Ella and the Non Verbal Child

Friends of mine typically know two things about me: I have a three legged dog, and my typical, daily extreme dislike of people.
Today was different, since it was raining Ella and I didn’t do our normal routine of going to the dog park. Instead, I spent over an hour in That Pet Place. The look of fear I get from some people due to the fact that Ella is a German Sheperd kills me. She is the sweetest baby ever, but yet people still avoid the two of us, as if somehow Ella is going to viciously go after them and their small children.


I met a mom and her two kids, one of her daughters has nonverbal autism, seizures, and cerebral palsy. Seeing that Ella had three legs, the mom made a statement of her daughter and Ella both having disabilities.


The daughter, Bri, quickly fell in love with Ella. She copied Ella by panting with her tongue out, squealed, held Ella’s tail, pet her ears, and shook with excitement when Ella soaked her face with kisses.

Was I scared that Bri would reach for Ella and was going to fall out of her wheelchair onto the floor?

No….. I was terrified.

Image may contain: one or more people and dog

I knew my dog better than anybody in that store, and knew nothing would happen. I could feel my anxiety rising, I hated being out, in stores, around people and my very vocal dog for any amount of time. I lived for the fact that I could run in and out of stores by the time most parents got their kids out of their car seat.


This family and I walked around the store for about an hour, letting the other daughter walk Ella, while we trailed behind. Listening to the excited squeals coming from both Ella and Bri. This was an amazing rainy Saturday, that warmed my heart as I watched this little girl shake, squeal, laugh and reach for Ella out of pure joy.

This was the Saturday that absolutely melted my heart.

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I Have A Special Secret

You, yeah you reading this.

I hope you are sitting down for what I am about to tell you, but not driving, that’s an entirely different sitting. I mean, I guess you could stand, but be careful walking and reading. What if you bump into someone and that person is having a bad day and picks a fight, and you are all, “Yo, I’m really sorry! I was reading this girl’s blog and bumped into you.” Then that person asks what blog (which could really work to my advantage).

Anyway, you, you reading this. Whether you are standing, sitting (not driving), kneeling, laying down, squatting or jogging, I have some news for you.

You are not special.

There, I said it.

Much like that person you bumped into while reading this, you may be ready to pick a fight.

The truth of the matter is, you are not special. Whether the person who told you this was a mom, dad, brother, sister, grandparent, (pssssttt, that isn’t true).

You aren’t the only one who:

                                Dyed their hair a crazy color

Got a tattoo in a weird place

Speaks a foreign language

Likes food others find repulsive

Now, I know we all want to think that we, as an individual, are special. Not sounding haughty of ourselves, but just “individual enough” to stick out. This could actually serve as a barrier between us and others, us and building relationships, us and our worthiness.

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If we believe we are special, then we are also different and unique; meaning we may interpret that as not being relatable. I could be out in left field somewhere, but by also having that mentality, it can also be thought of that you are the exception to the rule or are somehow undeserving.

You aren’t the only one who:

                                Has divorced parent

Are divorced

Struggles with a mental illness

Struggles with self-harm

Had an abusive childhood

Deals with alcoholism/drugs/addiction

But by believing you are somehow special or unique, you separate yourself from others, believing you are somehow different than everyone around you.

This mentality is a huge factor, I believe, in being open and vulnerable.  If we are unable to discuss our struggles and shortcomings, it makes it that much more taboo when someone finally does open up. We are able to see that “I’m not the only one struggling with _________.” Yet, if we all walk around stoic, others may believe they are the only ones and find it more difficult, maybe even impossible, to open up if they feel like the people around them can’t relate.

I found this to be true during the support group I attend. If we keep the conversation shallow, I leave feeling unfulfilled and like it was a waste. Yet, in front of four new people I talked openly about my urge to self-harm and purge. Realizing that more people can relate than they initially acted. One lady in particular, was quite, until I mentioned my struggle; she opened up about how she copes and what works for her. It was great to see strangers who were able to come together over one very taboo struggle and talk openly, because I know, I am not the only one.

 

Trust the Process!

XOXOXOXO

My Faith mixed with the Food and Fear

It’s a question I have been asked several times, but I’ve never actually stopped to dig deeply and dissect the answer.

The question may differ slightly,

“How did I get into Christianity?”

“Why did I choose to stay involved?”

“Have you always been a Christian?”

but the answer inevitably brings me back to a certain time in my life.

