Written By: B
Originally Posted: May 5, 2017
Scratching and scrambling and trying desperately to get a good grip and pull myself out of this dark and lonely place, but can't find seem to gain any ground.
I am....not great. I have been "not great" for a few months now. Every day seems to be a struggle to get through. Every morning I have to force myself to sit up and climb out of bed. Getting off the couch is as daunting as going for a 10 mile run. I spend literally every single ounce of energy I manage to dredge up on our three kids. They are all at completely different stages in their lives, and they all have significant demands that must be met all day, every day. I feel like I disappear a little more each day. I'm becoming transparent. I'm not even a real person anymore - I am merely here to ensure these three children grow to be happy, healthy, strong human beings. I cook, and there's always someone who is unhappy with the food and mealtime turns into a battle we've fought so many times before. I clean, and then someone walks into the room and dumps their bag or shoes or toys all over the floor so that it looks like a frat house the morning after a party. I ask for 5 minutes of alone time, and I get 30 seconds before the kids are fighting with each other and one of them is screaming while the other one is crying. I try to read a book, but my brain isn't able to focus enough to absorb any of the words. I try to watch TV, but I zone out and end up having to rewind multiple times just to keep up with the plot line. I think of a million crafting projects I want to do, but just can't muster the strength needed to get all of the supplies together. I keep opening apps on my phone only to forget why I wanted to use them in the first place. I think of posts I want to write all day long, but never seem to find a minute to type them up. I think about making a list of all of the things I want to write about so that I can look back on it later for inspiration, but taking a second to jot things down seems like an insurmountable task.
This is depression.
I just CAN'T. I can't think, I can't do, I can't feel.
No, I don't want to talk about it. Yes, my therapist is aware of all of the issues going on. No, my antidepressants don't seem to be working even though we have me on the maximum dosage. No, I don't need any suggestions as to how I can feel better.
I know that I should take some time to myself and get out of the house without any kids. I can never seem to find a good time to do it, and if I ever get any time without children I usually opt to take a nap because getting dressed and driving somewhere seems like a monumental task.
I know that I need to get better with my eating and stop the ED behaviors that have come back so viciously over this past winter. Please stop suggesting I eat snacks every few hours throughout the day. Please stop telling me that I need to get it together because the kids need me. Please stop telling me that I already went to treatment and now is not a good time for me to be sick. Please stop saying that "there is always something going on" with me.
I cannot "try harder" to feel better. It doesn't work like that. Not even close. Don't you think I would be doing that if I could?? Who on earth would choose to feel like this? Like a zombie. I'm just shuffling around trying to come off as put together and strong and fine. I'm not a very good actor, but I try anyway.
Being home with the kids all the time is harder than I ever thought it would be. I definitely knew it would be hard. It is just way more difficult than it looks when you are watching someone else do it. Sometimes it feels like there are 100 hours in a day. I often have 2 kids screaming at the same time, and have to figure out how to monitor the 3 year-old in his timeout while he is melting down but at the same time not be in the room because his shrieks are scaring his baby sister. I literally can't hear anything over the insane amount of noise.
I know this won't last forever.
I understand how life works. I am good at reminding myself that the bad times always come to an end eventually. This will stop. I will feel better. I will make it through.
For now, I am just tired.
Please be kind to strangers. You have no idea what kind of struggles they may be facing.
Hang in there.
Written By: Ryan
Originally Posted: April 15, 2017
It wasn't supposed to be like this.
Seriously? Bitch disappears for almost two months then comes back with this emo shit? OK fine, dear snowflake child—do enlighten us! What, pray tell, was not supposed to be like this?
Uh, hello! This wasn't supposed to be like this! THIS! Right here! It's happening all wrong!
There's a whole lot that could fall under stuff-that-didn't-turn-out-as-expected (the universe has a great sense of humor) but don't worry--this won't be one of those this isn't where I thought I'd be self-pitying tales of woe because 1. I totally missed the memo on how all young girls are supposed to start fantasizing about what their weddings lives should be like at this age so I don't waste time feeling inadequate according to arbitrary societal rules and 2. After fighting overcoming my fair share of shitstorms unexpected challenges, radical acceptance is a good friend.
