Sorry for all of the Grey’s Anatomy title pics (not really)… I love Grey’s y’all. I’m (not so) patiently counting down the days until the new season, so I need to get my excitement out in some way. 😉
I was talking to my therapist one day about how angry I was that I had gotten to this point of finally having had enough of ED’s crap to be angry about it but then also really missing it too. ED is not out of my life in any means. He has less control and I can see through his crap but he’s still here, and will be for a long time most likely, so he loves to remind me what I’m missing out on. He loves to remind me how much “easier” and “simpler” life was before recovery. I had prepared myself for how hard recovery was going to be but I had no idea it would be this exhausting.
Planning and cooking and eating 3 meals (and 2 snacks) a day is ROUGH. I never realized how much it can take out of you. I’ve been trying to make it as easy on myself as possible and it still takes about everything in me to follow my meal plan completely every day. Every Sunday, I plan my meals for the week. A lot of them are incredibly simple, both to make and to match to fit into my meal plan, and then my dietician at EDCD gave me a ton of recipes and all of the exchanges so that I didn’t have to figure them out myself. So every week, I write down every meal and what meets what I need and then I hang it on my fridge. (See below.) J I do all of the hard work before I even have to think about cooking and eating whatever I planned and it still takes everything in me to get myself to go to the kitchen and actually make my meals. I just want the food. I just want to be able to sit down and eat my food (which is something I did not think I would ever say seriously.)
I’m starting to realize that probably a big part of what makes it exhausting is that ED manages to find excuses through the entire process, surprise surprise. When it’s time for me to go cook, he tries to convince me that I don’t need it or that I’m too tired and missing one meal won’t be a big deal. When I’m cooking, he tries to convince me that I don’t need all of my starches or my fats or whatever and that eliminating them will be perfectly fine. Then, when I’m finally ready to eat, the thing that I’ve just wanted to do all along, he tries to convince me that making dinner was enough. That was the hard part and I don’t really need to eat it, it will be fine. That somehow maybe I got the nutrients I needed from just smelling the food or just being around it and handling it or some other bullshit reason that ED loves to create…and then I have to do that process 2 more times that day. (Well, just one. Shout out to EDCD for making us make our own breakfasts in treatment, I hated it there but it’s been such a lifesaver since coming home.) Still, it’s a lot.
And I know that it gets better. I know that I’m still transitioning and that this is one of the toughest parts of recovery and all of that, but honestly, that doesn’t help in the moment. ED doesn’t care that I’m still transitioning or that my team expects me to struggle like I am, because according to him I shouldn’t need to struggle. I’ve been home for 4 weeks and that is plenty of time to get adjusted, so by now I should be an expert. (I was telling my best friend about how ironic it is that ED is such a perfectionist that it’s being so perfectionistic towards the thing I’m doing to get rid of it. Oh ED and your irrationality.) So yeah, I know that it’s okay to struggle and to slip up and all of that, and I’m able to realize that later but in the moment it is so tough, and it’s getting harder and harder to fight back when ED is screaming at me through the whole ordeal, which makes me super nervous.
I know that I need to try and stay positive and use my coping skills and all of that, which I’m trying, but this crap sucks. Every move and decision I make is such a battle in my mind. I do what I’m supposed to do because I want to recover and I know that those things are what’s best for me, but my disordered thoughts are through the roof, like as bad as they were when I first got to treatment, the only difference now is that I know how to fight back to them, which just makes them fight back harder. Recovery is worth it in the end, I know that and I keep reminding myself that but it sucks. A lot. I am so exhausted and conflicted at meal times that by the time I finish, I feel like I need a nap, which, surprisingly, does not fit into my schedule. (eye-roll emoji)
So yeah, that’s where I’m at right now. It’s not the most positive or uplifting but it’s coming from authentic Melissa, which is one of my biggest reasons for recovering: to finally discover and be my true self.
So am I loving this whole recovery thing right now? Definitely not. Am I going to keep doing it? (A little begrudgingly) yes. Will it be worth it in the end? Absolutely, and I cannot wait for the day that I can look back at this whole process and be proud of how much work I did to finally get the life my authentic self deserved, even if that day is just a tiny wish in the back of my mind right now, I know it’s still there.
Remember: you can do this, no matter how much your eating disorder tells you that you can’t. The power to recover is already within you.