I can vividly remember being somewhere around 6 years old. I remember our apartment, the glass table, the beanie babies piled high, the kitchen bar, the stained bathroom floor from when I spilled red nail polish. I never remember church. I remember the park, my neighbor upstairs, my cat, the statue of the panther in the living room. I never remember praying.

Around 7 years old I was dragged along with mom who moved to North Carolina with some strange man who would later become my stepfather. I remember my bus stop, my dog, my teacher. Still no church or praying.

In 2000 my brother was born. At some point, unsure of exactly when that was, it was decided among my parental units that my brother, in order to keep him from being damned to hell for reasons I was unsure of at the time, was going to be baptized/saved/christened. I guess by default, I was volun-told that I was to participate in such religious ritual as well. I remember the smell of vegetable oil on my forehead and how I was sickened that I had some greasy oily stuff smeared on my face by a stranger. Up until that point that was the most religious experience of my life.

In 2004 my sister came into the picture. Somewhere between moving and the birth of my sister we began to make an appearance to a church. We stood up, knelt, sat, knelt, it felt like a bad version of Simon says. I watched as my parents introduced me to people that could be my grandparents. We showed up, smiled, and left. One Sunday morning I was getting ready for the perfunctory routine, I had decided to put on mascara and was instantly ridiculed by my step dad.

This is also when their religion seemed to be found more frequently at the bottom of a bottle than in a church pew.

Being under 13, I remember one night, after they had been praising the bottle again. A fight broke out. I gestured to my brother to go to our room and that I’d be right there. I grabbed my sister from her high chair and was going to take her with me to our room. Immediately, I was spun around by a slurred patron saint of the bottle. “You don’t EVER take my child away from me!” With that, my sister was ripped from my arms.

Another move, and another sibling later, I was in middle school. My parent’s religious worshiping of the bottle increased as did my self-hatred. I wasn’t allowed to speak up, have an opinion that was different from my mom’s, or stick up for myself. I turned all the feelings inward. Turning to self-harming, purging, anything. I was already hurting with all of the screaming and fights, which I was convinced was my fault anyways, so it made sense to punish myself, and simultaneously release some of the built up angst. I was blamed for why my parent’s argued. This logic made sense in my world since I had introduced the two of them by accident. I wasn’t sure if they hated me because of it, and if only I was thinner, better behaved, made better grades, maybe they wouldn’t hate me and their marriage would get strengthen.

Eating less, cutting more, purging when I could.

I had the opportunity to go to Ireland on a student program. I was threatened by one of the leaders that if I didn’t start eating I would be sent home.

A family friend invited us to church with them. We reluctantly began to go. I had learned from my past experience with church that it was time to put on my nice clothes, put on a smile and pretend everything was amazingly awesome in my picture perfect world.

Behind closed doors my family threw stuff, screamed, hated each other. My mother would wake me up at all hours to clean my room, clean the kitchen, whatever. Digging her nails into my arm and screaming, as my brother cried from behind her, “Don’t hit her mom!” My parent’s would scream and fight until the church door. With that, the name calling was suddenly, “Oh sweetie, I love you.”, “I love you too honey.” With controlling displays of affection to show to the church how great our family actually was.

I began to question what I was told about God, and even the very existence of God.

“God doesn’t love me, if he did why would he allow this?” I would question.

My own mother would push me against walls, dig her nails into me, and throw stuff at me. The next morning she would say “I love you, have a great day at school.”

I doubted the very word of “love” and it took years for me to be able to tell her I loved her back.

I continued to put on a happy face when we went to church, and was criticized by my parent’s when I wanted to go to church on Wednesdays for youth group, being asked, “Don’t you have anything else you could do besides go to church?”

I went into High School, from moving so much I knew almost everyone in my class. I told myself I would never drink or smoke weed, I didn’t want to be anything like my parents. I began to drink, and would smoke during the off season of sports.

I don’t remember a lot during this time. I went to school, did sports, was on student government, had a job, didn’t eat. Did anything I could to not go home.

Being told that what happens in this house, stays in this house.

My math teacher is the reason I actually became involved and plugged in. During Senior year I moved in with my pastor and his wife. Being told once again that I am the reason their marriage is so rocky, so if I moved out for a while…..

I changed my number, paid my own bills, went to church. Pastor and his wife actually gave me curfew, and I was thrilled someone actually cared about me and where I was. I was diving deep into Christianity, my devotional, and church in a way I hadn’t. We talked, like a family, prayed, like a family, went on trips. There was no yelling, and I realized what I had lived in wasn’t normal.

