So this weekend, I checked off a pretty big thing on my to do list for 2012:
I’m honestly still having a little trouble comprehending that I did actually finish college. It’s kind of surreal because I don’t have any more school work to do, appointments to get to, meetings with professors, thesis work, reading, papers to write, things to bitch about…:) It’s really starting to sink in that I did it and if I may say so myself, I’m starting to feel really proud and not just relieved that it’s over.
However, today is another special day because I’m 6 months into my recovery and it’s hard to believe how far I’ve made it. Of course, I still the rest of my life to keep myself in recovery, so it’s one of those journey not destination things, but I think I should be proud of this too. I remember how hard it was when I had to tell my parents I had relapsed last October, right after my sister’s 21st birthday and shortly after I was hospitalized and diagnosed with BPD. Since then, life has been an emotional roller coaster but the difference was that this time I strapped myself in so I didn’t fall off the ride. The more I stayed in my seat (please excuse the extent of this cheesy metaphor) I realized how much easier things got. Yes, there were moments that made my stomach churn and scared me and I cried and yelled a ton, but then the fear starting dissipating ever so slightly as I regained my strength.
I saw a lot of others get lost and want to stay where they were with their eating disorders and I so badly wanted to just scream, “IT’S SO MUCH BETTER OVER HERE!!” Sure, I hadn’t been “here” for very long when I was still in treatment, but I could taste it (pardon the word) and every inch I got away from my eating disorder was an inch closer to something else. It was a big leap of faith, especially since I had
failed relapsed time and time again.
I still have a long way to go, but I’ve made a lot of strides and that gives me a lot of hope for my future. I still need to work on my BPD symptoms and really be more serious about DBT, I need to continue to push myself on days that I need to be pushed, I need to find new/more ways to care for myself when I need comforting, and I need to continue to be authentic and true to myself, recognizing and accepting that others may or may not like who I am/become.
I thought I’d take a look back at November 14, 2011, my fifth day in treatment (for the fourth time) and the day I completed all my meals (at my treatment center it was considered compliant if you at least did the supplements if you couldn’t finish the meals–for my first few days of being completely compliant I did take the supplements until I started eating the meals in their entirety). This is my journal entry from that day (I’ve taken out some of the names I’d call myself and adjusted anything that would be outright triggering-please read with caution if you are struggling, I’ve done my best).
I ate all of my breakfast. The waffles, syrup, banana, peanut butter, and soy milk. I hate myself. I hate being hungry. I feel this mixture of food, guilt, hatred, and furiousness in myself. Before lunch: I had to leave group (and one of the counselors) followed me out and I talked through my urge. I DO NOT want to be put on locked bathrooms (and if I use symptoms) I will be. If I use symptoms once and give myself permission to do so, what’s to say I won’t keep doing it? I’m not here on vacation or to “take a break.” I’m here to fight a war. This is a battle; a life or death situation. Either I try and fight to get better , or I let my ED kill me. This is not a disease to fuck around with. I’m here to do this. I’m here as long as it takes to get better. I won’t be cured or fixed when I leave inpatient, but I will have taken a few steps forward. I will have (hopefully) made progress.
Like I said, I still have a ways to go. I’m a work in progress, as we all are and every day is STILL a fight for me. I still fight against urges, mostly they are “depression urges” if that even makes sense and so I use self-soothing skills as best I can to make sure those urges don’t turn into eating disorder or self-harm urges.
Even though I’m excited for this next phase in my life, I’m really scared. To be honest I had to stop writing this post halfway through because of an issue that came up that really kind of devastated me. All I can say is that I must take responsibility for my life now and that means finding a job, a place to live, and being able to take care of myself and Angie on my own. It’s hard to really feel like I’m out in the “real world” without much more than a wish list, some hopes and dreams, but I think I can do it.