I have made it known in previous posts that I have low self esteem and have decided to work on it. While doing so I often reflect on the reasons why it is the way it is… so fragile and weak. It was never any question that part of the reason my self esteem is and has been so low is because of my father and his abusive tendencies during my childhood. The fact that he was so abusive was something that I had a hard time processing as I have continued to heal. It was confusing because the abuse came from a place of mental illness and not from his character. As a child and young adolescent, that was nearly impossible to understand, but yet the process of trying to started when I was about 13. Continue reading “What a Freakin’ Miracle”
I have this really strong urge to go somewhere secluded. In the mountains, maybe. Where the tree canopies and the sunsets make my shallow, habitual need for constant entertainment obsolete. I would live in a shack where the natural cross breeze would act as my air conditioning and the rays of the sun would act as my heat. If I was bored I would visit my bookshelf, full of american classics and poetry, and choose something to read for the day. Or, I would grab my camera and go for a hike. I want to be able to put my phone down and listen to whatever thoughts I’m trying to ignore every time I scroll through a news feed, or hit the play button on Netflix. Continue reading “Just a Little Quiet”
August 5th is my birthday and an official start to a new year for me. I think that out of all my years on this earth, although few, I am most grateful for this one. However, I would be lying if I didn’t say … this year was a total BITCH. Continue reading “August 5th”
When I am anxious, I listen to Jason Mraz and put on lavender lotion. When I am feeling depressed, I open the windows and read some awesome blogs. But when I am numb, there doesn’t seem to be a lot that I can do. And there is something very scary about that. For me, the sensation (or lack there of) of being numb, is the hardest part of recovery.
A defense mechanism that I have is “Checking Out.” I shut off entirely.
“Livy how was your day?”
“I don’t know.”
“Well what did you do today?”
“I don’t remember.”
I am feeling numb today. I have been feeling numb for about 2 weeks now. So today I started asking myself what it is that I am trying to block out. And then I made sure that I am not feeling numb because I am restricting (which can sometimes be a subconscious habit). After a little bit of self reflection I realized two things. 1) I am restricting again and 2) I am checking out of all of the transition in my life. I am graduating high school and moving out in three months. I am leaving the only school that I have ever attended that felt like home to me, and the only school where I was never bullied. I am about to re-enter a world (a real world) full of gossip, judgement and, dare I use the cliche word, cliques.
Will I be able to face each judgement call with civil confidence? or will I be triggered and cope by purging and restricting? Will I stay on track with my treatment, or will I become fueled by the high of hunger and decide to skip my doctors appointments, group meetings and counseling sessions. I am terrified to see what will come…. But wait, that’s good! I am feeling scared right now, and with this fear comes the absence of my numbness. This shakiness that I feel right now as I struggle to hit the right keys as I am typing, this shakiness is a gift. I am afraid for my life because I value it, because I want to keep it.
Will I be able to face each judgement call with civil confidence?
So when I am anxious I listen to Jason Mraz and put on lavender lotion. When I am depressed, I open the windows and look at some amazing blogs. And when I am numb, I will evaluate 1) are you restricting and 2) what are you trying to block out. Then I may blog about it, or journal or write a letter. But let me juts finish by saying… Lord thank you for my shaky hands.
I was looking through my old journals the other day, and it was something that proved to be really difficult. Writing is my main (healthy) form of coping and I kept pretty extensive journals throughout the most traumatic times in my life. I was thoroughly emotionally abused throughout middle school and was also bullied restlessly by the typical “mean girls”. I was un-medicated for my anxiety and depression and was starting to experiment with my eating disorder. To be completely honest, I was a very emotionally unhealthy girl in a very emotionally unhealthy situation. As one can imagine, any journal entry that was written during a time like that would show just how broken I really was. These journals document exactly where, when and how my up-hill climb to total recovery began.
After reading these journals (with the intention of looking for writing inspiration) i was thoroughly… disturbed with myself. I must have forgotten that i once had any of those thoughts, or had been in any of those situations. I then proceeded to cry a little bit about it and debate whether or not I should throw all of the journals away. I wanted to get rid of any evidence that there was of me being like that.
Amy Winehouse is one of my favorite singers, and one of the people that interests me the most (along with Maya Angelou). I feel as though me and her were “cut from the same cloth”, or that we were extremely similar people who took extremely different paths. I decided to watch her documentary when it was finally available on demand. There were things she experienced and things that she said that changed my total outlook on recovery. But, the one thing that pertains to this blog post about journaling is when she said (paraphrase) “a lot of people experience depression. But I’m lucky because I can pick up a guitar and right a song. I sing about what I know Because that is the only way to be authentic. I have an outlet.”
Writing is my outlet. During those horrible times 6 yeas ago, I wrote what I knew, I wrote of who I was. Whether I like it or not, my bullies, my abusive father, and my battle with an eating disorder are part of my beautiful authenticity. I must never wish that a part of who I am (or was) didn’t exist.
I kept the journals
A lot of us personify ED to some extent. And we might try to think that (he) is this ugly, evil being, maybe with horns, a pitch fork and a nasty grin. But, ED is smarter than to appear in such a manner. The ED that I see is a well dressed, clean cut person who looks at you with kind eyes. (He) is someone who would have diplomas, certificates, and awards hanging on the walls of (his) office so that (he) appears to know exactly what (he) is talking about. ED is someone who asks you if you would like a warm cup of tea every time you enter (his) home. If ED appeared to be this horrible and disgusting villain, then I would be more willing to get rid of (him). This is the tricky part of recovery, and the part that I feel most people don’t understand. I am trying to get rid of something that my brain thinks is wonderful.
I am all about trust right now. If I don’t trust the people who are trying to help me, or if I don’t trust in the process, then I am going to hold on to ED forever. I also have to understand that right now, I can’t trust my perspective of the situation and it is even possible that when it comes to this, I might always have to ignore my instinct.