My parents left the church, I was eventually forced to move back home, and continued to stay at that church for as long as I could, refusing to ever go to church with my parents again.

My math teacher would pray for me and with me. I had convinced myself that if I don’t talk about what’s going on at home, then it’s like it doesn’t happen. After the cops were called, I began to open up to my teacher who invited me to her house, prayed with me, shared books and articles with me, and invited me to Fellowship of Christian Athletes. She spoke of her mistakes, I told her about mine, but it was never from a criticizing or demeaning place, but one of hope and love.

After graduation, I moved out, again. Found a church which I attended regularly, as well as a girls college bible study that my teacher led up. It was a safe environment. Learning about mistakes, love, forgiveness for not only ourselves, but others. There was something peaceful about the entire thing, a sense of belonging and security. How faithful God is and all He has in store for us and our future.

During all of this, my self-harming would come and go, and I was consistently struggling with my Eating Disorder. I was told by several people, that someone must have been looking out for me.

Deep in my eating disorder I would eat under 100 calories a day, and was running and lifting. I was taking diet pills, laxatives, and going to the gym. I have sustained injuries because of it, but when I look back, it is crazy to me that nothing severe happened. There is no reason that I shouldn’t have collapsed during a run, or seriously damaged my body.

I can only think that God has something in store for me, for keeping me around.

I continue in my faith for many reasons. It is one step further away from becoming my parents, every person I admire and look to are strong in their faith, and just the pure honesty that is spoken and how I feel after digging into my devotional.

Trust the Process!!!

Self-Empathy & Compassion

Self-empathy, to me, I feel like this is a brand new topic. One read about in fictional tales, along with princesses with flowing locks of hair and birds that make my bed for me.

In Brene Brown’s book, I Thought It Was Just Me (But It Isn’t), she goes on to explain the difference between empathy and sympathy. I’m very guilty of using these words interchangeably for years, but now having such a better understanding of the words. I want someone to empathize with me, but don’t want their sympathy. Brenė puts it,

“When they talked about their ability to overcome shame, they clearly pointed to empathy: sharing their feelings with someone who would understand and relate to what they were saying. Conversely, women used words like hate, despise, and can’t stand to describe their feelings about sympathy seeking- looking for sympathy or being asked for sympathy.”

Empathy, is looking for acceptance, and understanding that we are not alone in our experiences.

It has been argued you cannot give what you don’t have, this also including love and empathy, but I respectfully disagree. It is so much easier to give others empathy and the benefit of the doubt. I questioned daily why I was much more able to cut others slack, or be more understanding of others, why I was so hard on myself, and I believe this is a lack of self-compassion as well as empathy towards myself.

I fully believe that everyone has something in their life they are dealing with. Whether it be a sick family member, mental illness, recent death, financial issues, whatever it is, so I attempt to give everyone the benefit of the doubt. That is it though, right there. I don’t know everybody’s story, as much as I love hearing peoples’ stories and hearing how far they’ve come. What if I did though? Honestly, I might be more empathic and compassionate towards them, realizing what they are dealing with on a daily basis. Why is that any different than myself?

I know my story, I know what I have been through. I may not think it is “All that bad” but I know there are people out there who believe I am “brave” “strong” “courageous”. It is the shame of believing the lies I have been fed for years, and internally believing that I am not deserving or worthy. I am much more empathetic and compassionate to those I don’t know their story, than myself.

We’ve all got something

I am a firm believer in “everyone has something” and I admire when people are open and vulnerable about their story.

I met a man at the dog park the other day and he also got his degree in biology and works in umbilical cord cells and tissues for a large company.

We talked about his two dogs who were rescues, and how he is now a grandfather because his son and wife had their first child.

He went on to tell me how him and his wife spend their winter in Arizona, but come back to Pennsylvania to take care of his mom with dementia. Through his story he maintained a good attitude and even cracked a few jokes.

His mom had refused to have any “strangers” in their house, which included nurses, therapists anyone, and in turn, every time him and his wife hired somebody, they usually lasted a couple days and then she would fire them.

He told them that the next time  she fired them, to ignore her and come back the next day.

 

My coworker, who has a smile on his face and looks out for me and invites me to lunch with them, just told me the other day that his mom had been diagnosed with cancer in January and was too tired and drained to travel for the holiday weekend.

