Thursday, August 18, 2011

Reset Button

It's been over a year since I've written anything here. Therefore, it's probably been over a year since anyone's read anything here. But I'm willing to start over and try again. In recovery, not every break from health is considered a 'relapse.' I prefer to think of it as a 'slip.'

Recovery's not a linear path. Overall, you're moving forward, but there will be dips and plateaus along the way.

If I purposely skip breakfast one morning, I'll probably be ok. If I do 500 crunches after one night of eating a little too much dinner, I'll probably be ok. Slips will happen. Relapse is not an option.

The average length of recovery from an eating disorder is 7 years. I've still got some time to reach that goal.

Wednesday, July 14, 2010

4

Day 04 → Something you have to forgive someone for.

I have a really, really hard time forgiving people sometimes. Especially if I feel like I've been treated unfairly. I have a tendency to feel like people in general think, for whatever reason, that its ok to walk all over me and treat me however they want. This, of course, is probably not true, but when someone wrongs me (especially when they wrong me in a way that is deeply hurtful) it supports that irrational conclusion. But like I said earlier, forgiveness is a major component to recovery. Forgiving helps with acceptance.

I need to forgive my peers. In general. There isn't one specific person to forgive in this instance. Because of various experiences in school and growing up and whatnot, I have become angry at my peers for what I've perceived as rejecting me. I need to forgive my peers for not being accepted.

Whether or not I've ever actually been socially rejected or marginalized or not accepted is beside the point; while growing up (and hell, up until right now), I always felt like the odd one out and although I definitely (wrongly) blame myself, I have a lot of anger towards my peers as well. I still have a hard time connecting with people my age because I assume, since they are technically my peers, they will reject me.

If I can forgive my peers for 'causing' me to feel rejected, I can accept the fact that it happened and not have to fight it anymore. I'm angry that it happened, but I need to stop finding someone to blame for it. It happened. And I guarantee I'm not the only kid who felt like the odd one out at some time or another. It's just another wonderful part of growing up :)

Three

Day 03 → Something you have to forgive yourself for.

A major part of healing is forgiveness...forgiving yourself, forgiving other people, forgiving the universe, etc. Forgiving is a part of acceptance, in many ways, and when we can accept what has happened to us or what we have done, we can move forward and stop fighting. We can heal.

I need to forgive myself for being imperfect, for being unable to be exactly what I think other people need me to be all the time. I know a lot of my entries involve perfectionism, but its a pretty prominent force in my life, as well as a lot of other people's lives. One of my therapists, Rita, vehemently labels perfectionism as a disease. And it is. It really is.

One of the things I tend to beat myself up over is my inability to constantly and consistently be what I think other people in my life need me to be. I criticize myself for not being the perfect daughter, the perfect sister, the perfect friend, the perfect girlfriend, the perfect intern etc etc etc...

Its not healthy to live for other people...in fact, it will most certainly drive you towards mental illness or something like it. I need to stop beating myself up in general, but I specifically need to forgive myself for not being able to exist solely for other people. I need to be ok with being able to just exist.

Forgiveness is acceptance. I forgive myself for not being perfect. I accept the fact that I can't always be what other people need.

I'm not perfect, and that's ok.

Monday, July 12, 2010

Two

Day 02 → Something you love about yourself.

As cliche as it sounds, it can be hard to think of something I love about myself, especially when I am being audacious enough to post it for the world to see. When you're in ED, you're persuaded to hate everything about yourself. Everything. Nothing is good enough, and it never will be. And let me tell you, ED IS WRONG. I realize that now. We're supposed to like things about ourselves. We're wired so that we can be content with what we have on some level. Laura, my dietitian, always uses this example:

"You're friend may have the Ferrari and you think its great and would love to drive it, but you still like your little beat-up sedan just because its yours."

I like that. I am glad I have the things I have (in regards to my mind/body) just because they're mine. So when all is said and done, I love a lot of things about myself, but the number one thing I am in love with right now is that I am strong enough to choose recovery for myself every day. I chose recovery from day one; I was strong enough to ask for help and confess my sins. I love the fact that I love myself enough to make the choice for health.

Every day.

