Trusting The Process With a Trust Problem

If not now, then when?

The question was enough to fuel my morning drive to work.

Recovery has been filling my mind and thoughts, probably more than it should.

Life is going great, I have no more stress than the next person,

A good job                                          an awesome dog

A warm apartment                          a running car                      supportive friends

Coffee                                                  benefits                               paid time off

The ability to run

Why does my recovery want to take a sudden stop?

I don’t think it was sudden, it never is, but the restricting became more and more, until my list of foods was as depleted as my ability to fight ED off.

I’ve begun seeing a nutritionist, after months and months of putting it off, not wanting to go, etc. I like her, she is a believer and advocate of HAES, believes in intuitive eating. Overall, I have enjoyed the experience.

Yet the battle in my head is still raging.

It isn’t as easy as the “talking back” that I hear others talk about so frequently. No, for me, it has to be factual.

Which kinda fueled the internal dialogue this morning.

On more than one occasion I have been in a room of people struggling with their Eating Disorders, whether it be in treatment, support groups, wherever.

I look around, (and no, this is not going where you think it is going), and sometimes I am almost the oldest in the room, sometimes I am practically the youngest. When I am at the upper range of age I remember being their age, being so filled of denial, and so full of my eating disorder.

When there are people much older than me, I think of that is how I want my life to be at their age?

Should my life be focused on my body and eating disorder when:

I have kids

Get married

Start another job

My kids are grown up

My siblings get married

So, if not now, then when?

I also have “Trust the Process” tattooed on my wrist, to remind me of recovery.

I’m struggling with following my meal plan given to me, and it is so difficult to listen to my body when I am hungry and not feel the need to run first in order to “earn” the food that my body needs.

I am telling myself that I wouldn’t want someone to tell/question me on how to do my job, so then why am I questioning and fighting her so much?

She knows what she is talking about and is on my side, so why am I fighting her?

I need to focus on Trusting the Process.

I may not always enjoy it or find it easy, but I’ve been here before.


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.


Internal Confliction Recovery vs. Relapse

There are times I desperately miss it. I question recovery altogether and wonder if relapse would, or even could, really be “that bad”.

I miss the feeling of having some type of false control, especially when I am stressed out and not sure what else to turn to. Being enthralled and wrapped up in the appealing aspect of ED.

Yesterday I went to the NEDA walk. I was scared shitless, didn’t want to go. Disordered fear overtook my logical mind and I was terrified of being the fattest one there, comparing bodies and sizes. Feeling inadequate and not good enough to be there celebrating. I had a great time and the support was indescribable.

Then I got home, I had a mental freak out. I jumped rope in the living room for an hour and worked out as hard as I could. I wasn’t sure which I regretted more, the disordered behavior I was engaging in, or the guilt from lunch earlier that day.

The feeling of being the exception to the rule, or invincible. Thinking that eating disorders hurt other people, not me. The disordered thought process of considering restricting an accomplishment and believing you don’t have to eat.

In those moments I try, keyword TRY, to remember I am at a 10.5 on the emotion scale. Meaning I am emotion-over-full, I attempt to breathe and let it pass.

The struggle is real.

Trust the Process!!