 

Another coworker deals with his rude wife, while also taking care of his sick mother. He is probably mid fifties, and will take her to her “day camp”. My heart sinks for him when his phone continuously rings through out the day. I feel like he can’t get a breath or catch a break.

 

My high school teacher, who helped bring me closer and stronger in my faith, is unable to get pregnant, and her father shot her mom then turned the gun on himself. Even through all of this her faith is unwavering and I look up to her so much.

 

My best friend struggles with depression, and I love her more than anything.

It may be completely weird, but I love hearing about others’ stories, where they came from, and how they are managing.

 

1 Corinthians 10:12

1 Corinthians 10:12

“So, if you think you are standing firm, be careful that you don’t fall!”

Over the course of being in recovery, I have had the same goals.

1)      Be “normal”

2)      Find a healthy balance between working out and eating

3)      Be able to help and share with others

Some of you may read these, especially number one and think, “Come on, what even is ‘normal’, that is such a vague idea.” Others of you, I know because I have talked with others, are sitting there thinking, “Holy shit! Yes! She gets it!”  I’m not saying I want a job, a husband, a dog, a house with a picket fence, 2.5 kids. I already have two of those… I’ll let you guess 😉

What I am saying is I want to eat like a normal person, eat when I’m hungry, eat when I’m not hungry, put cheese on food, not count calories like a fiend. Eat cold pizza for breakfast, have hot chocolate, you know, what NORMAL people would do, and not think twice about.

While I am so thankful that I am not where I was, I know I have work to be where I want to be. (Even though you guys can’t see it, I’m finishing up a tofu taco salad- delish!) I still struggle with the morbid sense of wanting to be sick, and wanting to be back in treatment. At the same time, lately I have been able to take a step back and realize, “ok, I’ve been there before. Nothing will be different, so why do I want to go back?”

At this point in my life, I am 23 years old. Living in Pennsylvania, by myself, moving from NC to PA after graduation to pursue my career in Biochemistry. I feel fortunate to have a career with benefits, PTO, and in a field where I have my degree. So why would I want to throw that all away to go back to being weighed everyday?

I have made friends going to the support group, and through that I have had lunch, and gotten coffee, with some of the girls. It is eye opening that at times, I am the oldest one in the group, and I am not ok with this. I do not want to be tied down by this thing. Recently, I have reached out, getting to know some of the girls, and I want to be a support for them to reach out to.

I have been reminded of this verse lately, “So if you think you are standing firm, be careful that you don’t fall.” This is huge to me. I don’t want to reach out to help, if it may completely undo the progress I have built. I want to help and pull others up without worrying about being triggered or being dragged down. I pray this a lot, especially when I hang out with the girls, hoping for the best, for the right words to say and to remember to be careful.

 

Trust the Process!

xoxoxo

Eating Disorders Impact Loved Ones, Not Just the Individual

I’ve been told, more times than I can count, that I need to “get mad at ED.”

The crazy thing is, I just can’t get mad at his impact on my life. It helped me cope, for years! Gave me something to cling to.

Would I go back in time and change it all? No, I’ve learned a lot.

Would I voluntarily go through it all again? Not Likely At All.

I am annoyed though. For the hell and havoc it put the people close to me through.

Unable to go out to eat with my best friend. Her standing outside the bathroom door while I puke on the cruise. Her concern for me and watching me day in and day out run and abuse her best friend. Watching me pick at the salad during our family dinners, or the look on her face when I make eye contact after I come out of the bathroom, ashamed of what I had just done. On our beach trips, when I would still get up and force myself to run, or would leave the hotel room at ten at night to go to the gym in an attempt to burn off what I had consumed.

To my brother, who no longer went on sushi dates with his sister because I was no longer able to keep it down. Fear of rice, cream cheese and by this point, foods in general. I never meant for this to get to you. You would ask me when we would go out, I would make up any excuse in the book. Please know, I was never avoiding you, I was avoiding food.

My dear sister, I hope you learn from my mistakes. Our 5k races were the highlight of our weekends. Do not run and work out because you “have to”, I want you to love and enjoy it. I hope and pray I never pushed you too hard or too far.

Mom, we had our ups and downs, many downs. You didn’t want me to go to treatment, I know this, you made it clear. ED became more important than you, or even life. I skipped Thanksgiving this year, and it meant a lot that you were understanding of it. Knowing I was in a good place, but didn’t want to put myself in that situation.

