“Time equals progression— progression equals death.” The equation is logical. But few of us think of each moment and each physical movement as comprising a path to our certain end. Surely such torture would drive us mad. But for Ed Zine, who suffers from a debilitating form of OCD, this statement is a mantra that holds him, the prisoner—figuratively and literally.
Ed’s OCD tells him, illogically, that if going forward in time moves him closer to death, reversing the action will carry him away from it, and if he can hold back the progression of time he will not age. If he doesn’t age, the people he loves will never die. This obsession, triggered by the horrific experience of having secretly witnessed his mother’s death at the age of eleven, keeps him trapped in a nightmare of perpetual rewinding rituals. Walking from his bed to the bathroom takes seven to ten hours and 16,384 precise, but necessary, movements forward and backward, with each step and turn to have potentially dire, even fatal, consequences—or so his OCD convinces him.
It would be a full year from their first meeting before Ed would come to fully trust world-renowned OCD specialist, Harvard professor, and decorated Vietnam War hero Michael Jenike enough to allow him to enter the dark prison created by his isolating obsession. The bond of honor that intertwines their lives enables Ed to use his amazing mind to break down OCD and heal himself as a way to reward Dr. Jenike for his compassion.
Life in Rewind is a compelling true story of dedication, determination, and triumph over seeming hopelessness. This book is a must-read for anyone wanting to know more about OCD, or for anyone looking for inspiration.
Terry Weible Murphy is a twenty-five-year broadcast veteran who has served on the board of directors for the Obsessive Compulsive Foundation. She is the mother of a son with obsessive-compulsive disorder.
Michael A. Jenike, M.D., a world-renowned OCD expert, is a psychiatry professor at Harvard Medical School and the founder and medical director of the
Massachusetts General Hospital Obsessive Compulsive Disorder Institute at McLean Hospital.
Edward E. Zine is now a triumphant survivor working in Internet marketing at Diamond Cadillac and living with his wife and two daughters on Cape Cod after suffering one of the worst cases of OCD that Dr. Jenike had ever seen.