Monday, June 29, 2009

I'm trying to be okay...

Two weeks ago, I re-commited to follow my insane meal plan. And the verdict from the dietician today... I am finally starting to gain some weight! I have been eating a lot better during these past two weeks, but is it getting any easier?? NOPE! Listen, I am just being honest.

I want to be okay with eating all this food, I want to be okay with gaining weight...but I am not right now, and I would be lying if I said I was okay with it. But... I know that it is what needs to happen, so I am white-knuckling it and I am doing it, despite the negative & loud voice that is constantly in my head! I am trying to distract myself and focus on other things - but it's still such a challenge for me. But I will get there, I know I will!

I'm doing okay, I think. I am really trying to be okay. I am starting to pull myself out of that deep dark hole that I fell into and couldn't get out of for a few months there. It seems like when I crash...I really know how to crash! And that is something that does concern me, and it concerns my treatment team, and my family, and my friends. I need to learn how to stop the relapses before they completely consume me! But I haven't seemed to figure that out yet...

Something I am working on with my therapist is learning how to dream again. I had dreams when I was younger, I was a big dreamer! First I wanted to be a gymnast or ballerina, then I wanted to be a singer in a girl group, then I wanted to be a songwriter in Nashville or New York, then I wanted to live in Manhattan and work in the fashion industry. But unfortunately, my e.d. has been involved too much in my life to ever allow any of these dreams to become a reality. In my early twenties, I wrote songs for aspiring singers and loved to be in recording studios - it was my whole world. But e.d. took it away from me. Then in my mid twenties, I decided to give that up and focus on my other passion. So I went to fashion design school and loved it! And I had dreams of moving to New York and working for a fashion magazine or owning my own clothing boutique. But once again, e.d. took that away from me also and forced me to drop out.

So, my therapist is working with me on discovering my passions again, and trying to get me to believe that it's not too late for me to reach out and follow my dreams! He is helping me learn to believe in myself again, and helping me to take the steps and make the decisions that will help me get to those dreams. But first, I need to be healthy! I can't have these dreams and accomplish what I hope to accomplish if e.d. is still in my life. I can't! So, I need to be strong enough to let that part of me go, and let it go forever...and to be completely honest - that really terrifies me right now, because as much as my e.d. has hurt me throughout all these years, it has been the only constant in my life. And it's hard to let that go.


Wednesday, June 24, 2009

The Ballerina

I have decided that I really want to do ballet again. I haven't taken any classes since college, and I miss it so much! So, I have made a list of reasons & benefits for taking ballet again and hopefully when I show it to my treatment team - they will give me the go ahead. Fingers crossed!

* It makes me happy!
* It will help strengthen, tone, & heal my body!
* It helps relieve stress & tension from the body!
* It helps promote creative expression!
* It develops poise & body awareness!
* It helps give you better posture!
* My e.d. shouldn't be allowed to take away everything I love...

Saturday, June 20, 2009

I have come to my decision!

I had a meeting with my therapist and my parents yesterday. yeah, that's always nerve wracking! We all came to the agreement that I am going to do the IOP program (plus extra therapy sessions). I have to say that I am relieved that I am not going back into inpatient - but I am really nervous because there are a lot of conditions and requirements I have to follow & achieve to stay out of inpatient. But I am determined to work my "you know what" off and really really try harder than I ever have to recover and move on with my life!

I understand and realize that I really have an enormous battle in front of me, because where I am at mentally and physically - inpatient really is the ideal place for me to be... So it's going to be rough - it's going to seem impossible - but I have an amazing therapist and treatment team, plus amazing family & friends! So, I know that I can do this! I will do this!!

Thursday, June 18, 2009

"Feel the fear and do it anyway."

My number one focus right now is following my meal plan as perfectly as I can. Gaining and stabilizing my weight is the biggest factor that will keep me out of inpatient. But... I wish it was as easy as just saying "okay, I am going to eat all this food, every single day, and be okay with gaining a ton of weight." But if I am being completely honest - that statement really scares me! But I am going to do it! I have to do it! 

I am just trying to take it one day at a time, one meal at a time... and I am trying to not think about all the food I have to eat (six times a day) and the impossible amount of weight I have to gain to get to my "goal weight." But I DO think about try to distract myself and I try to keep myself busy. I know I have a humongous obstacle in front of me, and I would be lying if I said that I wasn't completely terrified of the eating and the weight gain. But I know that with the support of my family, friends, and my treatment team -- I will be able to keep pushing forward!!! My therapist always says "Feel the fear, and do it anyway!" And that is something that is so scary for people with ed's. We feel safer and more comfortable when we numb our feelings. "Feeling" our feelings is so incredibly scary to us and something that we have tried to avoid for so long. But a huge part of recovery is learning to understand our feelings and being able to sit with our feelings and still be okay. So, that is what I am trying to do. I am trying to "feel the fear, and do it anyway." But it sure is a terrifying and unnatural thing for me.