YOU, on the other hand, I’m not sure if I can ever forgive you. As long as I can remember you were my life, I was your princess. Grandma, you supported me when, at the age of 5, I wanted to be a vet. You believed in me at 13 when I wanted to become a lawyer. Thrilled, when I decided at 19 to pursue dentistry.

Then, practically disowned me at the age of 21, when I went into treatment. That was when I needed your love and support the most. We still haven’t talked and I’m not sure if our relationship will ever be the same. I think you hated ED more than I ever could. You were angry with my eating disorder and took it out on me.

To my professors, I never meant to worry you. Commenting on how I’m getting smaller, passing me on campus while I’m running, even though you just left the class of yours that I skipped- again. Some of you went so far to physically drive me to a restaurant for lunch just so you could watch me eat and help. I picked at the veggies. There was the time you offered me your lunch, “as long as you’ll actually eat it.” I declined your offer. Your support to keep me on track while doing school while in treatment. The shock some of you had when you realized I hadn’t dropped my classes, and was still scheduled to graduate on time. Yet, you guys believed in me and sing my praises to current students.

T, the times I was doing well, and the times that kicked my ass, you were there. You are so supportive, encouraging, and my biggest advocate. Sometimes it’s all I can do to not call you just crying, so unsure of myself and decisions. I fear you will think I’m too wishy-washy for recovery. ED has dug his claws into our relationship too many times. I visualize you doing the dance and cheers when things are good, and a disappointed lowering shake of the head when it’s bad. It is scary to question you own (well, seemingly own) thoughts and doubt your own capabilities.

You’ve seen the scars, the tears, the successes. We’ve gone on walks, gone to breakfast, lunch, given me reading material. ED still wants to fuck with you and I’m sorry.

There comes a time where you have to want recovery for yourself and your life- I’m there. I want a happy, fulfilling life, without an eating disorder. I’m scared to be given up on, lose faith in me. One day you will wake up and no longer care. ED will pipe up and blame my weight for the reason you left.

I can’t even write down the words, “I’m sorry” doesn’t cover it, and guilt doesn’t fully describe it.

When I take a step back, it hurts me to see how much ED has impacted you all.

That is what bothers me the most.

I was unable to hide it and protect you all from the ugly wrath of ED.

Left only to my imagination of the exhausting feelings you are left with after an encounter with my eating disorder and I. Being annoyed and hurt by my blatant snarky sass. Wanting to help while simultaneously wanting to throw your hands in the air in defeat. The uncertain feeling of helplessness. Wanting to help, to make it better, wishing it to go away for me. Yet, unable to do so. Knowing that through it all, it is left to me and my decision.

When your support and influence impact my next decision, I hope you feel a glimmer of hope, knowing I’m still under there.

 

Beginning of the Year. 2015 vs 2016

1/7/2015

Monday was weigh in, new admits, and a lot of nothing.

Tuesday, Vanessa woke M and I up early for another weigh in. We were both freaking the hell out.

After Treatment team had their meeting M found out she was going home.

They had searched our rooms and M got caught water loading. I was pretty upset about it and miss her.

It is so weird to be the person here the longest. I miss B too, but guess I need to focus on me and getting better.

During T’s group yesterday I got slightly defensive and sassy. Another resident was arguing with T and talking shit about this place. T and everyone here have already done so much for me, to hear someone brand new come in and talk shit really pissed me off.

I told her we were going grocery shopping, everyone has to go, to calm down, etc. T thanked me for piping up.

So, anyway, today. We had yoga and I got super antsy. Yoga Kathy caught me trying to work out. I so badly want to run

We tried to make a grocery list, but it was a chaotic clusterfuck and I got stressed.

Got to carry the Sam’s stuff in through!

Was also put on anti-anxiety, just makes me feel tired.

Sometimes I wonder and get discouraged. Am I even making progress?

1/8/2015

I woke up this morning, I had been dreaming about my kids. I got really melancholy, miss them so much, their hugs, their love, their smiles.

I’m slightly discouraged that people are “passing” me in recovery. I know it isn’t a race, but people that came after me are leaving before me.

The guilt of water loading is still killing me. I had a realization this morning, I miss M, but I’m glad she is gone. I think I miss the familiar faces and the thought of her. She breagged about how many cups of water she had before weigh in, what she hid or smuggled in. I got defensive for her, when she was hiding cups of vomit in her room.

I think I realized I am only cheating or hurting myself and my recovery.

