So I want to start this thing called freedom fridays. Usually it will be where I post my freedom foods from the week, just to share a little motivation to face new/ challenging foods or situations. Feel free to join in and I can link you on here :) Just let me know :)
So why is this first one not even what Freedom Fridays are "supposed" to be? Wish I could say it was for the sake of freedom....but that would be a lie. The reason is because my freedom food today (see previous post about what that is) kind of was an epic fail, but yet in it I got some amazing insights.
So tonight I was supposed to eat chicken fajitas with tortilla and not count them as a fat. I did great at this challenge yesterday having a cookie and curry shrimp and not counting them as a fat exchange, but today...guess my brain just freaked out. Or maybe it's because I have ALWAYS counted fajitas as a fat exchange (well...whenever I am not in treatment because there they don't let you) and also have always skimped on portions (a lovely way my ED says I'm not restricting when I am).
Well tonight I was bound and determined to get it right. In fact I woke up with my lovely perfectionism screaming loud and telling me today would be the perfect recovery day and I would see what the scale did tomorrow (another reason I should get rid of the develish machine). Well, that plan got a little messed up when I decided to sleep through my alarm causing me to rush to class causing b-fast to get pushed back three hours and thus all my meals to get pushed back. Throw in that I am on duty for work tonight and had a program I had to do that meant I only had 20 minutes to not only make, but also eat dinner...and well..things weren't going so perfect with meal timing. So when I sat down for my lovely fajita at dinner, my brain was screaming how I was gonna end up eating later tonight and that could affect scale and thus I might gain a bunch which would make me feel like restricting and then I would just be a failure....so how did I decide to cope with this.
The smart, recovery way would have said....then I probably shouldn't weigh tomorrow. Of course, when I am rushed and feeling stressed the recovery part of me doesn't talk so loud and I go to my immediate course of action...ED. So I skimped my portions like normal, but I didn't count the fajita as a fat exchange...so that's good. But all my perfectionism let me see was I skimped a little on portions (tore off some of the tortilla instead of eating it). Well that meant my weigh-in wouldn't be accurate and if I gained, then it would be even harder for me to get full portions next day. Again...easy way to counter this? Guess I shouldn't weigh tomorrow. How I countered it? My brain began telling me I needed to restrict at my snacks to ensure I didn't gain. Then numbers started flying around my head trying to figure out how much restricting was enough. Anxiety peaked. Heart raced. Mind swirled. Then I screamed (literally): "STOP!"
All went silent. I took a deep breath. In that moment I said screw it. I decided it was 8 pm and my day was starting over right there. Just like my Savior died for me and washed away the memory of my sins, I was washing away the behaviors of the day and starting fresh. Nothing to make up for, skimp for, nothing. It was a blank slate. So I just ENJOYED my full sweet snack. And I gave myself a pat on the back for doing it. Because that means my 1st food of the day was a success and so far today is a success.
So maybe my freedom food didn't go so smoothly, but look at what I learned. I learned how much my perfectionism drives my eating disorder because I want my recovery to be "perfect" and reality is it's not going to be. I learned that on stressful days I need to remember to stop and slow my mind. And I learned how to restart my day. That I have power over my mind not the other way around. I can choose to wipe my slate clean, forgive myself like my Savior forgave me, and just start fresh and new. I figure those freedoms. The freedom from my perfectionism, the freedom from spending the rest of the night trying to restrict, the freedom I will have in days to come as I use this knowledge to remind myself of ways to cope....these are better than any freedom food could be. And how did they come about....because I was imperfect. Yet another freedom..I am free to be imperfect and soak up the joys that brings.
So remember...you can restart your day at any moment. Your mistakes don't have to affect another second of your life. Dust yourself off, learn from them, and start over. Perhaps that is true recovery. Not the days we do everything right. But the days when everything is going wrong and we do the right thing. And when we mess up, but turn everything around and finish strong.
What freedoms did you find today?