Every morning we are born again. What we do today matters most.
Every so often in eating disorder recovery I find myself at a crossroads. I can choose to keep fighting or I can choose to give in and allow the eating disorder a prominent place in my life again. Sometimes the two roads blur and I stall at the crossroads because neither route seems to be the clear path. The longer I stand at the crossroads and stall, the harder the decision becomes. I know recovery offers the freedom I so desperately want, but there is that part of me, however small, that is still afraid to completely give up the eating disorder; regardless of how much of the recovery freedom I have already experienced. In order to choose the recovery path I have to break up with the eating disordered part of my brain…repeatedly.
A few weeks ago I found myself, once again, standing at this crossroads.
After two solid months without hearing the eating disordered voice in the back of my mind or engaging at all in eating disordered behaviors, I came upon that crossroads quickly. I stalled so long that with each passing day it seemed more difficult to choose. I knew recovery was the right path, the path I have wanted all along, and I had to force myself to take the first few steps down the disordered path again. After a short time the disordered path again became comfortable, providing the emotional comfort for which I was longing, and setting me up to make it harder to get back on the recovery path.
I spent three days writing out the eating disordered thoughts, never reading them because I was afraid to look back. I was afraid I would look at the words on the page and it would awaken the recovery warrior in me. I was afraid the abusive eating disordered voice would jump off the page and snap me back into recovery. But isn’t that what I’ve wanted for so long? Recovery and the freedom it provides? While the answer was, is, and always will be a resounding, “yes!” it did not change the fact I was afraid to look at what I had written. After an additional day debating whether or not to read my own writing, I opened my journal and began to pour over all the hateful, negative, mean, and horrible things the eating disordered part of my brain told me in an attempt to regain control and go back to the eating disorder. My heart broke because I allowed myself to take those vile words as truth for several days before the recovery warrior was again awakened within me.
What helped me make the decision to turn down the recovery path this time? My husband. After putting up with the clearly eating disordered mind he got out a plate, put veggies and chicken on it (while I was arguing at him because I didn’t want it) and put it in front of me. He said he wasn’t going to let the eating disorder keep controlling me and the only way he would get his wife back was to feed her; nourishing her brain and body. I love him. He is my rock and always wants what is best for me, even when I don’t want it for myself. Not only was he taking care of me but he was being Mr. Mom to our daughter while I was being selfish in the eating disorder.
I couldn’t have married a better, more supportive man. He reminds me that my body is beautiful when I can’t see it because he sees the mother of his daughter and stretch marks that tell a story.
And you know what?
He was and is right.
My body is beautiful, my stretch marks do tell a story, as does the rest of my body.
It tells MY story.
With Body Love,