Sunday, July 11, 2010

Copying my sister


So my sister Carly is doing this thing and I keep reading her posts and its pretty cool...and honestly, I see it as having a lot of healing properties. For 30 days, you write on these topics:


Day 01 → Something you hate about yourself.
Day 02 → Something you love about yourself.
Day 03 → Something you have to forgive yourself for.
Day 04 → Something you have to forgive someone for.
Day 05 → Something you hope to do in your life.
Day 06 → Something you hope you never have to do.
Day 07 → Someone who has made your life worth living for.
Day 08 → Someone who made your life hell, or treated you like shit.
Day 09 → Someone you didn’t want to let go, but just drifted.
Day 10 → Someone you need to let go, or wish you didn’t know.
Day 11 → Something people seem to compliment you the most on.
Day 12 → Something you never get compliments on.
Day 13 → A band or artist that has gotten you through some tough ass days. (write a letter.)
Day 14 → A hero that has let you down. (letter)
Day 15 → Something or someone you couldn’t live without, because you’ve tried living without it.
Day 16 → Someone or something you definitely could live without.
Day 17 → A book you’ve read that changed your views on something.
Day 18 → Your views on gay marriage.
Day 19 → What do you think of religion? Or what do you think of politics?
Day 20 → Your views on drugs and alcohol.
Day 21 → (scenario) Your best friend is in a car accident and you two got into a fight an hour before. What do you do?
Day 22 → Something you wish you hadn’t done in your life.
Day 23 → Something you wish you had done in your life.
Day 24 → Make a playlist to someone, and explain why you chose all the songs. (Just post the titles and artists and letter)
Day 25 → The reason you believe you’re still alive today.
Day 26 → Have you ever thought about giving up on life? If so, when and why?
Day 27 → What’s the best thing going for you right now?
Day 28 → What if you were pregnant or got someone pregnant, what would you do?
Day 29 → Something you hope to change about yourself. And why.
Day 30 → A letter to yourself, tell yourself EVERYTHING you love about yourself.

I believe that honesty and openness (and being unashamed about it) are important qualities in maintaining mental health. After all, AA taught us that "you're only as sick as your secrets."

Therefore, because I'm trying to perfect the art of good mental health, I have decided to join her in this project starting now:

Day 1: Something you hate about yourself.

Woah, we're just jumping right into here...ok...hm. Hate, as everyone says, is a pretty strong word and though its easy for me in conversation to come up with a million silly little things I can say I "hate" about myself, its a lot tougher when you actually have to think about the word and its actual meaning.

I'm working on accepting myself, flaws included. The ED voice in my head for so many years told me many things to focus on hating about myself, and I'm not going to revisit any of those things because ED is just plain wrong. So, from a healthier standpoint, something about myself I can say I hate at times (but try not to beat myself up for) is how much of a perfectionist I can be.

What I truly hate about the perfectionist in me is how I constantly compare myself to other people, be it looks, performance, conversational ability, dancing, laughing, etc. And the silliest thing about it is that because of my perfectionism, I always come out the loser in my comparisons because the only way to "win" against someone else is to be perfect. And, now we know, perfection isn't exactly attainable. So when I engage in comparisons, I'm fighting a losing battle that ultimately serves to make me feel bad about myself.

I'm working on not comparing myself to other people any more. I'm learning that one can actually exist and be happy and good without having to "live up" to anything. Other people can go do and be good, and I can go do and be good, and ultimately, they have no impact on one another. Your "perfection" does not strengthen or weaken my "perfection."

So, I'm trying to change the thing I "hate" about myself (which is really something that ED implanted in my brain), and I'm much more healthier for it.

Sunday, May 9, 2010

Sometimes

Its ok to eat 1/2 a pint of ice cream.



Especially if you enjoy every bite :)

Saturday, April 17, 2010

100 Days

I have reached a new milestone:

I have been binge/purge & restriction free for over 100 days.

Elation ensues :)



This is what I feel like


This was my ultimate goal while I have been counting days, and now that I have reached it, I am going to stop counting.

Recovery has obviously become ingrained in my life; each new day free of symptoms is no longer abnormal. I don't have those compulsions anymore.

I have stopped going to the program at St. Joe's as the treatment team felt that I was far enough and strong enough in my recovery to do this on my own.

I think I'm proving them right.

100 days...that's pretty damn good.

My sister made me a pretty necklace and said that it was like my AA chip, but for ED (since we don't get chips. I know, lame, right?)


I don't get one of these...

I don't think I can fully convey just how much of an accomplishment this is...the compulsions to do my ED feel completely gone. That was the hardest part. Honestly, I was never sure I would get to this point. Six months ago, I would have been satisfied with partial recovery. I would have settled for acting on my ED only once a day. At this point, I can taste (pun intended) actual recovery.

I think I'm going to be a success story.



PS Go to my sister's etsy to see the beautiful jewelery she makes. I am one of her models :)

http://www.etsy.com/shop/lovelyandamazing