Completely Candor

                I am guilty, guilty of mentally falling into the cliché stereotyped expectations of eating disorder sufferers. Convinced I was healthy, I would never allow myself to utter the words “eating disorder”. Instead would defend my actions as “picky”, “already ate”, “healthy” or, “I’m just weird about food.”
                Visualizing the emaciated, stick figure, thigh-gap possessing, rib showing, cheek bone protruding individuals as the ones with eating disorders. These are the girls I longed to become. Somehow my value and self-esteem would increase with the more visible ribs and thigh gap. On days when I felt like a failure I allowed my self-hatred and ED behaviors be fueled by “thinspiration” posts. Sure that by restricting and running I could accomplish slowly shrinking.
                In my mind, not being tiny and itty bitty was viewed as a failure, not a relief. I consistently lived feeling as though I was a screw up and could do nothing right- this was no different.You can’t do anything right,” it would scream, “you can’t even have an eating disorder the right way.” This just fed my self-hatred and loathing.
                Living life 100 mph I never allowed myself to slow down or stop for long. Being deep in my eating disorder was just a strict version of what I considered a life. I refused to consume more than 300 calories a day. I popped laxatives and diet pills like tic tacs; because of this I would shake and tremble, sometimes having to stop midway up the stair case before continuing to class. My bag got progressively heavier, my legs weak and intestines gurgling.
                The laxatives served two purposes; one was to rid my system of whatever was in it, the second was a deterrent to keep me from eating. With nothing in my system there was nothing to flush, but with one bite could keep me running to the bathroom during class.
                During this time I also had two gym memberships, giving me access to three gyms actually (well four, if you count the one at work). I started running in temperatures ranging as low as 16 degrees Fahrenheit. Going to the rec in the morning, then using the gym on campus between classes, running after class but just before work. This was life, it was consumed by when I could get my next run in. I felt like a junkie, waiting for my next fix.
                The foods I allowed myself to consume was slim to none. On a good day I would grab an apple and cup of black coffee. After my run it would be time for a refill on coffee to help the shakes subside. My jello legs would then find their way to class where I continued on my coffee to keep me warm and focused.
                I would skip sleeping to run, sometimes on the treadmill until 11 pm, to be up to run at 5 am, I would skip class to run, skip study sessions, and would rather spend time at the gym than studying.
                If I felt truly hungry when I got home I allowed  myself one egg white, tomato and spinach, and would smother it with sriracha, maybe even an onion if I was feeling generous.
                Still, I deemed myself “healthy”. I was able to run, I still went to class, I wasn’t XX lbs. I knew my actions weren’t healthy, but still considered myself to be in great health. I also knew I was unable to stop my actions and behaviors by myself.
                I had my gallbladder taken out because of issues with stomach acid, ripped my entire IT band, fell at work from not eating and had a hairline fracture of my sacrum and coccyx, and hadn’t seen my period in who know how long. Yet the only thing that matters to me was that my weight never plummeted, so therefore I was never sick.
                My ED wasn’t serious. I wasn’t hospitalized, never passed out and got hurt, wasn’t itty bitty or fragile. I didn’t need treatment, I wasn’t “sick”, just struggling. Treatment wasn’t necessary, I was fine, I didn’t DESERVE treatment, or recovery.
                Recovery was for those who had hit rock bottom, were nothing but a hollow shell of a person and a skeleton, were on a feeding tube and weren’t able to walk, let alone run. Recovery was for those much worse than me. I didn’t want or need help or sympathy, I had it under control. My body was involuntarily throwing up food, but that was because of my own actions and decisions, why should anyone care?
                I was never super sick, never deathly ill or fragile. My recovery mindset is based on my views of my eating disorder. My ED was never THAT bad, therefore, recovery is more important to those super sick. I’m undeserving of recovery because there are others out there who are more sick and need it more than me. I never took my ED seriously, thinking I am invincible, unworthy and undeserving. It seemed more like a security blanket than a life of slavery.
                Apparently how worthy and deserving of recovery I am is based solely on my weight and nothing else….?
                I do hope that at some point I will be able to look back and call bullshit on my “healthy” ED lies and reconsider my undeserving mindset. I don’t want to look back and tell people I was fine, healthy. I want to own it for whatever it may be, disordered or not. Sometimes, when I am daydreaming, I picture a recovered self, telling my story. What would I say? “I wasn’t sick or bad or anything though….”

Running, or Running From

“Just write” she says, yeah fucking right, I want to run. Run far away, nothing but asphalt under me, sky above me and the sun on me. My feet keeping tempo at the same beat that floods through my ears. Ignoring everyone and everything, completely tuned out from the world. Being able to numb out and ignore my problems that wait for me as soon as I stop running.

Even temporary freedom, no phone, no people no commitments or small talk- this is one of the only times I’m perfectly content being with me. Not comfortable being me, but being with me.

I am not thinking about Zach and how he wants to come over so we can fool around and have no interest in a relationship. I’m not stressed out about the fact I was accidently talking to a married guy, or how Colby wants to go out. Or about Matt, oh dear God, fucking Matt and his excessive amount of unnecessary bull shit. Sending me letters in the mail. Letters?? Really?? Why are you sending me stuff in the mail? Letters, a package? Why?