What I mean is this post wasn't supposed to end up this way.
For one, I was supposed to write this over a month ago but my, how things have changed. End of February/beginning of March was Eating Disorders Awareness Week and as someone who's become really open about ED recovery after many years of hiding, it would make sense for me to write something about it. I mean, I did last year. A few people even asked what I had planned for this glorious week of awareness and the thing is, I did have something planned, and I was going to call it ... BEFORE AND AFTER. (The more things change the more they stay the same?) I got the idea from the ED forum (contact me if interested) when several people said they actually dread this week because of all the "before and after" photos. Many sites don't understand the implications of posting survivors' stories with photos from "before" (when very sick) and "after" recovery, when much happier and healthier. The general takeaway is people with eating disorders are emaciated white girls who find happiness and fulfillment after weight restoration. There are many problems with this skewed portrayal of the deadliest mental-yet-very-physical disorder, some being that both men and women of all ages and ethnic backgrounds can have eating disorders, and the way someone looks is no indication of neither presence nor absence of illness.
Kind of silly, don't you think? Going on about how you're not supposed to say, "But you don't look like you have an eating disorder?" because that invalidates the condition and often fools people into thinking, "Well maybe it's not thatbad if my doctor says I look fine ... " (yes, real medical professionals say this kind of shit smdh) and thus perpetuates the illness. We need early earlier intervention because most of the time a person has to get so fucking sick--often on the verge of dying--before considering professional help. Like, say, I dunno, someone's body begins shutting down and ends up in the ER with a mini stroke and finally agrees to residential treatment. How long would you wait around to get help for a broken leg? Though EDs are the "mental" illness with indisputably most physical ramifications, they're still amental illness which means you can't tell by looking at someone from the outside. Not all sufferers are textbook skeletal just like not all who are weight restored are officially "all set" with ED, falling on the "after" side of the recovery spectrum.
That said, it makes absolutely zero sense to portray recovery via before-and-after photos. I mean, doesn't that actually sound really counterproductive? It's not about how you look, but look at these! No. And on a much darker side of the whole thing (as if this could get any trickier) looking at certain images could actually be very triggering, whether it's your own "before" pictures or someone else's. It's possible to wholeheartedly want recovery more than anything else in the world but still struggle with what that has to mean physically, though that anxiety does not mean secretly wanting to stay sick.
So yeah, it was supposed to read something like that. But I couldn't bring myself to write it ... I dunno, just didn't feelright. Of course I think it's an extremely important message to share but honestly, I wasn't sure I was in any mindset to be sharing any ED recovery messages and it took me another week or two to come to grips with the underlying reason. Turns out when your whole modus operandi is complete authenticity in every facet of life, preaching about recovery when questioning (but of course avoiding actually thinking about) your own proves extremely uncomfortable. And so you go and distract yourself with other stuff because that's way easier than trying to process difficult topics, yay! Even stopped journaling for a while because I have to study for the GRE I have an event work is very busy I'm too tired I'm really into this book I didn't want to think about it. I didn't want to deal with unpleasant emotions even though I can now accept they're part of being.
I've been pretty hypocritical, but not all is lost. Let's travel though the labyrinth of the past two months and steer our way to redemption! (This is mostly to make me feel better. But you'll do that for me, won't you?)
If you don't experience anything like this yourself (and I hope you don't) you might not understand the "claims" that something wicked could be happening to a person without their knowledge. Wait, what? It's happening to you, right? Like, you're the one doing it? So it's like, your decision? How could you possibly not know, then?
Can the mind really be that deceitful and manipulative?
Yes. Yes it can.
And this doesn't just go for those officially diagnosed with a mental afflication, either (1 in 5 people currently struggle with mental illness) ... This goes for EVERYONE. Our brains are largely set up to function on autopilot and the darn buggers (don't know where that came from) automatically process most of the world by themselves, only letting a few tidbits fall into our conscious awareness. Like you probably didn't know you got takeout for dinner instead of cooking because of that Chili's billboard you didn't even consciously realize you saw that morning, did you? DID YOU?
