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

More Than Just a Job

It is so crazy to look back and read my journal entries from last year. I was admitted into treatment on December 6th, 2014. I did not want to be there, I didn’t even want to acknowledge the fact that I had an eating disorder, or that I needed help.

It is also amazing to look back on all of the progress I have made. I am no longer crying over food, I have a love for peanut butter. Praise God, I am no longer involuntarily puking after I eat. The nutritionist and T have had such an amazing impact on my recovery and my life and can never thank them enough. It was the most terrifying and rewarding experience of my life.

 

12/13/2014

            Today has been rough. Struggled through breakfast and snack. Had DBT which was actually hard. For snack I had granola but didn’t even want to touch food so distracted myself with making a bracelet. Told Michelle I didn’t want to eat and nicely threatened me with an Ensure. I finally ate the rest of the damn granola.

            Had lunch, well, let me rephrase that… I had a mental breakdown during lunch. Today has just been a really difficult day. I wanted NOTHING for lunch, but decided to make a salad, sweet potato and cottage cheese. I sat down at the table and just began to cry after staring at my food. The RC asked me if I wanted to go outside, breathe, collect myself and come back.

            So, I went outside and cried. One of the outpatient girls saw me and came over to give me a pep talk. I told her, “No worries, just a mid lunch breakdown.” She told me, “It will get better, I know you’re so fucking sick of hearing that, but its true.” The RC came outside for a minute to check on me, then went back inside. I told her it was just an extra hard day and she gave awesome advice on it’s a step by step progress. Then she gave me a hug and went inside. A few seconds later my roommate came out and I began to just cry. I wasn’t hungry, didn’t want to go out tonight, no hunger cues, so don’t want to eat. The RC came out at about this time. I was crying, and just really didn’t want to eat. I told her that I think it finally hit me that I was really here, and really doing this.

            After some hugs, coaxing and talking, I went back inside, sat at the table and took a bite. The nutritionist did second table while everyone else watched me struggle.

Second table ended and everyone got up except the nutritionist and I. Slowly but surely I made it through lunch. Then, after doing my dishes, I was antsy and swept the kitchen. That was when the nurse came and got me, and said Dr. T wanted to see me.

            I went in and sat down, we talked about my vitamin D levels, and I told him about the involuntarily throwing up. He said that was not ok, and I explained the “swallow your vomit” motif and my logic of, “Eat what I’m comfortable with and get punished, or eat until I throw up.” He was not happy with that at all and said he would talk with the nutritionist about it.

            Oh God, I didn’t want to start anything, but I told him it was so much food…and the puking….

So, I went back to the kitchen, picked up the air vent and scrubbed it. As I squatted on the floor the clinical director, T, came in to fix her lunch and commented on me being a cleaner. Two residents came into the kitchen both bitching about how the nurse and Dr. T were taking forever. I looked up and told them, “They were talking to the nutritionist about me because I’m a pain in the ass.”

T looked down at me and inquired, “Talking about you? Why? What’s up?”, I replied with, “Nothing.” She squatted down nearly eye level with me. I told her I was really struggling today. She said, “You aren’t a pain in the ass. Your eating disorder might be a pain in the ass, but you aren’t.” I really, really, appreciated that.

            I sat down and began to cry. I told her I’m still throwing up. I had a meltdown during lunch, but she probably already heard about that, she shook her head, and had a seat on the kitchen floor facing me. I told her the story, me crying, going outside, etc. I told her it’s the fine line between eating quickly feeling full and sick or not wanting to eat at all. I feel anxious when I am the last one, but don’t want to hurl. I told her that I threw up again and was embarrassed and discouraged.

            She was understanding about this being my first week and tough as shit, she asked if anyone else knew, I said no. She expressed how she wanted me to share at process group about how I’m struggling. She said she was glad I was here and I told her about my very supportive roommate.

            I’m not sure I can express to T how much I appreciated my therapy session on the kitchen floor. I used to think this wasn’t bad, I wasn’t sick and I didn’t need to be here. Yet, I’m the one on the kitchen floor having a meltdown. It really meant a lot to me for her to take the time to talk with me and be supportive. T told me it’s a big jump going from not eating to eating so much.

I’m just so discouraged and embarrassed that I’m puking and don’t want to get caught or in trouble.