1/9/2015

Today is Saturday, I’m going on pass.

Yesterday, we had a group with T about feelings, emotions, etc. I tried so freaking hard to not cry. It was the hardest group yet, my mind went to New Years, how much I fucked up, all the memories, my home life and the voice of ED.

I looked at T as she lovingly drilled me with uncomfortable questions. Trying so hard not to cry.

I went to my room and just began to bawl.

T came in and saw. We talked for a bit about her group and how it helped, but was so hard.

Everyone left, I went outside and played with Chloe. It was so great to be outside laughing and playing with the dog.

 

2016

This week has probably been one of the hardest.

I went to back to residential, but only to visit and say my goodbyes. I walked in the familiar door, where a bunch of unfamiliar faces greeted me in confusion and curiosity.

Standing right in the doorway, staring through the hall of the house, T came out into the hall.

Literally everything else faded.

I headed down the hall.

Straight into her arms.

T expressed a lot of concern for me moving, and desperately wanted me to take care of myself and eat.

I talked to K, and she was excited for me. I gave her a hard time, and a couple hugs as well.

It is so crazy to me that someone I started off wanting nothing to do with, let alone hugs from, has become my biggest supporter and practically a mom to me. I love her so much, and don’t think I can ever fully express my gratitude for everything she has done.

I have moved from NC to PA.

I knew the transition would be the hardest, but I wasn’t anticipating it to be this rough.

After packing everything up, and an excruciatingly long drive, I am now sitting in my apartment.

It is odd, and still nerve-wracking. I do feel some peace about the situation though.

I am having a very difficult time eating though.

I strongly believe that I am just worried, stressed and nervous, and am restricting to compensate.

It isn’t smart, but it is what I know.

The dog and I go on runs frequently, and I am restricting pretty badly.

I am also fairly certain that my veganism is another way to hide my orthorexic tendencies. It isn’t only about the animals, or just the environment, it also has a lot to do with the chemicals. I have a huge fear of the preservatives inside the food, what else is in the food, and gives me an excuse to avoid fear foods like lunch meat and cheese.

I start my job Monday in a biopharmaceutical lab.

I’m not where I was, but I’m not where I want to be.

Trust the Process!!

xoxox

I could do it, just pack up and leave.

1 year
                 365 days
                                 52 weeks
It is amazing how much can change. I vaguely remember this, mainly because there were many, many, oh so many, mornings that I woke up and it took everything in me not to pack up before breakfast. Many mornings I laid in bed and thought “That’s it, my mind is made up, I’m leaving today. I can’t handle it here.” At one point I was the youngest in the house, I questioned if I was too young to recover, if I was even sick. I made excuses after excuses of why I was fine.
                Even my treatment team today will tell you how I went into residential thinking I didn’t even have a problem. Makes recovery difficult when you don’t think you have anything to recover from.
12/18/2014
                I’m not sure what got into me, I feel awful. I want to cry but I can’t, I need to run but I can’t, I want to go home, but that really isn’t an option either. I don’t want to get fatter, I don’t want to “mindfully eat”.
                Everyone is more concerned than me. I want to call it quits, go home, go run, but quitting isn’t like me.
                                I want to nap.
                                                                What if recovery just isn’t for me?
Why is it so much easier to slowly kill myself and starve than to actually feed and take care of myself?
                How did I get to this point?
Eating once a week, running twice a day, totally fine, to eating six times a day and crying over a bagel and turkey.
                I could leave ya know. Pack up my stuff, ask for my keys, walk away and go home. Not be forced to have a starch, fat, protein, or an Ensure if I refuse. Not hear, “Walk.”, “No running.” And “Second table” anymore. Leave and not be the reason we need bathroom buddies anymore.
Feel like a free, real person again. Not have to sing while I pee, be able to go down an aisle without being watched or reprimanded for going to far.
                                I could do it, just pack up and leave.
                                                                                Then what?
                Return to all the people who believed in me, support me and called me “brave”, just to have to admit to them I am chicken shit and pansied out.
Continue stuck in this rut of spitting up stomach acid, running on empty, being weak and tired—
                                –until—
                                                                –until what?
I’m not sure what has gotten into me lately. I’m really blah and in a slump.
                                This is so freaking hard.
Earlier I was so bored I swept outside, front porch, back porch, even part of the yard.
                                                Yeah, I was sweeping rocks and leaves.
I guess, originally, I came to placate and shut everyone up. Now though, I’m at least partly able to see how bad this is. I don’t want to go home and continue this waiting game of being “sick enough”, but here it is so hard.
I try to end these past journal entries with a where I am now. Looking back, I had only been at Tapestry for about two weeks. I had no idea what was in store for me. I still had a very long ways to go. I wouldn’t be allowed to run for about a month still, I ended up having to tally how many times I was going up and down the stairs, etc.
                Today, I am trying to deliberately eat. There is a part of me that still thinks it is completely acceptable to skip meals, mainly because I get busy. So, I am trying to focus on deliberately eating and not making it optional.
                I will say this, it got more difficult before it got easier, but today it is easier. Eating is not an obnoxious chore that I avoid at all costs. There are even some foods I look forward to eating and even enjoy to eat! (Yes, I ordered two large boxes of gingerbread Clif bars… they are my favorite flavor!!)
Anyways, it gets easier. Do the next right thing!!
Trust the Process
xoxoxo

