Monday, March 28, 2016

A Whole New Light

I have recently come to a point where I am ok with the way my body looks. I have bad days, but overall I can say that I am mostly content. This amazing contentment was ruffled and hindered this past weekend when......I tried on a bathing suit. Suddenly the body I was ok with became appalling. I saw cellulite on my thighs, my stomach looked huge. The only part of me that I wasn't disgusted by was my arms. Which is ironic, because I often see my arms, in short sleeves, and are not that fond of them. I had a moment of panic. How do I fix this? What kind of food do I need to avoid/what new workout regiment do I need to begin to get rid of this cellulite?? But luckily I was able to reign in my thoughts, for the most part, and think about how even when I was extremely thin (sick) I was not happy with my body. Negative thoughts still lingered, but the next day I went shopping again in a different store. 

I saw myself in a new light (literally). The lighting in this dressing room was different. I no longer saw my body in the negative way I had the day before. The cellulite that was so prominent before wasn't even visible. I was ok with myself again. So, the lighting in a dressing room is going to determine my happiness? Definitely not. This just reinforced how I cannot trust what I see in the mirror. It can be distorted by my view point, the lighting, the clothing, everything! I need to focus on trusting my treatment team that I am at a healthy weight, learning to workout in a healthy way (for my heart/bones) and eating a balanced diet. That is what I need to be focused on for my recovery-not picking apart flaws that I can see only in certain lighting. 

This is a hard truth to accept, especially when everyone is talking about getting their "bikini body." But stay strong recovery warriors! Keep up the fight. 

Monday, March 21, 2016

Jar of Hearts

I used to be very hesitant speaking about my struggles with eating in the past. That had been my identity for so long that I needed distance. I needed to be known as ME-not the girl with the ED. I am not super open about it now, but the further I get into recovery, the more I realize that it can be helpful for me and those struggling to share my experiences. It keeps me in a recovery oriented mind set and could encourage others.

I do not, however, think it is beneficial to anyone EVER to share specific behaviors, weight, calories- anything that could be latched onto as a comparison tool (just needed to make that clear).

This past weekend I drove to Nashville to meet up with some of my friends from treatment to do the NEDA walk. Driving up alone, I was able to reflect on my recovery thus far. No, things are not perfect and I still have a ways to go, but they are the best they have ever been since ED entered my life.

The last treatment center I went to in 2011, we had a fire and burned things that could potentially keep us holding onto ED. Mostly clothes. I burned multiple pairs of jeans. During this ritual I played the song "Jar of Hearts." Every lyric in that song spoke to me-it was my relationship with ED. Except one line of the song I didn't agree with: "I wish I had missed the first that we kissed." Even in treatment burning my old jeans, I didn't wish I had never met ED. I still was thankful he had come into my life and "made me skinny." WOAH, WHAT? That is such a disordered ED thought! Yet, that is how I felt until literally this past Saturday driving up to Nashville. I listened to "Jar of Hearts" and belted those words loud and proud, "I WISH I HAD MISSED THE FIRST TIME THAT WE KISSED!"

This was the first time in my entire life that I saw ED as the complete enemy. He has done nothing good for me at all! He destroyed my life. I didn't get skinny because of him. I got sick. I almost died. I missed so much LIFE. And only by the grace of God was I given the opportunity to go to treatment and have an awesome outpatient team that has helped me come so far.

I feel like this past weekend was one of realization for me. ED is glorified in our society and I bought into that idea, even in recovery. No more will I be fooled.