Tag Archives: love

A Love Letter to My Friend, Who is Suffering:

December 28, 2013

I want to tell you in writing how much I love you. I need to tell you this way, because I know you don’t believe me when I tell you in person– you can’t, your illness doesn’t let you. You told me that yourself.

You are so amazing at finding the good in other people, at finding their strengths and beauty, yet you can’t see it in yourself. You think you are worthless. I wish I could hold up a mirror in a way that would allow you to see yourself the way you see everyone else– beautiful, and perfect in their imperfections.

I want you to see yourself the way I see you. When I look at you, I see a girl who is strong, physically and mentally. I see someone who can finish workouts, homework assignments, exams, take care of friends, and lead a “normal” life all while on the verge of mental breakdown. You put up a good front. You’re a fighter. Never let them see you sweat. Or cry.

I wish I could take away some of your suffering. I wish you didn’t feel the need to take out your emotional pains by cutting into your skin or drowning them with alcohol. But I am so thankful you have let me in to this part of your life: because I understand, because I don’t judge you in the least, because I care about you and you mean so much to me. 

I don’t know why my meds have worked for me and yours haven’t worked for you. I don’t understand. Maybe you just haven’t found the right one yet. Maybe you just need a different therapist. Maybe this just isn’t the right year. Hang on, my love, hang on. I have seen the other side of this pain and it is worth the wait. The world really is amazing.

Please be careful. Please ask for help when you need it. Do it for me, or your sister, or the moon, or your younger self. Anyone. I’m here for you. I love you, and so do so many people around you.

It will get better. You know the emotional intensities pass. And I believe, truly and deeply so, that there will come a time for you as it has come for me when “good” days are not just “not-as-bad” days.

xoxo

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“Adequately Thin”

I have this “365 Days of Cats” calendar. (Yes. I have a “365 Days of Cats” calendar…)

The quotes can be weird, they can be random, but they usually do make me think.

Thursday’s quote read: “The way he treats his body, you’d think he was renting.” (R. Brault)

I really doubt it originally had anything to do with disordered eating, but the quote made me think about the way I treat my body.

In my nutrition appointment this week, my nutritionist and I were discussing how far I’ve come since the beginning of the semester. And really, I have come so far. I am much happier with my body and who I am. I exercise more, I feel stronger, I am enjoying food again, and I am allowing myself to feel pretty.

But. I do written stream-of-consciousness reflections as part of my healing process. I write for a few minutes without censoring or erasing anything. It helps me do an honest self-reflection. And sometimes things come out that you didn’t realize were there.

This week: “I feel much prettier now, more comfortable, and thinner. I feel like I am thin enough for my clothes now. I feel adequately thin.”

I am doing so much better, but there is still this insane obsession with thinness and fear of gaining weight. I am allowing myself to eat more freely and feel better about myself because I am thinner.

It is so complicated. My nutritionist and I are now working to keep my eating the same, but to shift my mental focus away from the ideal of being thin toward the ideal of being healthy.

I need to focus on being healthy— the way I treat my body, you might think I was renting. I need to take care of myself and love myself. Maybe that’s it. Maybe I like my body, but I still don’t love it.

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Self-Allowed Food Freedom

One of my food goals involves a “challenge meal” in which I basically allow myself to eat whatever I want, without planning it out in advance. This week, my challenge meal needed to involve pizza. At my last nutrition appointment, I spent a while telling a story about my friend eating pizza in the dining hall. I had wanted some so badly, but I couldn’t let myself have it. I hadn’t planned to eat pizza at that meal.

Even though I wanted it, I knew it wasn’t worth it. The sheer amount of anxiety caused by a single slice of pizza was going to ruin the entire rest of my night. It was better for me not to eat it.

Tonight was my challenge dinner. My dad was driving past my college on a business trip, and he stopped to eat with me. We went out to dinner, and I had pizza, frozen yogurt (chocolate!), and a chai tea latte. So many things that I love.

I have come out of the meal amazingly full. It is one of the first meals in way too long that I actually ate until I was completely full (and yet still not too full. Just normal.) and didn’t restrict anything about my meal.

On top of that, it was coupled with the love and support of someone who cares enough about me to stop by even for just an hour and a half. I think him being here was the reason I could do what I did without anxiety. I doubt he will ever understand how much this dinner meant to me.

I am back in my dorm now, finishing my chai tea. I am overly aware that as I finish my tea, my self-allowed food freedom is coming to an end. I’m honestly not sure how I feel about that. But, for now, I feel full and I feel happy and I will just let that soak in.Image

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I wish I could tell you how much you’ve hurt me.

What do you do when the person you normally trust with things suddenly becomes the problem? When the person you love most becomes the person you need help dealing with?

It happens over and over. For me, two of the big ones:

Breaking up with my boyfriend.
My first reaction was to call him and tell him some jerk guy broke my heart. Then I remembered that it was him.

My anorexic best friend.
I usually talk to her about everything. She knows all my secrets and I know hers. But now, just looking at her makes me feel sick. It makes me so sad and it makes me feel angry. Angry at the world, angry at her parents, angry at everyone who has ever hurt her– now they’ve hurt me, too.

Time heals. With those two, my best friend is in recovery and we’re now as close as ever before. With my ex, we don’t talk anymore, but I’m okay with that. I’ve moved on.

But how long does it take to heal? And what do you do in the meantime?

This past weekend another relationship has broken for me. To simplify a complicated situation, I spent a very long night taking care of a very drunk best friend. She is okay, but it took more out of me both physically and mentally than I had. I’ve now shut down and am trying to recover and find my life again. I’m really hurt by the way things happened, and I’m really angry.

I hate being angry with her– I still love her so much. But right now I am not okay.

I have other friends who I’m talking to. I am taking care of myself. Everything will heal in time.

How long will it take? What do I need to do? I’m an impatient person.

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