Will someone please explain to me why it always seems easier to run from a scary situation rather than actually deal with it? Please? What purpose does it actually serve? I can't seem to think back on a time in my life when I preferred facing problems vs. avoiding them. Not just avoiding, but running as fast as I possibly could in the opposite direction. Even if the consequences were unbearable.
At this very moment I am choosing to sit with uncomfortable feelings. Anger. Fristration. Irritability. Anxiety. Worry. Frightened. Fed up. Exhaustion. Restlessness. Rage. Shame. Trouble concentrating. Guilt. Disappointment. Misunderstood. Emotional hunger. Overwhelmed. Dread. Lonely. Unworthy... Is it really possible to have all of these feelings at the same time?! Apparently, I have never given myself the opportunity to find out and it's becoming much more clear why I tend to choose to ignore these feelings.
Who in their right mind would gladly bring on any of those feelings? From the time we are very young, we are taught that any emotions except joy and cheer are simply unacceptable. Crying makes you weak. Anger makes you a horrible person. Feeling overwhelmed makes you inadequate compared to others who have a full schedule. Stereotypically speaking of course, but that doesn't make it any easier to deal with. Personally, I feel that constantly wearing my happy face is exhausting. It may have taken me 24.5 years, but unfortunately, I have become an expert at immediately squashing any negative emotion.
Over the past few months I have gained an understanding of what the purpose of my eating disorder is and why it seems impossible to let go of. Rather than focusing on emotions, happy or sad, I distracted my thoughts with food & numbers. I believe everyone has their own way of coping with difficult times in life; my 'drug' of choice was food or the lack there of.
Surprisingly, as I continue writing this I am beginning to feel more and more calm. I keep hearing my mom's famous words- "This too shall pass, Miss Belle." I think she may have been onto something after all. Negativity in any form is not pleasant, but it also makes feelings of joy and happiness that much stronger. I think one of my biggest obstacles in recovery will be facing my fears, unlike earlier today. In the moment running seemed like the right answer, but in the long run it caused all of the negative emotions I listed earlier to hit me at once. Luckily, I was able to sit with them this time around. Our biggest fears will never go away until we finally decide to face them.
"Life, she realized, so often became a determined, relentless avoidance of pain-of one’s own, of other people’s. But sometimes pain had to be acknowledged and even touched so that one could move into it and through it and past it. Or else be destroyed by it."