Keep Treading the Water

Willows over water

Living in recovery (or at least attempting to) is strange. At times, the current sweeps you under and pins you under the water until you feel your lungs about to burst. Other times, the water seems like a calm pool, perhaps even enjoyably cool and refreshing.

Then there are days, weeks, months, years when you are just treading the water. You aren’t about to drown, but your feet certainly do not touch the ground to stabilize you. Each recovery-based choice takes considerable effort and seems like a waste most of the time. However, making those healthy choices is not impossible.

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Do We Ever Just Eat?

Whenever I have a meal or snack, the first thing I look for is a distraction. A movie or TV show must be on, a book must be open, or a person must be talking to me.

This made me think if I ever just eat? Does anyone simply eat without distracting himself or herself? If so, does that person experience more mindfulness and healthy/normal/undisordered eating?

Look around while others are eating. How many people are on their phones? What about watching television? Strange, isn’t it? People talk about their hunger or favorite foods. Yet, these same people seem to spend little time focusing on eating itself.

I am not sure if this is necessarily a bad thing. It just is an observation that I made. Does this contribute to disordered eating? Possibly. I am not really sure.

What are your thoughts?

Running from the Urges

What do you do when you have the urge to use a symptom? When suddenly, you feel like you must cut or you will die? When purging seems like the only option? When isolating for a week sounds like the only thing that will keep you safe?

You have to run. Run to a coping skill. Run to a loved one. Run to your recovery.

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Lent with an Eating Disorder

Lentil dish

A lentil dish that I ate out in Oxford

Lent used to be rather simple. Give up candy. Don’t eat sweets. Turn down desserts.

However, anorexia made it more confusing and dangerous. Recovering from that the next few years was difficult but possible. Trying to find a new way to fast that did not include restriction made me creative.

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Managing New Symptoms

Drained But Not Depleted

Just when you conquer one type of symptom, another one seems to arrive. Either that or a whole new disorder itself.

Life is so wearying sometimes. I am tired of vaulting between not eating and over eating and getting rid of food. All of it is just too much.

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When One Person Complains about Body Image, Everyone Feels Awful

There is nothing more rare, nor more beautiful, than a woman being unapologetically herself; comfortable in her perfect imperfection. ― Steve Maraboli

There is nothing more rare, nor more beautiful, than a woman being unapologetically herself; comfortable in her perfect imperfection. ― Steve Maraboli

Growing up overweight, I always hated hearing thin girls complain about their bodies. If they feel gross and dislike themselves, what must they think of me?

However, I kept my mouth shut and felt disgusted with myself. The years of anorexia changed that a bit. I am ashamed to admit that I began complaining about my weight and appearance more publically. Still, I tried hard to be positive so as not to trigger others.

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Sometimes You Just Need to Voice Your Needs

Be quiet. Do not complain. Remain strong like nothing is wrong.

Those are voices in my head. Sometimes those messages are helpful. Usually, however, these words create more drama and pain in my life. Instead of being honest about difficulties, I try to manage by myself until I end up sobbing, feeling alone and defeated.

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Why Do Loneliness and Hungry Go Together?

Olaf cupcake

Olaf cupcake

For some reason, certain emotions seem to be linked together more often than others. Happiness and relaxation, sadness and tiredness, stress and irritability.

Another pair that I often link is loneliness and hungry. When I am lonely, I get hungry often. This does not seem uncommon from what I can tell. Others seem to eat when they are lonely or feel unloved.

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Eating Disorder Recovery Playlist

Meeting Ariel

The power of words and music is great!

Music is a great source of therapy. Something about the beat, melody, and words mixed together makes me feel so much better.

So here are some of the songs that help me feel better about food, my body, eating, and recovery:

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Old Habits Die Hard

Mickey Ghost Apple

Sometimes I am okay with eating, and other times I struggle.

Why is eating so difficult? I eat too much or too little or get rid of it but mostly just obsess about it all of the time. When will I be free of this?

Getting rid of an eating disorder, escaping its clutches, is so much hard work. Will I ever be free? I am not sure but certainly hope so.

Despite my present annoyance at myself, I know that there is progress being made. Do I mess up? Sure. Does that make me an awful person? No. I am human and make mistakes.

Still, fighting the voice inside is so difficult. There are many small victories and big setbacks each day. Progress is all that I can hope for right now.