Eating Disorder Recovery · Uncategorized

Recovery Image?

There are some days when I wonder what recovery is going to look like for me. Will there be a day when it suddenly hits me that I no longer have an Eating Disorder? Or a day that I can say I am not recovering anymore because I am recovered. Will I even know it’s happening when and if it does? In my head I see it as this place that you arrive at and suddenly the pressure is gone. I’ll be able to breathe again. I can take my time without feeling like I’m rushing through life just trying to survive. I imagine how light it might feel to be heavier. How I will learn to love that I have breasts and hips and a stomach that is capable of housing a child. I see the millions of adventures that I have never dared to let myself dream of as being a possibility. I have so many hopes for what I want my life to look like afterwards…

but that terrifies me.

What if I don’t make it? What if I’m not supposed to make it? I think my doubts are what destroys me every time I try. I begin to over-think, to question, to not believe or at worst I tell myself that I don’t care. I am always preempting disaster because somehow if the worst happens then it might not hurt as much. I never realised how being so removed from myself could produce a pain just as earth shattering as what I was trying to avoid. I want the happily ever after even though I know that life is not a fairytale. Somehow I think I’m going to have to find a way to be ok with that. That acceptance is ok. That struggling in 10 years time to get through a breakfast is ok…because all that means is that I did not give up. I would love to love my body but the reality is that we have been hating each other for too long to undo that damaged relationship. Still, I need to find a way to be able to accept that I may not like something but it does not give me the right to deprive and hurt it in the way that I have been doing.

So when I think about recovery, maybe I need to draw a new image. Instead of love, I will see there is an amicable truth that can be found. Instead of dreams there are tentative hopes. Instead of hate, there is respect. I may not ever let go of the heaviness and I may also just feel like I am at best trying to survive…but surely it is better to be caught up than obliterated.

I hope your day has been good to you.

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6 thoughts on “Recovery Image?

  1. Gosh this is so similar to what is going through my mind at the moment. I am no longer caught up in the intensity of early recovery and weight gain etc. and finally have time to think. I too wonder whether I will ever be able to say ‘I am recovered’ or if this is something I will have to deal with for the rest of my life. I like to think the first will be true for the both of us! Keep going.

  2. This probably won’t make any sense but I’m going to give it a try. I “successfully” completed residential treatment twice and thought I was recovered but I wasn’t. I was however recovered and never even knew it for ten years from the time I found out I was pregnant until about 3 years ago. I didn’t even think about weight or food or anything except being engrossed with the life inside me and then the baby(ies). So I totally believe you can recover…pregnancy or not…it’s about figuring out who you are, what you love to do, and getting out of your mind.
    It didn’t terrify me and really it doesn’t terrify me now. I don’t know why I do what I do.
    But you will figure it out and let go and be free.

    1. It does make sense love. Treatment is such a small part of the recovery process and once it’s over, you still have to keep on working out how you’re going to be free from the ed. I hope that soon you will be able to experience recovered again.

  3. Recovery never really is a destination. I think it’s more of a journey where you eventually realise that the journey is not so tough as it once was, but you’re still on the tracks. I came to an acceptance that it will never be ok when I was 18, then I got really ill again. However with the right support and therapeutic help I manage to learn to be ok with my body. Some days now, even after 10 years of suffering from a eating disorders, I sometimes look in the mirror and love myself and it’s one. It’s ok to love myself. I think it is more of a mental journey in relation to self esteem. When I focused more on my other aspects within my life, studying, writing, reading, and exercising for enjoyment, I realised that my self esteem grew and alongside that my hate for my body declined.

    Having said that, even now I still struggle. I am still on that journey and i have realised that there is no end place. There is no finishing line, it is more of a continuum. For me, I had to find reasons to fight, reasons to leave my Ed behind and REALLY push myself to not relapse, to use my tricks to stay well, and to talk about nit when I was struggling so that I could use my support network. My reason was that I want to be a dietitian and that’s just not going to happen with an ed. Another is that I want to do a 10k race, which also won’t happen if I’m struggling with an ed. And to have a family that is healthy, and to be healthy form again, that is something that isn’t happening with an ed.

    I understand that it’s an addiction but for me, I had to heal parts I was trying to fix with my bulimia, and heal parts I was trying to fix with anorexia. So now when I need control and order for example, I will tidy and make charts about my life, and document everything in the wider scope of my life. Now I look back and only now do I realise just how consumed I was.

    My point is, it can be done but it is such a long journey that there is no use on focusing solely on the end goal. Take it one step at a time. It really is about baby steps and as you heal. You will look back and realise a few more steps that you took that you didn’t even realise at the time. Keep fighting. You can do it. You have to want it more than a lot of things, but it is definitely possible. X

    1. Thank you for your words. They are inspiring to hear and I love that you have days where you love yourself, because YES it is absolutely ok to love yourself. Hold on to your hopes lovely and keep fighting to those baby steps x

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