So yeah, I guess you could say the mind is pretty damn powerful.
Back to me.
For several weeks from February into March, I wasn't doing awesome. At first the behaviors resurfaced without my conscious knowledge even though deep down I knew something was up. Sometime in the middle of March, I forced myself to face the truth of what's happening so I can start making moves to get back on track.
I was not pleased. In the least.
First of all, what the fuck? How are distorted thoughts and actions from before creeping into now? You hear me? This is NOW, as in, after treatment! I talk about recovery! I want full recovery! I was doing it! But this isn't recovery? Why am I failing??
You know what, though? This is recovery. This is what it looks like because there really is no "before and after" ... to anything. Nothing is permanent; shit happens all the time and all we can do is our best to navigate the waves. Opinions change, technology advances, kings fall, amendments amended, planets added, marriages end, humans evolve (#ScienceIsReal). And sometimes things go the opposite way from what we had planned. Isn't there a joke about it? Know how to make God laugh? Tell Him your plans.
Of all things, eating disorder recovery does not follow a straight "before and after" path. Of all people, I should know this. But I do know this, and you can bet your pretty little bottom if it had been someone else coming at me with this predicament I would've said all sorts of encouraging stuff, like "Don't be so hard on yourself! You are not a failure!Remember how there's no direct shot to recovery and it goes in zigzags and to the left then forward then circles around and to the right and all that stuff? This is supposed to be happen! You silently struggled with this thing for 12 YEARSbefore acknowledging illness, how can you expect to be completely better in this short time? You have to give yourself a break, plus you're not alone. Mental fitness as a whole isn't doing so hot this year, with the American Psychological Association reporting the first statistically significant increase of stress in the last 10 years (thanks, Trump). Between the uncertainty and anxiety from current events plus a ridiculously overwhelming workload, it's really not that surprising this shit's crept back in a little bit. This is how you've conditioned yourself to cope with hardship for a very long time. What's important is your self awareness! So what if it took you some weeks to be real with yourself? What matters is you've acknowledged it to yourself and started asking for support and that's a huge part of the battle! I mean, you can't really fight the battle if you don't think there even is a battle happening, am I right? Plus one month is way shorter than 12 years, AM I RIGHT?"
Damn, I'm a pretty good friend to people who aren't me.
And that's where I was being hypocritical. Maybe "hypocritical" isn't the right word but I think we can agree I could work on being nicer to myself. You know, practice some of that self love, care and compassion I believe so strongly for everyone else. Why is it so easy to tell others to put themselves first, to prioritize declining health over nearly impossible work demands, because without our health we're no good to anyone?
Why has this been so hard to accept even though I've already been told all of these things before and have since repeatedly announced it to others? Aren't all of these questions from before?
Well buddy, it's because things change, both internally and externally. You can get a Donald Trump after a Barack Obama. You can struggle a bit with previous challenges. But the cool part is once you get woke, you can fix it. Instead of being down on myself I should be proud that I was the one to shake myself out of what I know is a very slippery slope. At this point I know too much about this illness to let it get me for too long.
Didn't the Greek philosopher Heraclitus say the only constant is change? And how you can't step into the same river twice, or something like that? Shit happens and minds waver and that's when you take pause, focus on now, get some perspective and reroute yourself. At least you know every fight brings progress.
I know what I need to do.
I'm doing it.
Written by: Mama B
Originally posted: 12/14/2015
Disclaimer: I am going to start this blog with a new format because everything is about to turn upside down and sideways. (I won't make you read it that way, though.) Also, please excuse any typos or any jokes or things that don't make sense. My brain twists things up now without my permission and I tend to come off looking a bit stupid. I'm not stupid, just having a "flare up."
