Thursday, March 10, 2011

long time no see

I've missed all of you sooo much. I promise, I've been reading everyone's blogs in my absence, just been too lazy to write myself.
Okay, lazy is the wrong word.
I have been through a LOT in the past months. And given the place I was in - it was honestly easier for me to not write about it. Time for some honesty though.

In the months leading up to 2011, I was really struggling with depression. I was doing fine with my anorexia, for the most part. But there were times when I would obsess over how much I should be eating - two tablespoons of peanut butter? Or do I just need one? I didn't do X today so maybe just one? And then I would spiral out from there. I felt so out of control when these thoughts would enter my mind. I felt like I would never be free from my ED. I believe this was all brought on by the sheer amount of stress and guilt being dumped on me by a certain boy whom I'd parted ways with. Regardless, I was not in the best place emotionally. And so, I tried to escape this through various means.
By January, I was feeling a lot better though still not 100%. I was dating someone new, going out and actually being social. It almost seemed like I was getting to be me again. Took me awhile, but I was getting there.

And then I was dumped. Via text message. While I was taking a nap before work.
My ego was bruised. I was hurt. I didn't understand what happened. But for some reason, after a few days or weeks - I'm not sure of the time frame - it actually snapped me out of my funk. I stopped letting the words that echoed in my mind have power over me. I stopped worrying about whether or not I'd ever be free from my ED. I stopped trying to escape my life and started facing it. And finally saw things more rationally than I had in awhile. I made friends. I did karaoke with the girls, I went to the casino with my gym buddies. I started living a life that was finally, whole heartedly, entirely MINE. Something that I realized, I hadn't done in YEARS. Because when I started dating a certain boy in 2009, just after really getting a foothold in recovery, he tried to control my life. He would tell me how sick I still was with AN, how no one else would put up with me, how horrible a person I was because I didn't do every thing he asked me to do. And for some stupid reason - it sunk in and on some level, I believed him. And even after we broke up - he used the guilt and hurt and grief to keep me from being able to be happy. His words - the words that basically mimicked that of anorexia- had no more power of me, because I realized what a jerk he was. Why on earth did I EVER let anyone make me feel so lousy? A therapist would probably tell me its because it was some twisted reminder of my ED voice and that's why I accepted it so easily as being okay. But when I cut him out that final time, and when I started facing my life for real - everything changed for the better.

And now, I'm back in school. I'm doing really well this semester. I've made more friends. I'm a beast in the gym, and I'm building an awesome butt btw. I think the gym is something I've def come to rely on as something to brighten my day. I've met some pretty cool guys there, they treat me like one of the boys. Always picking on me (in jest of course) and they also helped me decide to start pushing myself harder to put weight on.

Now. Here's the real reason why I'm posting. My painting class.
Our second assignment was to create an accretion self portrait. Basically, its an abstract self portrait created by many many layers of paint. This was fine. Mine came out pretty awesome actually, and I'm happy with it.
Our next assignment? Tell the story of your life in a series of paintings
Oh. Boy.
I started one canvas the other day. I decided to go balls out and just do what I figured would be one of the hardest ones first. Its an abstract painting. Palette knife in hand, I created my backround. Smears of dark colors to make what looks like an ocean. A lip of gray crested across the top. And then I started tearing up my journals. Food journal pages, exercise journal pages, and random loose pages of journal that I'd found. I mod-podged these bits and scraps onto the canvas. I left two of the pieces of journal pages fairly intact so they could be read. One of the scraps I'd pasted near the top was a daily goal. I guess I must have been having a hell of a day that day. I'd scribbled out the goal I'd originally written and replaced it with the words "Kill Myself".

I often forget how desolate and helpless I once felt. I looked at the words I'd written on the pages. My eyes watered. This was my life. Literally, my life pasted up on a board for people to see. Calories in, calories out. And I knew no other way. "I don't want this life anymore, or any life for that matter. No matter how hard I try, its never good enough. So why bother trying". That's a direct quote from my journal in 2008.

Its really hard for me to share with anyone how weak I was. I always portray this image as being a hard-ass, of being strong and tough as nails. But truth be told, I was just a scared little girl. I didn't know what I was doing when I started recovery. I was resistant, stuck in my ways and terrified of change. Slowly but surely, with persistence and with a lot of mistakes - I did it. Even now, there are times when I feel insecure or unsure. But I keep going and I do it anyways. Because even if I have one bad day, I know in my heart a bad day today is still better than the alternative. And because now I know one bad day is not an end all, be all. Better days will come as long as you keep yourself open to them.