Guys, always trust the process. Sometimes we are way to close to realize what we need. It is so much more than a job to these amazing women. I am not where I want to be, but I praise God that I’m not where I was. Sure ED likes to knock, (pretty damn hard sometimes) and I may even periodically let him in when I think it may be helpful. But even these days are better than my laxative abusing, running obsessing, purging oriented life I was “living”.

Trust the process guys!!

Updated my “About Me”. Mental hospital, recovery, family disowned, biology major.

About.

Not sure how long it has been since I updated my “About” section… probably a long time ago.

So here is a more vulnerable, open “About” post. About my ED, recovering, mentally unstable not supportful family, purging.

Residential

Wow, guys. This post is going to be short. But since Thanksgiving, I’ve been put in residential treatment. Met some wonderful people, had to have my meal plan brought down.
I came to placate everyone and hush the doctors, my friends, etc. My oh shit moment was involuntarily throwing up daily, having to have my meal plan lowered, and realizing that I do need to be here. It has been a crazy few weeks.
I didn’t go home for Christmas because the clinical staff didn’t think it was a good idea. I’m still so conflicted, but overall I’m glad I’m here.
Weigh in is Monday and Thursday. Eating 6x a day, no exercise approval, too many ensures to count. Therapists, art, yoga, grocery shopping, having to check in my razor.
I’m not where I want to be, but I’m sure not where I was.

“We don’t want you cheating.”

After being fed “hospitalization” “heart rate” more doctors, etc. I was slightly concerned about my heart, or maybe just more concerned that I was being threatened with the hospital. I called my grandma who told me she blames my mom, which isn’t helpful at all. I txted mom the next morning just saying, “Grandma told me she blames you for my struggle with food. It has nothing to do with you, and I’m just not sure if you want to be involved in whats going on or not. I know you have a lot going on.”  She told me that she did want to know, so I sent her a couple texts about my heart, inpatient, and S had told me yesterday, “It is starting to boil down to two options, involuntarily hospitalized, or voluntarily go into treatment.”

I called the treatment place back, I called mom, grandma, even my step dad. I was shocked at the different responses. Everything from:

Grandma: “This is going to be great, I bet you are so excited.” “I get to see you for Christmas.”

Mom: “This isn’t a vacation for you, I am so sorry.”

Step dad: “Go have a fucking beer, smoke some dope and relax.”

It honestly reminded me of the book Purge, My mom, of course was trying to bring it back to her, how SHE should have caught it sooner, how she is so sorry. My step dad doesn’t wanna spend the money (hell, I don’t blame him) but said, “Well, try and see what they will have you doing so you can get out of there sooner.”

I know my grandma was trying to be supportive, but telling me to “get excited” is such a stretch. This was not how I anticipated my Senior year of college, and my Christmas break going. So, I called the place back, she was super nice, funny. Looks like December 7th, I am checking into treatment……

So, next step was getting the paper work done from my other doctor, not the one on campus, my GP, that I was cleared and stable to go. The nurse, who also knows me by name, squeezed me in for the next day, which I was very appreciative of. I fly out on Tuesday and will be gone, to come back and go to inpatient. As I sat there I decided that since she was nice enough to squeeze me in I would make her life a little easier and not put up a fuss when she wants to weigh me. So, I waited for my name to be called as my plan of being sneaky was being put into play. “Yeah, I won’t put up a fuss,” I thought to myself, “so, maybe she won’t notice when I get on the scale with all of my stuff.”

The nurse called my name, I gathered my purse, coffee, and book and followed her. “You know what we have to do.” without any hesitation I said, “Yes, ma’am.” and turned around to step on the scale backwards. She stopped me, “Woah, wait a second, don’t you want to hand me some of that stuff.” she grabbed my book and coffee and gestured for my purse. “We don’t want you cheating.”  Well Damn.

After that was done, Dr. M came in shortly after, she is sassy and brutally honest as well. She came in and said, “So, how have you been since the last time? Anything new? Besides still losing MORE weight.” She said that in a matter of fact tone. I had gotten a glimpse of my chart before then and realized it had gone down. I handed her the paperwork, she looked at it wondering what it was. I explained it was paperwork for inpatient treatment. “Inpatient treatment…for the anorexia?”  “Yeah.” “Awesome! I’m so glad to hear this. This is great. I’m glad you are doing this.”