Exactly 15 days ago, on November 30, 2015 I noticed an annoying and slightly-painful tingling feeling in both of my feet. I didn't pay too much attention to it because I was concentrating on a million other things. We are trying to sell our house and move to New Hampshire. Only 15 days ago, we were kind of under contract with my dream house and needed to sell our home down here within 7 days to solidify(is that the right word??*) that contract and move forward with our plan to go north and start the next chapter of our lives. I'm not saying we won't be doing that. I'm just saying that the next chapter is going to BLOW YOUR FUCKING MINDS. (Well...all right maybe not. It blew, mine though.) Each day that annoying pain moved up the pain scale. It went to fire-like pain in the feet. And then added shooting pain. Then added random electrical shocks. Add muscle spasms. Add metal bars being hammered through joints. And the GRAND FINALE 4TH OF JULY FIREWORKS STYLE...............ZEUS THROWING LIGHTNING BOLTS IN QUICK SUCCESSION! No Boston Pops playing in the background. Only my screams....
Okay, enough with the drama. It really does hurt that bad, though.
I spent 5 days on med surg floor swallowing Dilaudid and half being worked up by a neurologist/half being looked at suspiciously/skeptically by a lot of staff thinking I was there for the meds/attention/etc. Awesome. The Dilaudid didn't even do anything you dipshits (you guys weren't really dipshits - most of you were really REALLY sweet and I really appreciate all you did!). Almost nothing at least. I tried to not take it and found that it was more miserable to not take anything, so I asked to be put back on . Screw you for your judgement. You weren't the ones with the brains on fire.
I'm done. I'm really not an asshole. I'm just in limbo right now. I'm sitting at home - they discharged me with nothing but Neurontin 300mg BID (helps with neuropathy: i.e. nerve pain) and Inderal 20mg BID (I can only convince myself to take 10mg BID at most because my BP has been running so low anyway in the past few months since quitting drinking.) The prescribing doctor not only knew this, I called her after I was discharged and again voiced my concerns about the choice of drug. She said I could just take one pill instead of the two. Le Sigh. Okay. Moving on.
So here I sit, my muscle twitches have finally slowed down a little bit and I no longer feel like I am tied to a stake. But my skin is so insanely sensitive and my legs are feeling a bunch of different painful sensations at once. I am quite tired, my thoughts are going quickly and are jumbled, and I can't form a straight thought when I really want to. It gets stuck somewhere on the way out. Luckily, my husband has gotten used to this because of the first time this symptom appeared this summer when I was overwhelmed after coming home from residential. (That flare up makes so much sense now....) Instead of just stopping and waving my hands and staring at him while he helplessly stares back, I continue to try to talk, using other words to describe the word I am looking for. Most of the time he gets it. It isn't ideal, but it helps out a lot with communication. (Quick shout out to all of my girls from resi who made us play Heads up every night during snack time and taught me phrases such as, "the grass is getting shorter!" to describe a lawnmower....and "I stand up and I'm funny!" to describe a stand up comedian.) And communication is so important when you are dealing with this monster. I should know. I've been doing it for, like, 6 days.
Hah! Ah, Feck.
I don't even know if I'm going to post this. I'm just writing to get all of this out of my head. It's so full that I have no where to put any new thoughts. For right now I'm going to lay on the couch because my hands are too shaky to continue and I forget where I was going with any of this. You can't write a good blog if you forget what the hell it was supposed to be about.
That's all for now.
Addendum: No, we do not have a definitive diagnosis yet. We are running a battery of tests and ruling a ton of things out. Which should be awesome, right? Except I still have all of these shitty symptoms and I just want to know what the fuck is going on so I can be medicated correctly and know what the FUCK I am up against. Okay, I really am done now. With this entry, at least.
Just kidding! One more thing....Here's the list of everything we have ruled out, just so I can stop the barrage of e-mails of suggestions as to what it may be (Thank you for thinking of answers for me though!):
It is not......
Now I'm really done. Yay!
