Recovery has always been just a term to me. Something that I never believed I’ll go through. I thought that once I’ll decide to stop, that’s it and I’ll never have any problems regarding food ever again. But past weeks into recovery, I realized how damn hard it is. And as a huge fan of music, that’s when a particular lyrics of Coldplay’s song often comes to my mind – nobody said it was easy, but no one ever said it would be this hard.
If one thing, eating disorders don’t give up so easily. You’ll be facing thoughts that the recovery is pointless, thoughts about giving up, thoughts about the worth of it all. They won’t go away, but you’ll learn to give them less and less attention. Here are few things that I think all of us had gone through when recovering from an eating disorder and some tips how to handle them easier.
In stressful situations, it’s super easy to fall back into your old habits. It’s way more challenging to keep going and stick to your commitments, resolutions, and goals when going through some tough time.
When I was in primary school and later on in high school, I used to do everything in advance, so I had plenty of time to study, do my homework and finish my projects. The feeling of responsibility, duty, and pressure kept me going and do everything ASAP to get rid of that feeling. Later on, as I switched to university, I became a terribly procrastinating person with no intention to do things on time (or do them at all) and zero responsibility. I believe that my desire to be perfect, setting up unrealistic goals and expectations lead to this, but I also believe that my eating disorder is the one that affected me to become this miserable person.
I excel at writing everything down, planning anything from how many hours to sleep to a pee time, however, I suck at actually doing it. And by suck at it, I mean it all starts and end with the planning.
Each time I’m under pressure, I get this alert voice in my head Run, run, run!!! I have this terrible urge to escape from everything, quit anything that makes me feel like this and never do things like that again. It’s so coward-like it is. But it’s understandable. Nobody wants to expose themselves to things that are so uncomfortable.
If you want to recover from any type an eating disorder, you need to accept that your body will change. Moreover, your body will change throughout your whole life. When you’re younger, it may be easier for you to lose weight. Couple years later, you may need to work twice as hard to get your desired body. If you’ve been constantly dieting and binge eating, it might be much harder to find the balance between food, cravings, and health.
It’s been a huge struggle for me to accept that I’m not that skinny (or skinny at all) as I was when I was 18. My weight was about 50kg/173cm and I looked like a tiny little boy with no boobs and no butt. I never got to the point of being happy with the way I looked as I just came from anorexia straight to binge eating and bulimia. You can imagine how terrible I felt when I met some of my ex-classmates, friends or relatives and seeing their surprised faces as they remembered me as that skinny girl that doesn’t eat. I hated myself, I started to cover my body with more and more layers of clothes and I got rid of all colorful pieces in my closet except the black ones.
Some of my closest people often made (and unfortunately still make) inappropriate hints about how I am eating, that I’m not that skinny anymore etc. For me, this is one of the toughest parts of the recovery and I will definitely talk about it in one of my articles.
Here are few things that helped me in this process.
January 1st is special for many of us. We often like to set ourselves new goals such as losing weight, training for a marathon, spending more time with family, studying more, finding a new job etc. This Christmas, it’s been for the first time in four or five years I haven’t binged. And I haven’t for some time now. I had a few pieces of Christmas cookies and I enjoyed them as a “normal” person.
For me, it means a huge thing. But I know how wobbly this thing is so I rather won’t say much yet. I am still searching for the way to eat balanced. I’m still searching for the way to workout consistently and efficiently. And I’m still searching for the way to heal my mind and to accept myself.
It’s funny that when I get upset, I think about all the things I haven’t done, haven’t finished (or began) and I feel like I’m stuck at the same spot and I haven’t moved any further. But it’s not true. I have changed so much throughout the past few weeks, months and years. And so did you, even though you might feel like you’re stuck in one place. If you feel like that, instead of writing things you haven’t done yet and would like to do in the future, write down what you have done, what you achieved and what you experienced. You might be surprised.
Let’s make this year (and not just this year) about discovering yourself. Make your health your priority. We often realize how important, vital and non-buyable it is, once we lose it. Make this year about your physical and mental health. Once these two parts of you are in balance, you can reach some pretty amazing things! Put yourself on a journey to discover yourself. Try new sports, meditate, read, travel…find yourself in this crazy wonderful world.
I’ll find myself too. And I’ll take you on this journey with me.
Cheers to the year of 2018. Let it be the best one yet.
Yesterday, I fought as much as I could to resist and not break the cycle. I got dressed up to hit that binge-store-frenzy, then I stopped and realized that’s not what I want. I’m over this, right?! Wrong. So I went back home, changed into my yoga pants and watched some YouTube videos. Then again, it hit me harder than before – You are never going to change. People don’t change. This is who you are and who you’ll be for the rest of your misery life. You will be a loser forever.