Crying Over a Bagel

I want to start this post off by saying that I ate quinoa with mushrooms, eggs, and a biscuit this morning. No crying over food, no Ensures. Looking back on this year is crazy, eye opening, and I am so thankful for my team and how far they have brought me through all of this. This time last year, there was no way I could look ahead and see my life how it is today. I feel very blessed and thankful to have so many people in my life who love me, a dog who doesn’t leave me, and a much healthier mindset.

I still struggle with urges, and body dissatisfaction, but realizing that purging and restricting won’t help with that, it will only make me grumpy and regretful.

12/17/2014

                “You’re gonna be here a while.” The sound of those words resembled a car screeching to a hault, nails on a chalk board of an unexpected shot of a gun. My heart skipped a beat as Susi said this.

                I hate this, I had another meltdown during lunch- fucking Ensure, stupid RC, stupid bagel. I made a salad and challenged myself with turkey lunch meat and part of a bagel. To cope with lunch I was coloring at the table, the RC told me to stop. I began to fill up with anger and anxiety because now I was so focused on this damn lunch. I asked the RC if I could go outside, collect myself and come back in a few minutes- she said no, I could breathe at the table. I got so mad and upset I began to just cry. Long story short, I ended up having an Ensure.

                We were gonna go grocery shopping, but I had an appointment with Susi. I told the RC after I had finished my Ensure about my appointment- she went and rescheduled my appointment until Friday. That royally pissed me off, I told her, “Why can’t I keep my appointment?!?! Especially with my meltdown at lunch today!!”

                So, I went to Susi’s office, bawling, and everyone else went shopping.

                Susi asked if lunch was hard and I told her about my meltdown, Ensure, coloring, my watch telling me to “MOVE!” We talked about how I just need to mechanically get throught the meals by any means necessary- including coloring. She asked about my watch, and told her it was a Garmin running watch, and just wasn’t helpful right now. I explained I tried to cope through lunch and don’t want to leave for “not following my meal plan.” Susi said I didn’t see what my actual size was, and I’d probably be in the hospital from heart issues soon, if I just left now.

                Watchless, exercise deprived, food focused, fat, depressed and angry.

                She also knew I’m really struggling with the urge to exercise and gave me something great to try for my hamstrings. We talked about how bad I want to run and being so conflicted and worried over Christmas. I told Susi if I go home I will run, and work out and not eat, and I didn’t need anything else to make me take steps backwards.

                After my appointment with Susi, I was in the kitchen coloring when T came in. I asked her if she had a few minutes so we could talk feelings. She said definitely and I followed her to her office. I was totally honest and told her that literally this entire place knows I’m struggling so bad with wanting to exercise- she nodded.

                I asked what else I could do to help with that. She threw out ideas of journaling, breaking sticks. I told her that it is so hard for me to not run in place or do abs. T asked me if I had been doing this, I admitted to it. Trying to sneak work outs in my room, but knowing it wasn’t hurting anyone but myself and my recovery.

                I explained I felt like a lost cause. T talked about “self-soothing” ideas, smell, touch, etc. She said I wasn’t a lost cause. We also talked about Christmas and she agreed I don’t want to start all over again because of a few days.

 

Don’t let a temporary setback, or feeling stuck where you are now, determine your future. Don’t live your life out of fear for what could happen. You may not be ready, but if not now, then when?

Day by day you may not see a change, but look back on months ago, a year ago.

Trust the Process!!!!

xoxoxo