HELLO everyone! I’m back!
It’s been a while! Too long, I’d say! I fell off the face of the earth for a while! Oops! Things got a bit crazy and I got busy, but that’s okay… I’m back and ready to go! It’s the first day of school and things are nuts! UPDATE: I’m still teaching! I was furloughed and now I’m back! Just teaching ESL (English as a Second Language) and It’s been a new and exciting experience so far!!!
So …. On with my thoughts:
To fight or surrender – we all have the choice. It sounds so easy, but I know it’s not. It’s possible, but it’s not easy. So often we think we are unable to make choices. We think that we have to accept things as they are and move on, but we really don’t have to do that. It doesn’t matter what is going on — we ALWAYS have a choice. It feels like we don’t at times, but we don’t have to surrender to Ed or thoughts (or anything) for that matter!!
When it comes to recovery, things are not easy. It’s hard, and we all obviously know that. But looking at how hard it is, we have a choice – we can either fight through it or we can surrender to the eating disorder. It really is put that simply.
I was talking to my therapist and I was slightly irked. I told her that I wasn’t a weak person and I didn’t want people to treat me as if I’m weak or see me as weak because I felt I needed the eating disorder in my most recent “low.” She then said that I’m not weak, but everyone knows that I can follow a meal plan well because I’ve done it, and clinging to an eating disorder is weak. I was mad, but she’s right. Dropping everything and restricting food does nothing! It is weak! It’s saying that I’m not strong enough to handle what is in front of me right now, so I need to cling to this little “life preserve” that I think will help me because there is too much happening and this will help me to feel better. Looking at it now…. it’s kind of weak to do that.
I realized that we have a choice in all that we do. We have the thoughts in our head: “you’re fat, you can’t eat that, you have to skip that meal, you’re doing a great job at restricting, don’t eat.” The difference is…. We don’t have to listen to the thoughts. We have options. Before, I didn’t think there were options. I felt like all I could do was listen to them, but now I know I don’t have to do that. I can hear the thoughts, know they are there, accept them for what they are and make a choice. I have a choice to listen to them, or to fight them. Essentially, I can fight them, or surrender to them.
For so long all I did was surrender to them. They were so constant and so strong that I didn’t fight them and I felt I couldn’t fight them. I can’t do that anymore. There comes a point where the eating disorder does NOTHING for you anymore! It literally does NOTHING! The energy it takes to restrict is equal to the energy it takes to struggle through the meal plan. I have hit that point. I’m that old football player that is about to retire! I’m that old football player that has realized that his body just can’t take the game anymore – he has put in too many hours, too many years and too many workouts and he just can’t do it physically. For me, I’m not retiring from football…. I’m retiring from anorexia. I just can’t do it anymore. This playa can’t play the game! My body can’t do it anymore. It can’t take it. I have put in too many hours, days, years of restricting and it can’t respond anymore. Physically, I just can’t do it. My body can’t take it anymore and it has now become harder and more stressful for me to restrict than for me to follow the meal plan. If I’m following the meal plan, at least I won’t be exhausted and feel as if I’m going to pass out. I have found that it’s not worth it. It’s not worth the frustration and pain that you go through. My body knows what I’m going to do to it, so it puts up all the guards to stop me, and boy does it know how to do that! It takes so much to lose a pound that it’s nearly impossible!!!! When I felt like I was in control losing weight, I wasn’t- AT ALL. I lost the 4 lbs I felt I needed to… and I felt like shit doing it the entire time! It’s no longer worth it.
I made a deal with some of my friends from skinny camp (holla at ya Hershey! Duck face just for you!). We are following our meal plan! This is hard! This is scary! This feels impossible, but I know it’s not. It seems as if the hardest things to do are the right things to do, so I know I’m doing what I should be doing. I’ve been on this meal plan for a week and I know when I see my dietitian today it’s going to change (but I will still try to find her nice). As I was talking with my friends we have decided a few things that we all agree on…. And I think you come to a point where this all hits you:
I’m finished with this eating disorder. My body can’t take it anymore. I’ve done so much to it that it can’t hold on to the malnutrition anymore. I can’t handle the exhaustion anymore. I have realized that restricting is getting me nowhere. I don’t accomplish anything when I restrict. I feel this short-term sense of control, but what I’m trying to avoid is still there when I’m done restricting. Blinding my vision with my weight does nothing but delay what I have to deal with. I can’t continue to filter my feelings through the reflection of how fat I feel my stomach is. The eating disorder has done nothing but make me hate my body and hate so many things about myself so what good is it doing for me? It likes to make me believe I need it, but each time I go back to it, it doesn’t produce. Yes, it’s hard as hell to follow the meal plan (and that is putting it lightly), but it is also hard as hell to listen to the eating disorder and be miserable and starve myself. I would rather struggle through meals and feel well (physically) than feel awful like I have. This disorder has taken a lot from me and I know I can’t have what I want in life WITH the eating disorder. At some point there has to be a choice. I know that when I lose the weight, if I want happiness, it has to come back on. I’m going to have to surrender to the professionals now or later…. Why not now? I’m not wasting any more time. It’s just not worth it.
So, there you have it. My public announcement that I can’t and won’t fall into an awful pattern of restriction again. I just said it, and I can’t take it back! It is what it is!! Yes, there may be a down or two, but there will not be a slide back. I will be following that meal plan from this point forward. I can say it will be pretty, but no part of this process is puppy dogs and rainbows. Frankly, I just feel bad for those who have to cross paths with me when I’m mad about the meal plan. And, worse yet, I feel bad for the treatment team….. Lord help them! 🙂
So, my plan?? (can’t do this without a plan)
I’m going to be ready for when disaster strikes. I have knitting ready for the fullness and I know that it’s coming. I know what I want and what I don’t want. I also know that to move forward, I have to walk through this period. I have to put my trust in God that I will get through this part and that I won’t crumble although I feel like I will. I have to trust that I can handle this and that the professionals have walked many people out of this mess many times and I can’t be too different from the others (although, I hope they are all ready for some hate mail!)
Well…. Here’s to the final round!
I’m on my way to retiring from anorexia!