What makes you think I’m going to make it?

Clenched jaw, headache, utter exhaustion—things that make me wonder if I’m living.

Stomach acid burning, walking: distracting. Is this forward or backward or no-ward?

You’re on mile 25 of a marathon. No I’m on mile 99 of a 100 mile never-ending race.

I feel so close but so far. I have this odd-to-me urge to totally trust and totally lean in but it’s like my body is repelling a final push with every urge to do every terrible thing. What makes you think you deserve recovery? I can’t answer.

What makes me valuable? Can’t answer. Lovable? Can’t answer.

Can’t answer.

Can’t answer.

Can’t answer.

13 thoughts on “Recovery

    1. I keep thinking I will be this new person that I don’t hate once I’m recovered. No one has ever said anything like that to me before. As in—it’s possible to be loved/valued even if I chose to give up recovery. Thanks for your thoughts.

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      1. I’ve been at this a long time and everyone is unique in their journey. Every time I recovered I became a different person. I spent lots of time hating myself. What I didn’t know is that each time I was chipping away at that. And then suddenly I realized that I rather like who I am, not who I’ve become (disabled) but who I am. There was this moment where someone said something, probably my therapist or nutritionist, and I told they were wrong, that I was a good person. It was also weird when I realized I could still be a good person and experience suicidal depression. I still think I’m a burden, useless, all that but the hole inside is no longer there. I wonder if that’s why the only aspect of anorexia I have is needing to lose weight, use my scale and precisely measure my food. Most of the rest of the behavior is gone. Perhaps I needed the rest to distract me from the horrible pain of self hate. Hmmm.
        It was the emdr therapy that made a difference.
        Never the less, I’ll not recover but I hope you are able to finally get there even if it’s a path like mine: recover, relapse, recover, etc.
        Some professionals see us, label us by where we are in the recovery process, rather than seeing us as a person who happens to be recovering. You are a person first. You are the person I support.

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      2. Every time you felt you were recovered did your team end everything with you? Like did you feel you were so recovered that you didn’t need help anymore? Did you start over with a new team when you decided to try recovery again after relapsing?

        Suicidal thoughts/depression make me feel like the absolute worst person ever. I feel like this today. I have had some moments of discovering I like parts of myself but it seems those thoughts get so quickly lost.

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      3. Liking little pieces of yourself is good! I finally had to admit I made people laugh and I liked that but stubbornly held on to hating everything else, lol. I had a therapist back when I cut, then a new one when I stopped but had to change to one who was specifically for trauma and eating disorders because the 2nd one got stuck on my not eating anything orange, ha! I’ve had the specialist on and off ever since. There was times I thought I was fully recovered but in reality I was exercising everything off happily in complete denial. I also occasionally purged but thought that because it was not often, it didn’t count. I changed nutritionists in 2017. I am now with the one who I met in the 2 ED programs I went to that year.

        If I remember, you’re in the UK? It’s different in the US. Insurance pays for the nutritionist but he’s 126 miles (~200km) drive. I pay cash for my therapist. My main insurer doesn’t understand eating disorders.

        I have a tendency toward denial. I still have difficulty accepting that all this is real despite seeing my body comp numbers, refusal to eat above a certain number and so forth. I mean, in anorexia land, I eat a lot but my therapist, if he had his way, would double it. But still, my brain plays games with me.
        It was also extraordinarily humbling to realize a lot of the horrible damage to my body was anorexia which, to me means I did it to myself. I put myself out as an example of what will happen. It’s not pretty and living in my body is hard. Thank god for crochet! 😁

        Recovery is hard, torture even, but it’s better than permanent damage. If you can do it, even if you wobble a bit, yay!!
        Oh, your question. When I thought I was recovered, I ended treatment, not them. They didn’t know I still had some behavior; if they did, they may have held me accountable to finding out why. It took a lot to get back into treatment. I loved my eating disorder, as weird as that sounds. I waiting till it was killing me. That, I don’t recommend.

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      4. I’m actually in the US, also.
        I love to be in denial, too. Some days I totally acknowledge that I have an eating disorder and some days it’s like I’ve started completely over and question everything and don’t even think I need my team anymore. It seems like I make that switch more now that my BMI and labs and basically everything is physically normal—even good—but my brain is still in eating disorder/trauma/depression land with light at the end of the tunnel.
        I don’t think it sounds weird that you love(d) your eating disorder. I so get that. I want to be in the worst of it with mine, sometimes. I feel guilty for that as it makes no sense to someone who hasn’t experienced it, I’m sure. Ugh.

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      5. It makes sense to us and our teams, that’s all that matters. If my friends, even closest friends, had any inkling of what happens in my brain, they’d run for the hills! 😂
        That’s what I like about here. It’s like, “Look, I’m not insane, someone else thinks like me!”👭👫👬👭
        My BMI has never not been normal. In the past it was actually on the higher side because of body building even when my body fat % was dangerously low. Even now, despite losing a dangerous amount of muscle mass, being sub op, my tests come up normal. That’s why I go to the nutritionist I do. He does a quick body comp test at every visit which reveals the truth. Honestly, it helps. My current status is atypical anorexia but the insides of my body are very, very bad. But then covid came along and I no longer had those numbers to force me into reality. Plus, he keeps reminding me (because I keep forgetting) that scale weight doesn’t determine malnutrition. It’s just hard to believe in malnutritioned when I’m eating food. Do you struggle with that too? He said it can take as long as a year to recover from malnutrition “after” normalized weight.
        I tried to connect him to my primary care doctor but she won’t have any of it because, you know, she knows everything! 🤨 Things she’s said: “you don’t have enough fat on your butt” “try changing your food variety” “don’t you know that losing weight makes you look older?” Oh yeah, because we have eating disorders for our good looks… what?!

        Do you have a therapist? Mine is a specialist in both trauma and EDs. Sludging through all the trauma work has helped a lot. It’s awful but, to me, it’s like ripping off the bandaid and cleaning out the infection.

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      6. I totally get all of the tricks anorexia plays with numbers and food and making it seem like you must be fine/healthy if you are at certain numbers or intaking certain foods or amounts. I’m much better at realizing tricks as tricks and not as truth now, but I still fall into traps.

        I like this space for the Non-judgmental part, too. Thanks for sharing/commenting 😊

        I do have a therapist who specializes in both as well and she is amazing. I’d be devastated if I couldn’t see her anymore. We are working through trauma and I agree; it’s so helpful but also awful at times and quite difficult.

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      7. I agree. I’m so glad you have a good therapist as well.
        It’s been such a long journey. When we do trauma, the eating disorder behavior gets worse so we stop and work on stabilizing that then go back to trauma which, of course, worsens behavior. It’s a cycle which is why it takes so long I think. But I do get trauma work done despite all this.

        I was talking to my nutritionist today (FaceTime), asking what was the point? Every week, despite all effort on my part, I keep doing exactly what I’ve always done. He said to focus on the positive. What?! What can possibly be the positive in this? He said I’m still alive. Yep, another reason I work with him, he says it like it is. He doesn’t pull his punches if it’s warranted.
        So yeah, we are alive… let’s hold on to that🤝. My goal is to stay out of the hospital. They are covid petri dishes right now. That’s a goal I can focus on. 👍


      8. The greatest thing I’ve learned is that you are a new person every day, or each time you go to an appointment, or each time you begin recovery. You know more now than you did then. So I can see a positive might also be simply that you showed up for yourself, because maybe this time, you’ll be able to gain something that will help. Maybe this time something will click, even if you’ve heard it 1000 times before. 💗

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