I have literally been chomping at the bit to post and it seems obstacles have come at me from every direction.
First, I got terribly ill around Christmas…so much so that my doc wanted to admit me into the hospital but I talked him into letting me stay at home, take my meds and go to his office four times a day for breathing treatments. I’m finally, after over a week of coughing, hacking and blowing my nose, coming back to some sort of routine in my life.
The obstacle that pissed me off the most though, was the fact that our internet service didn’t work at home since around Christmas and we’ve had techs to our house and tried repair calls over the phone 5 or 6 times. My husband and I have been trying to scratch out messages from our phones but it’s nothing like having a full keyboard and monitor in front of you at your disposal.
So today I’m at a working computer with my box of kleenex and cough drops at the ready and I’m READY TO BLOG!
I know it sounds cliche’ to say at the beginning of a new year that you are inspired to begin anew but I really do feel that way. Anyone who has known me for very long knows that I tend to take detours from recovery, normalcy, sanity, etc…from time to time. It’s like I just have to give myself a break to begin anew (there’s that phrase again). Well, I’ve taken my break of a few months and I’m ready to get back on that recovery road!!!
As a point of reference I’m going to give a little background which a lot of you already know but it’s what my recovery is all about so I’m going to share it with you.
I was born in a little shack, no, no, no!!!
I was born 46 years ago. I was raised by fanatically religious parents to believe that I would never be good enough…good enough at or for anything. I was raised to believe I was bound for hell and that I would never be good enough to change that…although I should try to live “perfectly” every day of my life and never sin. (that’s a whole ‘nother blog)
Food, eating, self-loathing and self-degradation became a way of life for me very early on. The cycle became fierce. Eat, hate myself, eat some to comfort myself, hate myself some more, food will make it better, hate myself even more. You know the drill. During all these years I was going to therapy and never felt that anything was changing. I wasn’t “getting it”.
In January 2005, I made a visit with my hubby to his therapist and that’s when his therapist informed me I had an eating disorder known as compulsive overeating (COE) and that I needed to get treatment for it or it would only get worse. He spoke very candidly to me and told me he didn’t know of any local therapists who could help me because the ED specialists in our area focused on anorexia and bulimia. He suggested I get help online.
I went online that night and found a community that I felt would support my recovery effort and would encourage me to get the help I needed to work through some of the issues I had with food and eating. I stayed in that online community for three years and even though I came to see that their version of recovery and my version of recovery are different, I know in my heart I would not be as far along as I am now without the help of some of the wonderful people I met on that site.
So where am I in my recovery now? Well, I guess I need to define for you what I believe my recovery is. SELF ACCEPTANCE. Plain and simple. Am I recovered? No, not completely. I still have my days where the pity party comes at me with horns blowing and balloons flying that say, “poor pitiful Sas”. But am I closer to recovery now than I was in January 2005 when that therapist told me I had COE? Hell yeah!
The main thing that triggered me to blog about this has been my recent illness. I went to the doctor when I first got sick on December 23. Doctor’s visits can be such telling events in your life. That particular visit was a real eye opener to me.
I go into the doc’s office feeling like shit and coughing my fool head off and I sit in the nurse’s area while she takes my BP and temperature. Fine and fine. I even commented, “yeah, I’m the healthiest fat person I know”, because I’ve never had BP issues, cholestrol, sugar issues, etc… She weighs me and though the numbers don’t really bother me much anymore, I didn’t look at the weight. I was escorted to my exam room and waited on my doc to come in and see what my problem was. He prances in (ok, maybe prance is a bit too fluff because he was worn out from seeing so many patients but) and he looks at my chart. As he’s looking at it I’m coughing loudly and deeply and my lungs are wheezing to beat the band, he looks at me and says, “I don’t know what’s caused the cough but you need to keep it up. You’ve lost 20 pounds.” (I guess it’s been a couple of months since I’d seen him last)
WTF????? Excuse me?????? I said, “I know you think that’s funny but doesn’t it concern you in the least that I’ve lost 20 pounds without even trying?” I mean I’ve been trying to eat intuitively and listen to my body but I haven’t noticed a huge change in my eating. He gave me this long speech about how if I were already skinny or thin and had lost 20 pounds, it would concern him. But since I could stand to lose 120 more, it doesn’t concern him.
Excuse me while I get out my handy dandy soap box a moment…
YOU MEAN BECAUSE I’M FAT ALREADY THEN WEIGHT LOSS IS NOT A HEALTH ISSUE THAT MIGHT NEED TO BE ADDRESSED MORE CLOSELY! ?!?!? You mean because I’m fat already, I don’t get the same care and concern that a “normal” woman would get???? You mean because I weigh almost 300 pounds, a 20 pound unexplained weight loss doesn’t concern you????? You mean to tell me that I should REMAIN ILL FOR THE SAKE OF LOSING WEIGHT??????? DO YOU KNOW WHAT A FREAKIN’ EATING DISORDER IS????????????? You just defined it in that insane statement you just made! Stay sick to lose weight….are you kidding me??????
Ok, soap box tucked back away under the bed for now.
I will say that in some way I was elated to know that I had lost 20 pounds in such a short amount of time but it still concerns me that there really is no reason for such a weight loss. I even had thoughts like, “oooooh, 20 pounds! How did I do it? Why question it? Just accept it! Eat less and make it 30!!” You know, those disordered thoughts that come with never feeling good enough, thin enough, pretty enough, perfect enough. I even have to admit that I obsessed for a few days on the words “you lost 20 pounds”. I know there are so many in the world who would love to hear those four words.
So where am I in recovery? I’m where I can say I’m no longer obsessed about those 20 pounds. If I lost them (which I still somehow doubt and think that the doc’s scale was screwed up) then that’s great. It doesn’t change who I am, where I am, who I’m with or anything else for that matter. My recovery tells me that I’m fine just the way I am right now, at this moment in time. Change is good and if I want to change anything about me then that’s my perrogative. However, if I were to stay the way I am for the rest of my life, the earth would not spin off it’s axis and life would continue on.
And as for my ED-ignorant physician? Well, I won’t stop going to him but I won’t depend on him for ED sympathies either. That’s ok. Another thing I’ve learned about ED’s is: “ignorance is bliss”. My doc believes his stuff, I believe mine. I’m strong enough in my recovery to ignore his stupidity on such issues.
Well, there it is…my first post for the new year. I hope you guys are safe and sound and that this new year will bring you much joy and SELF ACCEPTANCE!
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