Original post can be found on www.randomfrequents.com
Written by: Ryan K
Originally posted: 12/17/2015
Actors, musicians and athletes are some of the most admired with some people going as far as calling them heroes. I used to feel envious whenever I watched an unbelievable game or live performance, and wonder why I wasn't granted such talent. But that's the thing; much of their success relies on innate abilities. Not saying it doesn't take hard work to hone your craft—whatever it is—but my perspective on the kind of achievement I deem admirable has changed. A lot.
In the spirit of #tbt, let’s go back to getting painfully real about struggling (ugh, this is gonna hurt), when the only five people who read this were me and a few people in India. Not really sure how that happened, but hi!
Last night, I fell down. After making so many sacrifices over this holiday season to put my recovery first, I fell.The holidays are known for being a stressful time of year, but for some of us … Oooh boy. It’s a doozie. Don’t get me wrong, I’m super pumped that Jesus was born, but the circus that this time of year has become is really fucking tough.For one, there is food. Everywhere. All different types of food. I’m sure some of you who don’t get it are all, SMDH and rolling your eyes or whatever it is skeptics do, but let me assure you – this isn’t a cute little first-world problem simply based on the desire to be thin. Nobody chooses to have a crippling fear of what “normal” people enjoy. Nobody chooses to be consumed in anxiety for days leading up to a party – something that’s supposed to be fun. You may scoff at this now, but you probably have no idea if someone has enviously watched you enjoy the hors d'oeuvres and wish she or he could do the same. It’s simply not a silly phase that ends when you “snap out of it” and “just eat” and it’s vital for EVERYONE to be educated so we can get some proper mental health care in this country. Yes, everyone, whether you think this is relevant to your life or not. Spoiler alert: It is.
How about I see your eating disorder and raise you his buddy booze. Alcohol is absolutely rampant this time of year and excessive drinking is very much strongly encouraged. O Holy Night, the wine is freely flowing. I was a part of the madness for many years, oftentimes being the life of the party. With some help, I finally accept that drinking knocks ED recovery off the list of priorities and tends to start an extremely self-destructive cycle of self-loathe, numbness, rinse, repeat.
So not ideal.
Every day I battle these demons in my head. Sometimes it feels so loud up there I want to scream. Food and drink are major in-your-face parts of the holidays and I fight every day to navigate this endless maze. I skipped both of my company’s holiday parties—including the one last night--in order to stay on track. This wasn't easy because these were some of my favorite nights … Who doesn’t love feeling warm and fuzzy while brushing shoulders with the senior executives? But, no. I’ve put in so much work already and I know what I need to do.
I ended up going home and drinking a shitload of wine.
Today was hard. I was disappointed and ashamed but also really pissed. So I missed out on the party but ended up drinking anyway? What a moron. Why can’t I just be normal? Why can’t I just be a normal 30-year-old person who goes to the holiday party like a normal person and just have fun and then joke about the dumb shit people did and then life goes on? I felt like I had been grounded, but for the rest of my life. I tried hard to practice some of that good ‘ol self-compassion I like to talk about but it’s so much easier to believe others deserve it and not yourself.
But here’s the thing. Everyone is dealt different cards and it’s completely counterproductive to compare yourself to others. Just gotta do your best to make the most of what you’ve got. I know this, but I forgot for a little while. My heroes are the people who fight every day for recovery. The ones who face life’s usual challenges while fighting their own war every minute of every day. People may look down on people with “mental illness” and view them as weak or broken, but you have no idea how much strength is required to face these excruciating obstacles. Spoiler alert: It’s a fucking lot. People say we are only given what we are able to handle, and maybe the joke’s on everyone else because they wouldn’t be able to jump through these hoops with the same grace, courage and resilience as the amazing people I’ve met through this journey. So yeah, I fell, but I’m still strong. I didn't break.
I fell but watch me get the fuck back up again.
original blog can be found at www.ryandoesresi.com
Written by: Momma B
Originally posted: 11/7/2015
What do you see when you see food?
I was sitting in my living room the other day, fighting with myself yet again over whether or not I was going to eat a snack and my mind wandered off to that oh-so-familiar place where I begin to wonder how many OTHER people are in this situation right now? And then of course I think of how many other people are NOT in this situation right now and the gears keep turning right to, "well, how is it so easy for THEM to eat a snack??" It literally baffles me.