My main concern when I am running is how many calories I am burning and how many miles I can get in. There is nothing standing in my way and the feeling is one of freedom and relaxation. It is my own version of therapy. I’ve told people before that, “Only the Lord himself could stop me during a run. He would have to come down and stand right there.” There are very few circumstances where I will stop what I am doing mid-run to cater to something else.

This, is where it all gets complicated though. I also run because I absolutely love it. The feeling of my pony tail bouncing, my hair blowing in the wind, the sweat dripping down my back, feeling my heart beat- I love it. My knee and hip begin to ache, but I can feel the smile across my face, watching passing cars wave and even cheer me on. It is even a prideful thing, being able to push my body from starting with three miles and working to be able to do a half marathon. It is a sense of accomplishment. Thrilled that I have made it to this many miles.

Am I running to run and for enjoyment, or what am I running from? Am I running away from my feelings and running from stuff? Where do I draw the line? It’s such a grey area for me. Running because “I have to” or because “I want to”?

9.3 Mile Run…Backwards

Overall, I have been doing fairly well with my attempt at recovery. Slip ups here, restricting there, purging now and then. Even with this, I am doing much better than I would have if I never would have gone to treatment.  Saturday I did a 15k. I found out just a few days earlier that I have a small tear of my meniscus. Against numerous opinions and comments, advice, what have you, I still chose to run the race.

I had been slipping, I knew that. Throwing up more frequently, eating less. My meal plan has become more of a suggestion than an actual guide. So, Saturday morning came, I was told by someone from treatment to make sure I packed extra food, even though the staff there all thought it was a bad idea for me to do the run.  I wrapped my knee the best I could figuring if nothing else, for some stability. It was pouring the rain, my knee was in a lot of pain.

It was definitely a pride thing. I wanted to accomplish this run, finish, be proud of what I had done- even if it was self destructive and disordered.

I finished the run even though by mile 7 my knee and hip were in so much unbelievable pain. Afterwards, I ate a snack, but never added anything else to it to make up for the calories I had burned off. I got home and my best friend and her family were making tacos. In my head I thought, “Ok, cool. Protein, fat, veg, starch.- perfect.”  I attempted to eat some, then I began to freak.

The disordered thoughts came back twice as loud, demanding, screaming, threatening, belittling. I went to the bathroom and threw up everything. Ed was screaming at me, “You did the run without any extra food, you are fine. Think of all the calories you burned off today during that run, I bet you are back in negative calories. What the hell did you just do actually eating?! Why the hell would you even choose to run if your fat ass is just going to eat?!?!” The following day, I skipped breakfast, restricted for snack, then attempted to eat lunch. I heard it again, “You barely ate at all yesterday, you did great. I bet you could have gone all day today without eating too….but NOOOOO, had to go and ruin that one too, didn’t ya?”  So, then I threw up the little lunch I had consumed.

It occurred to me, that running the race wasn’t probably the smartest idea I had. I knew how badly I struggle with exercise addiction. Everyone else from treatment knew as well, plus with my knee. I was just so stubborn I didn’t want to listen or believe it. Running over 9 miles, and puking twice, all within 24 hours… this is not a good sign, I thought.

So, I emailed treatment, was honest and told her about how I did the run. It reignited some major disordered thoughts. That was late Sunday. She responded, and set me up with an appointment on Monday for outpatient services.

It was stressful and embarrassing to walk back into treatment for help. I told my dietitian that I had really begun to slip lately. She knew I was going to struggle with working out, and I explained I would make up excused to avoid adding anything extra to my meal plan after working out because I hadn’t, “worked out long enough, or hard enough, or just wasn’t hungry.”  She told me her main goal was to get me back on the meal plan.

After that, I went and spoke with the clinical director and she asked about the run. I told her that it probably wasn’t a good idea. Besides limping with my knee, she quickly realized that it had probably set off a domino effect with my eating and the thought patterns

So, here I am. Trying to get back on the meal plan, going to treatment now for outpatient guidance and help. I have said it for months now, I so desperately want a healthy relationship between eating and working out.

Trust the process!!

