Sunday, February 23, 2014

Clean Slate, Fresh Start

Well it’s come. The day of commitment. The day to get back on my meal plan. I woke up ready to do it. Even without stepping on the scale, I just wanted to start fresh. This new motivation all started on Thursday actually after getting horrible news. As assistantship everyone told me I was guaranteed to get I ended up getting passed over for. Suddenly this dream I had held onto of grad school seemed to crumble down in front of me. Honestly, at first I was in a very very dark place.

But then I realized something. This assistantship was at a grad school I really didn’t want to go to. I had settled for this grad school because my dream grad school just seemed too much to afford and I was tired of trying to fight to make it work. So I settled. I let go of my true dream and tried to convince myself this other grad school was what I wanted. I told myself their veterinary social work program was close enough to animal assisted social work. I tried to tell myself how nice it would be to only be a state away from home. How nice it would be to go to a school with a big football team like my school does (even though I hate going to football games and usually leave after half time). I even told myself it was meant to be because their mascot was a dog like my schools. But the reality was it wasn’t my dream.

I realized Thurs night this depression and lack of motivation to recover I have had actually hit the same time I decided to turn my back on the University of Denver and instead set my sights on this other school (not saying their name out of respect). I lost my vision for my future. I lost something to care about. I basically lost myself because I was settling for a dream that wasn’t my own. So when the assistantship at the other university fell through…all the sudden Denver became an option again.

I woke up Friday more motivated than ever. Not for recovery per se, but for life in general. I woke up actually wanting to live (part of the reason I’ve been away for so long is I got in a very, very dark place where honestly…I didn’t care if I died. It’s hard to write in such a dark place). I woke up with hope again. I wrote my contact at Denver and through a bunch of tiny miracles all the sudden I found possible funding and (God-willing) a free place to live. I felt as if I was soaring.

So today I woke up with a new perspective. I spent time thinking and contemplating this morning instead of doing my daily routine of jumping on the scale. I wanted to prepare myself. Honestly because I was expecting scale to shoot up because it was horrible timing with my meals Fri. But I decided to sit in my good mood for a little bit before ED through a wrench in it.

I just felt motivated. I didn’t care when..but I felt ready to commit to plan when the time came (aka when hit the ED weight). I just had this new outlook. I could see myself at Denver. I could see myself free. I could see myself throwing the ball with my Australian Shepherd named either Faith or Hope or Phoenix. I could see myself having picnics with my fellow grad students on the lawn outside the GSSW building. I could see myself cycling, running, hiking. Living active and free. Not thinking about food and calories. Just living. Living and using my story to inspire others.

I also realized if I move to Denver I get a fresh slate. No one will know me as Jess with the eating disorder. Or Jess the underweight girl. Or just as the skeletal girl with the weird food allergies. When I go to Denver I can just be Jess. I can let people get to know the true me. Heck, I can get to know the true me. But it will mean not packing up ED with my belongings when I move out there. And the only way that is possible is to commit to recovery. To commit to the team I am blessed to have till graduation and to give it 150%. Yes…even to gain weight. Because let’s be honest. When you are 5’7.5” and weigh in the 80s…well your brain can’t help but only think about food because its starving.

So I was all motivated and happy and thought “Well I am glad I am motivated. That will come in handy if I get to start my plan tomorrow.” And I marched on to my scale. Stepped on ready for ED to deem it another horrible day and me a horrible person…when suddenly…the number was the start number I set. The number I said I had to get to to start the plan. What? Here I was motivated and I got the green light.

You know…I thought the number would make it easier too. But it wasn’t. As excited as I was I was terrified too. And ED tried to point to all the reasons my weight was down and why I couldn’t start. But thanks to the love and support of friends and family…I listened to my heart, my dream, and my God and I started.

I won’t lie. It’s been a rough day. I am lucky to have amazing friends who text me, facebook messaged me, and sent me inspiration the whole day. Friends who were there the 50,000 times I changed my mind and decided I shouldn’t add back the snack. I also have an amazing nutritionist who promptly responded that I needed to take a full rest day. No yoga, no Jillian Michaels, and no spin class I tried to convince her to let me go to.

My friends and family cheering me one :) 
It’s been rough. It’s been a fight. But I am truly proud to say I came out on top. I took a full rest day. I ate what I wanted for my exchanges instead of eating the exact same meals I have the past two days. I ate a larger bagel with a higher calorie topping. And I added back my snack. And I am actually still hungry which is weird.

It feels amazing. IT feels terrifying. It feels exciting. And it feels scary. It’s so many emotions and feelings, but honestly right now the positive are greater than the fear. It’s just nice to feel hope again.

And honestly my fear isn’t really weight gain or anything like that. I am just scared that I actually have to commit. That I have to hand over weight, calories, exchanges….all of it to my nutritionist and therapist. I am no longer allowed to decide whether my meal plan changes. If I choose to step on a scale, the numbers can’t dictate anything unless they are numbers in my nutritionist office. Kind of defeats the purpose of getting on the scale. I am scared that I won’t be able to do it. That I will fail like the times in the past. And then I am scared I will do it, and what that will look like. What will I focus on when numbers aren’t constantly swirling in my head. What will life be like truly free and happy. It’s all so scary, but honestly exciting. Wish me luck…and be looking for my posts (though this is midterms and doctor appt season galore so give me a bit).

Message me any topics you want to see or anything you all are struggling with or succeeding in J Also I am probably going to be posting more bible verses as they come up and inspire me. They may just be little blurbs instead of full on posts :) 

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