“Sometimes falling down is part of the process. That uncomfortableness is where change happens. Where we evolve. Where we turn that weakness into strength. This struggle that you’re going through is part of the process. And you will make it through.” – @nourishandeat
Week 2 started out really strong! I had a heart to heart with my favorite BHS that changed my entire perspective on treatment. Check out my blog post from back in June, “Progress over Perfection.” That explains the whole conversation in detail. Week 2 was also where I first encountered “Choose Harmony!” There’s a blog post on that one too, one of my very first posts 🙂 In week 2 I was pretty used to my new routine, including an hour of quiet time with God at 5:30 AM. I began to understand what this DBT thing was that everyone was talking about. My family came to visit and I was showered with mail. Seriously, the other residents hated me because of how much mail I got. I was able to talk to one of my professors on the phone and figure out a plan for school. Week 1 was survival, week 2 was diving into this new life.
March 5 – Day 8: 1 Week Down.
Today was a good day. And for once I actually mean it. I had a really good talk with a BHS last night. We talked about baby steps. I realized part of the pressure I was putting on myself was just from me, not everyone else. I was telling myself I had to eat 100% of my food at every meal and snack. So of course that led to discouragement because it was unrealistic. So then I felt hopeless because I could never meet my goal. We talked about how no one expects me to do that. They understand I can’t do that yet. So we lowered the expectation, then I’m more likely to accomplish it and maybe more.
My morning intent was to focus on the baby steps. I actually think I did that today. Meals were ok, groups were good, I got mail, just all good. I had 2 morning groups that were ED specific and I got a lot out of both of them.
March 6 – Day 9: You are more than what you’re feeling right now.
My 4:00 group today was Awakenings. I was a little unsure, but it was so good. We basically had free time to connect with God however. So I journaled a prayer. And I came to a lot of realizations. The biggest being that I would rather have God than my eating disorder. I feel very hopeful.
March 7 – Day 10: Live in harmony.
Today was another good day! I’ve felt pretty positive and optimistic all day. This morning was yoga! It was so good. I really want to get back into yoga when I get back to school. I missed it. I went to yoga feeling pretty relaxed, and then yoga made it even better. After yoga we went straight to lunch. I wasn’t thrilled, but I ate a burger and both sides. They were right, every time I eat, the guilt goes down. And I’m starting to feel good about it.
March 8 – Day 11: I am loved.
I had a lot of good revelations today! I started the day with about a full hour of Jesus time. That was really special. I even woke up feeling more positive.
Lunch was ok. It was just a lot of food, there was no way I could eat all of it. But I did what I could and didn’t get discouraged. There was a little guilt, but significantly less than what it has been.
I ate the whole sandwich at dinner. And I don’t really know how to feel. I should be proud, but I know I’m not. I don’t feel as guilty as I used to though.
Today I went to every meal and snack and at least had something. I’m not sure how to feel.
March 9 – Day 12: It’s okay to have a bad day.
Today was a long day.
Lunch today was mac and cheese! Yay. They gave us really big portions, but I made my commitment to not focus on portion size and just enjoy one of my favorite foods, and I did.
This afternoon words started attacking my brain and they were strong. ED brain kept telling me that I’ve gained weight and look fat. I went to the mirror. Bad choice. Definitely made me more upset. ED voice was fighting and it was so strong. I wasn’t sure if I was going to be able to eat anything. We decided to have my dinner brought down to lodge. I still was not feeling it, I was pretty upset. I sat in the kitchen while everyone else ate. I could not do it. I had both voices in my head and they were both screaming. But ED was louder. I couldn’t even open the food box. It was really tough, especially since the past few days were so good. I want to feel like the past few days, not like this.
March 10 – Day 13: Put on your game face.
Lunch was pretty good. I didn’t think I would eat much, but I ate all of it. I noticed something interesting afterwards. Usually I go straight to guilt. But this time I was fighting it. I felt conflicted. ED voice was telling me to feel guilty, but healthy me is starting to fight back.
March 11 – Day 14: Coping is not the same as healing.
I feel like I’m disappointing everyone. I just don’t think I can do it anymore. Everyone has been so supportive today, telling me how much they love me and what a good job I’m doing. And I just can’t take any of it. I’ve felt very down today. I don’t know why. I’m just overwhelmed with the thought that I can’t do this anymore. I can’t handle it. I really miss everyone. I don’t want to be here anymore. But I don’t have any other options. I’m stuck here. I’m afraid I’m not going to recover. What if I never recover? What if I disappoint everyone? I just can’t do this anymore.
Yikes. Week 2 ended just like week 1. How did that happen? It started out so great. Week 2 is a perfect model of recovery and really shows the battle between the voices in my brain. As much as we all want it to be, recovery is not a straight path. There are good days and bad days. And some days that feel like you’re starting over. That’s why it’s so important to keep going. Embrace the uncomfortable. Keep pushing through the hard days. My last words for week 1 were “I’m stuck.” My last words for week 2 were “I just can’t do this anymore.” Spoiler alert: I wasn’t stuck. I could do it. And you can too. No matter what the voice in your brain is telling you, there is a healthy voice down there waiting to rise and take over.