Running from my Eating Disorder

10985274_10203187436033126_1776184478909549160_nThis picture was taken the first time I got exercise approval in treatment. I was told to try and “walk” first. I was so beyond thrilled.

There are many things in my life that I thoroughly enjoy, even love. Running is one of those things. I soon realized I was using running as a coping mechanism. To me, I would excuse the amount I ran as “healthy”, I didn’t smoke, this was a “healthy” habit I had picked up. It soon became ritualistic, expected, needed, and a way to run away from myself as well as my own eating disorder. I felt the most alive when I was nearly dying during a run.

I can’t remember exactly when it happened, but I remember when I was barely able to run one mile without stopping. One turned into three, I ate less, ran more. 3 turned into 5, then 7, even 10 miles at a time. Sometimes running multiple times a day consuming barely 500 calories a day. I was still healthy though. My body was still capable to sustain a run. Never mind that I skipped classes like Organic Chemistry II, Microbiology to Health and Nutrition, and Cell and Molecular Biology in order to get that extra run in.

I loved running. It got me out of my own head. It consumed time that I might be otherwise told to eat or FEEL. I am still in complete shock of how my body was able to sustain itself. I would reach mile 5 and was barely able to stand, and my vision would begin to come in and out, I was always convinced I would pass out and fall into the street.

Running turned from a “want to” to a “need” and “have” to. It was no longer enjoyable, it wasn’t a personal goal or record anymore, but to see how many calories I could burn off. How far into the negative calories I could reach.

I didn’t necessarily use running as a “punishment” per se, but more like a giving me permission to eat. “Well, if I run 4 miles, thats xxx calories. So that apple I ate is understandable.” I would run in 18 degree weather, even in shorts. Unable to catch my breath, snot frozen to my face.

My period continued to be something I only heard about and read about, never actually experiencing such thing in years. God forbid Aunt Flow actually ever came, I probably would have ran 15 miles, associating my period with body fat rather than being “healthy”.

Everything I ate was no longer just the calorie obsession, but was immediately converted to miles that needed to be ran in order to burn it off.

During treatment I had exercise taken away from me. I was still so positive that I was completely fine, I wanted to go run. My body could tolerate it and sustain it just fine. Forget the fact I had torn my entire IT band from hip to knee, and have a reoccurring hip injury that will require back surgery. It took so much time for me to realize that it was acceptable for me to eat something and not feel the need to go and immediately burn it off.

Having to sit with these calories and the feeling of fullness was something that terrified me. I began to pace the stairs, run in place. Anything to burn the calories off. After many weeks this feeling became more tolerable.

The opportunity was given to me to be able to use my running watch to track the distance I ran. I was given exercise privilege, I was told to walk, but everyone there knew better. I was told that whatever I burned I had to make up calorically. The choice was mine. I was able to decided if I wanted to go on a run, but I understood that if I did, I had to eat or drink something to make up for it.

In my mind it was never like that. You work out or run to burn off calories, not to consume something else to “make up” for it. That logic was ridiculous. It worked. I ran, but understood and knew that I would have to add something extra to my meal plan.

Leaving treatment I began to pack extra food with me, even an Ensure in case of a food “emergency”. I run between classes sometimes, but depending on the distance, I’ll have a Quest bar or Clif Bar, maybe even an Ensure.

I ran 10 miles Friday. I ate a big bowl of oatmeal to help fuel my run. Let that digest, then hit the road. My legs weren’t as weak and trembly like they had been before treatment. I was able to see, wasn’t as lethargic and shaky. It was different than I was used to. I now enjoy running and do it because I like it, not because my self-hatred filled eating disorder tells me I have to.

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


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.

Would I be her in 30 some odd years?

Fall Break, a week of beaches, drinks, meals, bathing suits, comparing, body checking, purging, and of course, working out.

I had already worked out, the haunting thought of working out and purging consumed me. At aound 10:30 at night the only thing I could think of were the amount of calories in that rum I had taken in. I put my shoes on, grabbed my iPod, and headed down the 13 floors down to the gym.