I asked her about the antidepressants, she also agreed that it could be helpful and that she didn’t have or see any problem with me taking them. She went through the routine questions and asked about the usual, getting her little snarky jabs in when possible. She asked if I had a fever or chills, I answered, “I am always cold.” “Well yeah, you have no body fat.”  “Sore throat, vomiting?” I looked at her… and she answered her own question…”Oh, yeah.” She had me get on the table, I stood up and she held out her hand so I wouldn’t fall. Looking back I feel like an old lady who had to be helped up. At the time I was just fixating on “Up, step, step, sit.”

She began to fill out the paperwork, less than thrilled I had lost more weight, but relieved that I was looking into inpatient. Dr. M stopped and looked at me, “We really don’t have that many anorexics or bulimics, but I want to schedule another appointment with you when you get back and touch base. I want to hear about your experience, if it was helpful, and see how you are doing. You will be my little educator about this. I will get this stuff turned in for you.”

10 Appointments, 12 Days, 1 Tired Me.

So much has happened lately, and I’m not really sure where I left off. In the past week and a half I have had close to ten appointments. Everything from two with the therapist, to about three doctor appointments, two dietitian appointments, two other doctor appointments.

I can remember a time where I never went to the doctor. I would go very very rarely, and typically only when they needed a “current physical” for something I was doing.

The last time I met with N, the dietitian, I felt that she didn’t really care if I came back or not. Well, I came back. We focused on three aspects; food, exercise and the lax. For the food we talked about what worked, what didn’t etc. I told her I was still working on yogurt, but no Clif bars, so then she helped me decide on other bars, or just granola in baggies. N expressed how proud of me she was because I realized I can’t just wait, that I can’t mix foods and how I get discouraged and mad at myself when these feelings should be directed to the ED.

I told her that it was probably just an excuse or cop out, but that I had this mindset and thought that, “Maybe recovery just isn’t for me.” She kinda chuckled and said that wasn’t only perfectly normal, but predictable.

Then came the exercise. I told her I acknowledge that I need a healthy balance between working out and food. Once or twice she asked, “What can I do to help?”   If you have ever been in that position, you really aren’t sure how to answer. I thought for a moment and told her I thought guidelines would be good for me. I told her that there was so much that was triggering, from seeing people run on campus to others talk about their diets and weight loss. So, I was put on a “no more than 3 miles a day” remedy, and if I get antsy, which she knew I would, I am allowed to do weights or abs, but for no longer than a half hour. At first she started by saying six miles every other day, but quickly realized I’d abuse that by “forgetting” or “losing track” of the days.

The next day I had a doctor appointment that lasted two hours, followed by an appointment with S later that day. I showed up at the doctor on campus, same office as the dietitian, and even the receptionist and nurses there know my name- sheesh. So, got weighed, blood pressure sitting, blood pressure standing, etc. Then I waited for K to come in. When she did we talked about the appointment with N, talked about taking it easy for the run I’m doing next week. We talked about antidepressants again, and I said ok. She advised me it would get worse before it gets better and to be prepared, and to maybe even tell my family I’m going to see, just in case. The phone rang and pulled K from the room, she came back and said, “I’m going to be very very honest with you. That phone call was about you. It was S?”  “Oh, shit….yeah.”  She had called to I guess get more information about how I was doing and to talk about inpatient. I said I didn’t have the time, money, I’m not sick, etc. She brought me back the antidepressants after calling S back, and had me sit on the table. She listened to my heart and expressed concern that my heart rate was getting low and even mentioned hospitalization if it got any lower. So, that was that. Then came my appointment with S. She has done so much from calling numerous places, to referring me to the dietitian, to researching, it means a lot to me that she put in so much time and effort.

We talked about N and K, she brought up inpatient-AGAIN and the antidepressants. She gave me the same warning that “They will take a few days, so don’t get discouraged and stick with it.” I feel like S had a lot to say this time. S said that all of the places she called were concerned and thought I needed help sooner than later. She told me a story about a girl who was supposed to go to treatment then something happened, she had to be hospitalized before she was even allowed to go. S said I would be really pissed if I had to be force fed some gross hospital food, and not be allowed to run period, plus the nurses would hate me because I wouldn’t eat it. She told me that if I am still waiting for an “Oh shit moment”, it is going to end up being a big one, like breaking a leg or my heart, and no inpatient place will want to take me if I’m not healthy.

I am fairly certain that I was told a line of bullshit by both of the two that day:

That A) my heart rate was slower

and B) I was told that I’m borderline not “healthy” enough to go

S told me that she had called one other place, closer than the others, and that they had a waiting list, but could take me mid December. She said that I was put on the list, and she gave them my number.

On the way home from my appointment my phone rang…..