(Let me explain so that those of you who do not know ED will understand.)
This is how I imagine someone without an ED going to get a snack:
This is how it goes when I try to have a snack:
I'm sorry if this is entirely off base, I'm just a little cranky over here because I'm eating a fucking rotten banana. (And for those of you who are wondering why if I am getting better, I cannot just go and get a donut for snack yet...it is because that particular neural pathway hasn't been fixed. When I see a donut, I still automatically want to eat the whole donut factory. It doesn't have to do with food. It doesn't have to do with feeling hungry. It doesn't have to do with my body needing fuel. It has to do with the fact that my brain has all of these screwed up connections in the wrong places and I have to figure out how to rewire it. It's a very complicated job AND SOMETIMES IT MAKES ME WANT TO RIP ALL OF MY HAIR OUT!!! (.......Mindfully.)
That's me for the next few years in recovery. :)
Original post can be found at www.randomfrequents.com.
Written by: Momma B
Originally posted: 11/4/2015
I really like that saying "God never gives you more than you can handle."
Let me just quick point out that I am not a deeply religious person - I have no religious affiliations, and my beliefs are mine alone. I do not get into discussions involving religion and never will. It's a personal thing that is between me and absolutely NONE of you. So there.
This summer I could not handle anything. Clearly. I couldn't even get out of bed on my own. I had people coming to shake my shoulder and say things like "Bethany....if you don't get up now you won't have time for a shower!" Seriously. I had gone from a 32 year-old mother to a 12 year old kid in less than a 24 hour time span. (I paid for the fancy express ticket to my rock bottom.)
Fast forward though 8 weeks of residential where I made lots of arts and crafts with glitter and paint, 4 weeks of partial where I spent my days folding origami and participating in groups while trying to learn to regulate my intake of food. Also to see food as.....food? I don't know....like normal people see it? I don't think I will ever know how that is. Something in my brain is messed up with that recognition. Hopefully through CBT and DBT one day I will see food or hear about it and not have my first thought be to either shove it all in my face or to run away in fear. Those are my two automatic reactions. That's just how the grooves in my brain have been digging themselves deeper for over half of my life.
Not trying to go off on a tangent. Refocusing.
So, yes. I was cleared to go back to work a week ago. I had all of my appointments with my doctors and everyone said my labs were good, and I had a good head on my shoulders, and although I am obviously not 100% PERFECT (Pssshhhaw! Which one of you judgy people is?!) I may resume earning income for my household.
- Insert my husband crying tears of joy here. -
So, just like that I was whole again! As soon as the paperwork got into the hands of our HR department I started to get a little tickle of anxiety. Just a little niggle of the "wait, am I really ready to go back? What if I can't deal with the whole real being a grown-up and adulting yet??"
Don't ever ask yourself that question.
My son had a little runny nose the other day. He wasn't even complaining about it. No cough, no sneeze. Just a little snot. I almost thought I was imagining things. I put him to bed one night and then......BANG! The next morning he decided to learn how to climb out of his crib at 22 months old and ALSO to have his "little snot trickle" turn into a full-fledged god-awful category 5 head cold. Begin 36 straight hours of a screaming toddler, mucus and throw up (sorry for that trigger), fevers, zero sleep (but for some fitful 5-minute naps on a twin mattress thrown on the floor of his room at 2am.) No real schedules. Just zombie baby with mucus and tears and his insatiable need for mom snuggles.
Who would have guessed that I had more than enough to give to him?
I took care of him just fine. I shouldn't have doubted myself for a second. If this was back in June, my husband would have been on his own. My body physically wouldn't have been able to keep up with our son's demands. I literally #crushedit this time. I literally laid on that floor with his toe up my nose and him whimpering in his fever-dreams and I swore like a sailor in my head and I counted down the minutes until sunrise and I held it together like a mother fucking BOSS.
Because I am B.
And that's just what I do.