The gym was empty, every machine was free for my choosing, the tv off, the room silent…. with one exception. There, on the front treadmill, was a lady, probably mid to late 50s, working out. “What compels somebody to workout at 10:30 at night?” I wondered to myself while stepping onto the treadmill.

During my run I was so fixated on myself, whoever decided that the entire wall in front of the treadmills should be mirrors should be punched square in the jaw. I watched as my thighs jiggled and touched, watched as my chubby cheeks bounced with every step, saw my gut splosh back and forth with my strides. My entire run was a just a body check from hell; admiring my protruding collarbone, watching my arms, like sticks, swing along my side. Even watching my jiggling thighs I was disgusted, but yet impressed and prideful at the fact my hands were able to fit around them so easily. Sickened by my flabbing stomach, but excited that my ribs were protruding more than the flab.

Being so far gone into my own deep thoughts and body checking mentality I had forgotten about the lady who, at this point, had moved to the stationary bike. With my middle finger and ring finger clasped to my collarbone I continued to run. My collarbone clearly visible and exposed through my large t-shirt, my sports bra laid across the bone, not touching the surrounding skin. I was more aware now though, that during my run and body checking mode, this lady was watching, quietly from a far. This whole time she had been watching the pinching, scrutinizing, judging, and self hatred that had been unfolding on the treadmill.

Checking my watch, it was past eleven by now, the lady was still hard in her work out. My thought went back to the, “I wonder what motivates her to be in the gym at 11 at night working out.” Then, I began to wonder. Was her workout motivated by self hatred too? Did she struggle with an eating disorder? Would I be her in 30 some odd years?- Not able to enjoy my own vacation because of the extreme dissatisfaction I have towards myself.

I AM HEALTHY… and done fighting.

Today when I left my appointment I felt stressed, discouraged, frazzled, and just pretty done.
Even my little brother, well, I can’t even call him that. My younger brother, he is 13 and is taller than I am by a lot and weighs about the same as me. He could tell I was upset when I was leaving today. He asked why I was crying, I wasn’t, I was just rubbing my face. He didn’t know where we were, or what I was doing; he stayed outside, listening to music. In all honesty seeing my brother so concerned about me and defensive made me feel like I was important. “What the hell happened in there? Are you ok?” I was waiting for the words “Who’s ass do I have to kick..” bc I could feel it coming.
I honestly feel like recovery isn’t for me.
I’m not saying I want to die. I’m just kind of done.
Done fighting, done exerting energy I don’t have. Just over it all.
I felt very discouraged today. My relationships are fucked up. I am very apathetic. I am the healthiest/fattest/laziest/ etc person ever with an eating disorder.
Yes, C, yes. I would love to go into treatment. Almost have to want to give a damn about getting better. Be forced to do things that will help me to get better. I cannot miss work, I cannot miss that much school. I don’t have that kind of money to just piss away.
I’ve kinda just become accepting and half-ass with everything. I’ve given up and in. C wanted to talk to my doctor… fine, give me the damn paper to sign. Want to talk to my best friend? Fine, I’ll give you the number, I’ve become almost passive, just trying to placate her and the eating disorder. I’ve become a hollow vessel full of nothing but self hatred. In my hand during my appointment was my coffee cup. If you would have looked closer you would have seen the picture of my sister and I on the side of it. Our fingers laced crossing the finish line of one of our runs. I almost began to cry as I saw her beautiful face while talking about inpatient. Yes, I would love to go into treatment and get better, because this is not living, and I would never want to leave my sister.
Being told I have to make a doctor appointment was irritating. I hate doctors, I spent weeks upon weeks having at least one doctor appointment a week. I’m not sure what you want to hear. My blood work has came back almost perfect every time. My weight? pretty fat. I AM HEALTHY.


I squat over 100 lbs with the bench press bar.
I leg press more than twice my body.
I run miles on miles on top of miles.
I dead lift.
Clean and Jerk.
I am the healthiest person with an eating disorder ever.
Being told I need to go to the doctor just felt like I wasn’t believable.
Trust me, I have wished, hoped, PRAYED that something would be funky, wrong, bad. That my esophagus would rupture.. ANYTHING. It hasn’t happened… because I am unfortunately FUCKING HEALTHY.
I’m done fighting for something that has no importance to me… me.