In group therapy today one therapist told us that one of the first things she learned in her classes at college for therapy was that people with eating disorders are simply that…people with eating disorders. They are not anorexic or bulimic, they are people with eating disorders. As far as I’m concerned, this was taught in a college class, not said by a random person without any knowledge of eating disorders, the many people who use these words, so therefore I believe this to be true, that these words are not actual words. This takes away the motivation of doing awful things to ourselves because we feel it is our identity. If anyone uses the words anorexic or bulimic around me, I will accurately say that they are wrong.
Today, with the treatment center that has been immensely helpful to me, had a panel for asking questions to people who have gone through the program, and who are recovered (or parents of the recovered). I went in and all the staff and patients I knew were sitting and watching recovered patients and parent tell their story. Something really got my eye. My old Psychiatrist. Well, the one I have if I am in programming at this center. She has always been a beautiful person inside and out, but today I saw something that gave me, like I said, a new beautiful perspective. A lot of the times when I have seen her, even with just me in her office or around the building, she isn’t beaming with happiness. This is not to say she is an unhappy person, she is just a very serious individual who is very strong and very inspiring, who also scares people just a tad, however, this scariness is in the best way possible. “We better get better!” What I noticed in her was a glowing beaming sensation on her face whilst she was listening to these women who have recovered from their eating disorder. When in our eating disorder, our team doesn’t get a beaming smile until this happens. Our recovery is what leads to a glowing face of our team and the ones we love. In our eating disorder, it is all drained away. Honestly, maybe all of our team needs a candid picture of their faces glowing from pure joy of their recovered patients and have them shown in a group of what that part of recovery looks like. This part of recovery will be the same each time, and something in the future of recovery you actually can predict.
Whilst I was in my iop process group, people were talking about when they didn’t want to eat their snack and then ate it anyway. They said it with such pride in the epitome of strength and they were beaming with their triumph. It was inspiring. How beautiful strength is, is inspiring. My other epiphany goes along with what so many people tell me “you are not your eating disorder.” Many times in my mind before I do a behavior I think about how awful it will be to myself if I don’t engage in behaviors. Today I just realized that I am not harming my future self. I am not throwing myself under the bus by eating. I am not giving up everything by eating. I am throwing this horrid disease under the bus. I am ruining this eating disorders future. I am harming the eating disorder only. When you harm the eating disorder, it’s the only thing that gets hurt. When we engage in Ed behaviors, we harm everyone around us as well.
I made friends with a star. I saw this star two nights ago. It was the first star of the night and I wished upon it, surprised I remembered that wishing upon a star rhyme. I stared and marveled at the star, even though it was only a little dot in the sky, I just imagined what it really was. It twinkled in the distance. I decided to look at that star and wish upon it every night, the same beautiful little star. Do I know that much about astrology? No. Do I know if that is always the same star or if even stars stay in the same place every night? No. But I saw that star or a star in the same place last night and I looked up like I just found my star. My star. Wishing is all the more special. From my beautiful star friend far, far away.
I started this blog as a way to share my story, I had no idea it was going to be the beginning of recovery for myself. Recovering for yourself is the happiness portion of recovery. If you recover for others, you are suffocating the guilt, but you may not be fully ready to recover for yourself. You end up eliminating the guilt, which makes you believe it was all worth while, which it was, I promise you, but at the same time, you may still be triggered easily. You may still have eating disordered thoughts, which leads to unhappiness whether you engage in them or not. Writing this blog helped me ruminate on positive experiences by thinking about my happy thoughts and emotions over and over again in my head during the experience and afterwards, just to make sure I didn’t forget every single thing I was going to write about in my blog later on. Why was this so important? I found living for positivity. I found living for helping others. I found living for positive experiences and living for a life worth living. Realizing how my negative emotions are being tied with my triggers, is what led to being able to talk about my triggers instead of bottling them up. This led to a release in my anger which led to me deleting word after word of anger in my writing because writing it down led to me feeling better. I changed the words from anger to positivity and the end product ended up being a positive blog post that I noticed could maybe help others in the process. This led to finding the extreme joy in positivity. This leads to going to treatment just for a push in the right direction. People would say I was in a much better place. someone today said the greatest validating thing to me that I could ever hope to hear. She said she misses me in php because of how fun I try to make it and how I can make others happy. Recovery is such a dream. I know all of you will be able to see that someday. I just hope it is soon. ❤
Me and my Bailey. No Prince Charming. No eating disorder being happy. No eating disorder at the moment at all. But that fairy tale life of Prince Charming weddings and babies isn’t the only thing we girls should be pressured to strive for. This picture of me and my dog is fairy tale as well. I don’t need a prince, and this life is my fairy tale. I took this picture in hopes to prove how lovingly a life can be without being the epitome of a fairy tale, and that it still can look exactly like it came from the pictures of a fairy tale picture book.