Original post can be found at www.randomfrequents.com.
Written by: Ryan K
Originally posted: 11/3/2015
Son of a bitch.
You may have noticed a few recurring themes throughout my documented journey, two of which are the rhetorical"WHY ME?!" and several mentions of being sad about a boy which was somewhat the "final nail in the coffin," so to speak. Or whatever that phrase is? Hit the nail on the coffin's head? I don't know. I also say "the eagle has left the building" so we'll do what we can.
Clarification time! First of all, this person is absolutely not why I have an eating disorder nor why I went to treatment. No doubt this contributed to what ultimately transpired, but was in no way responsible. The truth is, many factors—over a long period of time—played into why I have an eating disorder, and last summer was simply the "straw that broke the camel's back" (MAKE IT STOP) after many years of maladaptive behaviors and complete inability to properly and productively handle not-so-stellar situations.
So now that we've gotten that far, how did I get an ED? Took me long enough to finally accept it, would be nice to know what exactly happened so I can analyze and dissect and overthink and wonder "What if ... ?" ... because that sounds spectacular, am I right?
Unfortunately, there is no way to know for sure, which can be quite unsettling. I'm a Taurus/Aries cuspian but primarily a Taurus which means I dig logic. Give me the data, facts and concrete info so I can make an educated and data-based decision. I NEED ANSWERS. Give me the answers!
Despite research studies and all that jazz, there is no way to know exactly how one develops an eating disorder. Some people are able to look back and chronicle times that may have played a part, but we're really just hanging out in the gray area. Others can't legitimately pinpoint when or why their ED could've come about, and this causes a lot of frustration. How am I supposed to fix the problem if I don't know how it got there?
Everyone has different ways of dealing with this, but radical acceptance is big for me. I'm never going to find out why I got stuck with this nonsense when most people around me seem fine, so might as well just take it and move forward. And try to help others in the process.
According to research, a bunch of shit can go into getting an eating disorder. We're talking genetics, brain chemistry, cultural norms, difficult interpersonal events (e.g. divorce, bullying, physical abuse, etc.), big life transitions, environment, feeling inadequate, addiction, perfectionism ... And that's not even all.
Alright, so that's cool, we have some ideas of what MIGHT develop an ED, but we're just gonna have to live with never fully knowing. Something EDs are NOT all about—contrary to very popular belief--is food. Sure, food is involved, but a detrimental misconception is people with eating disorders are selfish and/or vain. That is simply not true. Worrying about body image and all of that can play a role (more so in the beginning stages, from my experience) but eating disorders are so much more complex than simply not wanting to eat. And please, don't ever tell someone struggling with this mental illness to just eat like a normal person. Wow, really? It's that simple? Thanks! I'm all better now! Eating disorder treatment is a very lucrative industry and wouldn't exist if people could just snap out of it. But TRUST, I wish we all could.
In sum, I don't know why I have an eating disorder. I have some ideas, but can't tell for sure. Despite not having the answers, I'm just gonna honor this struggle as a part of my life and another challenge to overcome.
Ed, I don't know who let you in, but I'm going to show you the way out. Motherfucker.
On that note, dinnertime.
Original post can be found at www.ryandoesresi.com.
Written by: Ryan K
Originally posted: 11/3/2015
So excited to announce a new featured series: ED-Q&A. I often speak of the incredible people I've met in treatment, both at Walden and CEDC, and think it would be really enlightening to get some different perspectives. Remember that eating disorders are like snowflakes; no two are the same. Though all of us may share this struggle, we are alsomuch more than simply disordered. We all have real lives and real non-ED challenges ... But also real interests, skills, hobbies, children, careers, relationships, etc.
I am going to start a series where I sit down with someone I believe will offer an interesting and unique story and share what I've learned. In breaking down the stigma of eating disorders and mental illness in general, it's only right to include a variety of views so we can all learn even more.
Look out for the following –
Really looking forward to chatting with these awesome folks and getting their story out. Stay tuned!
Original post can be found at www.ryandoesresi.com.
