with wordpress again.........

  5. I've been missing for awhile, and just wanted to say I was so sorry to hear about your struggles with losing your mom and dealing with your dad. I saw you read Present Perfect, which I am also reading right now, and I came to a full stop at the line about my well-being as just as valuable as anyone else's. It's ok to take care of yourself, and I am proud of you for doing that! I also think it's wonderful the progress you've made with the Canadian OCD Network and bringing BTTI to your area. That is awesome!!

  6. Thanks everyone for your supportive comments.
    Karin - I've heard of that book but can't remember if I've read it in the past. Either way - it's time to look it up again and re-read it if necessary. Thanks for the suggestion!
    Expwoman - Yes that comment about our well-being...if I remember it's towards the front of the book. Really resonated with me too. I think that book is one that really sticks out in my mind as being one of the most helpful for me. Welcome back!