Also, this week I have re-committed to following my meal plan 100% and my body is really really not agreeing with this! I know that I need to be patient and give my body the time it needs to accept that I am going to allow it to have food, a lot of food all day long... But I am really having severe stomach and digestive issues (and the fact that I am trying so hard to not use laxatives & diuretics is making the stomach and digestive issues SO much worse because my body has forgotten how to work properly without these things...) So, my body is kind of hating me now, and I am kind of hating my body. And it's only week one... I know it's going to get worse before it gets better, but I hope that I am strong enough mentally, emotionally, and physically to hang on until it starts to get a bit easier. Because I am really doubting myself right now.

Thursday, June 11, 2009

an update

I have been maintaining my weight for the past few weeks. That's good because it means I am not losing any weight, but it's bad because I am supposed to be gaining weight! I was feeling pretty proud of myself for being able to maintain and not lose any weight (especially considering the horrible-ness that has been my life these past few weeks) but apparantly it isn't good (or "enough") to be maintaining when you are at a dangerously low weight...ugh! Do people not realize how incredibly difficult weight gain is for me right now?!?!?

I am struggling a ton. I am not sure what I am going to do, but I need to make a decision soon. I think the plan is I am going to use the severance package my job gave me (which is a pretty decent amount) and get unemployement to help pay my rent and my bills - and take a little time off from working full time so I am able to focus 100 and a billion percent on recovery and getting healthy. The thing I am struggling with the most is deciding whether to do inpatient, or IOP, or continuing the partial IOP that I am doing now. I don't know, and everyone is giving me their opinions (and they are all different, might I add) but my therapist says that it needs to be my decision... I am super stressed because I don't know what the right decision is. And to make things even more stressful, I don't have a lot of money and health insurance to keep trying different things. My parents and I have already paid SO much money for my previous hospital, inpatient, and IOP stays that the money is kinda running out. Damn health insurances! I hate them with all of my heart and soul!!! So that's where I am at the moment.

I am also struggling with the fact that I feel very very despondent and adrift. I feel like life is going on all around me and I am just merely wandering day in and day out, not really here or there. I am struggling with the fact that I am 28 years old, still single, no job, have chronic (and all-consuming) health problems, and not sure what "I want to be when I grow up". I have had dreams and have tried to go after them, but because of my eating disorder - they have all been taken away from me. And as the years go by they have slowly been floating away. I want them back! I am just not sure I have the strength or the energy to fight for them. I am not even sure I know what they are anymore.

This is what I am currently working on with my treatment team:

w/ therapist: Trying to recapture my dreams. Find out what I love and want to do - and use that as motivation to keep fighting for recovery and a reason to get better. Work on not putting so many expectations on myself. Continuing to learn to "let go" of my past and being able to forgive myself. And making a decision about what level of treatment I am going to do (meaning IP, IOP, ect.)

w/dietician: I need to try my hardest to follow my meal plan and eat everything on it! I need to start gaining weight consistently. We are also working on body image and daily affirmations I need to be saying out loud to myself every day. I have them posted all over my room.

w/ doctor: I need to continue to eat and get my weight stabilized, keep working on trying to get my potassium levels stable, make sure I drink enough fluids to keep electrolytes and everything stable, and stay out of the e.r!

But... even though things are kinda super horrible right now. I am not giving up, I am not going to throw in the towel, I am not going to just lay down and die - I want my life back and I want so desperately to believe that I CAN have it back! That is the prayer that is in my heart all of the time, that someday this will all be behind me and I will truly be happy and be able to enjoy life again.

Monday, June 8, 2009

don't worry...i am still alive

I just wanted to send a quick THANK YOU to every single one of you who have written to me over the past week. I have been going through a lot as you all know (not just this past week, but for a bit now) and the messages made me cry -- but in a good way! I love you all so much!

I am going to update everyone on life, recovery, and ME on Wednesday, but I just wanted to write a quick hello to let everyone know that I am still alive & kicking. The only internet access I have now, since I lost my job, is when I go to my parents house which really sucks - But it's okay... I will just have LONGER posts for everyone to endure!