Sunday, September 7, 2014

Cornered by complacency

Hey guys—

Sorry I haven’t been around. I’ve been super busy, super stressed, and honestly…super scared and down. I stopped blogging because I felt no one was reading, but of course it was right then someone sent me a message about how honest and beautiful my writing was. I realized this blog is something I need to prioritize for me as well. Because it helps and I have missed it. So I am back and will try to write at least a few times a week. Please send any topics you want.

Now onto the topic for today because I need to get it out: complacency in recovery. What is this? It’s that point where you get comfortable. You stop being so scared and just keep on the way things are. You keep to your meal plan, throw in a fear food or two here or there, but don’t push the limits with ED like you had before. I must admit..I have become complacent…and let me tell you…it sucks. I have really come to see the truth in what my N used to tell me: if you aren’t moving forward you are moving backward…even if you are standing still. Because by being complacent…I have actually regressed and now looking back realize by not moving forward and being vigilant with my recovery ED has snuck in in tiny ways that have become my “normal” and now that I realize them…there are a lot.

It started innocently. I figured with moving states, starting grad school, and being on my own when it came to cooking and groceries and all…it would be okay to take a break from fear foods for a bit. So I did. But then that became normal, and I reverted back to my old ways of buying the same foods every week because it was easier. Then, I don’t know…I just forgot to go back to fear foods. Life got busy, and they didn’t seem as important. So fear foods weren’t faced…slip number one.

Slowly, but surely…I ended up just eating the same thing every day with only slight differences. I told myself this was fine because I was busy and it made grocery shopping easier and I would change things up as soon as I could get the chance. Or as soon as I ran out of x food or whatever. Well…I kept restocking the same foods and kept not finding the time or energy to investigate new options. Told myself it was okay because it must be what everyone does in grad school. Just eats same thing every day. Convinced myself it was normal. So diversity in my meals gone. Slip number 2.

And then they just kept coming. I stopped fighting the urges to use the food scale telling myself it made cooking easier and faster. So food scale is back to measure everything. Then when I had to switch from cycling to different forms of exercise I let exercising become a priority and freaked out about not burning enough or being intense enough. Slowly, but surely, ED was creeping in in these tiny ways. And I wasn’t even noticing. I was convinced I was still in this awesome full blown recovery because I was eating my meal plan and getting food in.

But it was all safe food. When I would notice that ED would let me face a fear food here or there. But nothing like when I was home. And my timing was horrible and I was waiting to eat later in the day. I was obsessively standing and using the food scale even for fruits again. I didn’t realize what had happened until ED started whispering to cut portions. IT all started one day when a piece of my toast was burned and I tore it off. Then it become that I had to tear my toast. Slowly other things got “burnt” or were overcooked or whatever. And so here and there a pea or two were left, or edges of crust were left….and ED creeped back in.

Over the past week I noticed it and didn’t tell anyone because no one here knows. And I also didn’t really stop it. I mean I tried…but I would get so busy and not focus on my recovery and my meal times…and end up using a behavior without thinking. It’s not like in summer when at least at my meals I really focused on making the recovery choices no matter the fear.
Well let me tell you where that has gotten me…unmotivated, depressed, overwhelmed, and feeling
defeated. The thing I thought would make recovery easier…by taking a little break from challenges…has only put me back and made true recovery harder. But the good news is I have realized with God..I can get back on track. The power is in me (more on this in a another post).

Seriously get cornered by complacency. You slowly lose your reality of recovery and slip further and further into ED, but in small ways. Even deciding to not push yourself is letting ED and fear win. And then you start to dread recovery, but now I am seeing that's only because you aren't really in recovery. So what you are dreading isn't's lying to yourself that you are in recovery. Because saying that is easier than saying you are struggling. But here I am...I am telling you all and the world I am struggling. Well WAS. Because right here, right now, I am getting back to stepping and back to moving forward and that started with writing this. So thank you all for helping me. 

I hope this helps you all too. Because I wanted to share this so people could see that complacency isn’t the answer. When ED creeps in and tells you you should take a week off of challenges. Or that life is too busy. That is the time you need to start focusing on recovery even more. Because taking a “short” break, never ends up short. And it doesn’t make you feel better or make anything easier. It just leads to tiny slips here and there.

I am also realizing at least in the beginning stages of recovery we really need to FOCUS on recovery. That will mean different things for different people. For me, right now it means making sure at meal times I focus and don’t let any portions go anywhere. Yes normal people can cook while also reading, texting, talking on phone, watching TV, etc. But for me right now those distractions distract me from the “business” at hand. That of recovery my sanity, my joy, and my life.

So it’s back to business. Back to weekly goals. And back to prioritizing recovery. Good news for you (if there are any “you” out there who care) is this also means I will prioritize blogging more. Having you all to come in and report to and to try and inspire to recover is a huge motivation for me to keep on in my recovery.

So let’s keep moving forward together. Because standing still isn’t an option. If you are standing still, the world is still moving and you are losing ground. Plus..if you are standing still in recovery…it’s easier for ED to catch you. So let’s move forward…even if by a tiny step…it’s better than no step at all. Love you all.  

1 comment:

  1. Hang in there, Jess, and keep pushing forward. You recognize how you need to change, and I'm cheering you on! Lori