Written by: Ryan K
Originally posted: 10/22/2015
It's no secret I do a lot of shit your typical 30-year-old woman "shouldn't" do, like wear Hello Kitty pajamas (for irony ... yeah), quote Harry Potter on a daily basis, dress as Darth Vader for Halloween, drink out of an X-Men mug, eat baby food (apple sauce is totes baby food), sleep with a blankie I've had since I was born (I will have no secrets left by the end of the year) ... And this was all in the past week. Looks like we can tack on celebrating six months of life to the list.
Before you worry that I've really lost it, I would like to take this opportunity to explain. When I turned 30 in April, I wasn't doing so great. I had lofty goals of having some sort of big-deal extravaganza since I hadn't celebrated in so many years (THANKS ED), but that didn't quite work out as planned. Instead, I fell into a relapse that ultimately pushed me into residential care.
Well, guess what? Six months may not normally be anything to commemorate, but these six months are different. I've talked about everything I accomplished in resi, partial and TLH (need to make a glossary) to save my life from the eating disorder, but now I'll share a few lessons that have helped better the other parts of my life.
OK maybe let's not think about that just yet.
The original post can be found at www.ryandoesresi.com.
Written by: Momma B
Originally posted: 10/24/2015
Yes, this is another post about my eating disorder.
Oh, I'm sorry. (No, I'm not.) Are you sick of hearing about me talk about ED? Are you sitting there like, "Jesus....doesn't she have ANYTHING ELSE going on in her life right now?? Why can't she stop focusing on this one thing??"
FIRST OF ALL....
I have to focus on this one "thing" because if I don't focus on it then it will spiral completely out of control again! I would rather not spend another entire season in a treatment center #thankyouverymuch. I am doing my best to keep moving in the right direction towards recovery. It is not easy. In fact, it is pretty much near impossible to do it without any slip-ups.
Here is my metaphor for this post!
Imagine being on a wild horse drawn carriage ride that is barreling down the bumpiest road, full of potholes and bumps, where you keep getting thrown out of the damn wagon and you keep jumping back in and trying to hold on for dear life. The best you can hope for is that you are heading in the right direction, but as you are really just trying not to die, you have no idea which direction you are actually heading in or what the hell is going on or what the hell you are supposed to be doing or how to get the damn horses under control and to find a road that is actually straight and paved and jesus how long is it going to take to get to the end and is there an end and OMG HOW LONG IS THIS GOING TO TAKE DON'T HORSES HAVE TO STOP AT SOME POINT I CAN'T HOLD ON MUCH LONGER!!!!!!!!
That, my friends, is recovery.
So. My life is all about focusing on that. My free time revolves around thinking about it, talking about it, making websites devoted to it. I have to keep it front and center in my mind so that I can remind myself that THIS is what is the most important goal right now. I need to remember to continue to work towards this goal every single day in order to live the life I want to live, to be the mom and wife I want to be.
My personal road to recovery has had so many ups and downs I never bothered to keep track. I literally take one moment at a time. I try to collect my "happys." I am mindful of all of the good things that I accomplish throughout the day. I have learned to accept any setbacks and to let them go and move on. I used to do the opposite. I'd throw away the happys, invalidating them because of my lack of self-worth. I'd collect my failures - it didn't matter how minuscule, and I'd keep them forever. I stored them up and used them over and over again as ammunition for my ED. I hated myself. ED hated me. It's easy to hate yourself when you've got a lifetime of failures in a filing cabinet in your head that you can call upon in a split second.
The game changed this summer when I flipped the tables on that bastard. I threw out that old jar of failures and now I keep the happys. Let me tell you, I like life a LOT better through this filter. I no longer spend all day every day berating myself. I smile and I mean it. I try to share my sunshine with others who are struggling because I actually have extra to spare these days.
So I'm going to keep my recovery at the front of my mind because that is what is working for me. If you don't want to deal with that, keep walking. This is me and this is what I am dealing with right now.
Stay well, my friends!
Original post can be found at www.randomfrequents.com.