Saturday, November 24, 2012

Thank You, Recovery

In eating disorder world, if there is such a thing, there is nothing more anxiety provoking than Thanksgiving. If I eat the amount of food I feel comfortable eating, then people will think I'm restricting. And if I'm being honest, what I'm comfortable eating is still considerably less than what my meal plan prescribes. If I fill my plate and eat like everyone else I quickly become miserably full, highly triggerd, and the entire day is ruined. Either way, my thoughts become overwhelming and it feels like I'm failing.

At the end of the day, with the help of a supportive friend, I met my calorie requirements, but my brain was still in overdrive. The tug of war game between my disordered and healthy thoughts was more intense than anything I've experienced in a long time. 

Eat dessert.
Don't eat dessert.
Put butter on your potato.
No, save the extra calories.
Drink regular soda.
If you drink diet, nobody will think anything of it.
Take a bigger piece of turkey.
Nah, a smaller piece will feel better when it settles.
Splurge on something you can only eat once a year on Thanksgiving.
No way, choose your safe foods. You don't want to be triggered.
Stick to your meal plan.
This is a stressful day, I deserve a break from that stupid plan.
Everyone is watching me eat, I better be good.
Nobody will know if I skimp here and there.
I will do my best to accurately estimate my calories today.
Round up, better to be under than over.
After the feast at lunch, I still have to eat dinner.
I'm too full to eat dinner.
I'm struggling, I better reach out.
Isolate. Isolate. Isolate.
I better smile so nobody knows how hard this is.
Why doesn't anyone care enough to ask me if I'm okay?
Ahhh, I'm giving myself a headache just thinking about it. It's no wonder I was a grouch that night. Ask my parents, it was brutal.

Now that the big day has come and gone, however, I can think a little more clearly about it. Yes, the entire day is focused on cooking, eating and being stuffed, but that doesn't make it any different than any other day I've faced so far in recovery. Actually, it was MUCH easier than the days when I was on 4,500+ calories per day during weight restoration.

Most importantly, even though my disordered brain was screaming at me and almost beat out my healthy brain, a few days later, I realized something: Going back to that old way of thinking, acting and living, is a hell of a lot worse than my darkest days in recovery. Even though it wasn't my best day, I couldn't be more thankful for what it taught me.

Every single day is a battle, but it's a battle worth fighting. Thank you, Recovery.



  1. :) Keep up the good work! I struggled with my own as well, and after some time dealing with that and depression, now I'm cigarette free, disorder free and I'm a healthy weight as well! You got this Kelsi, not a doubt in my mind!

  2. Hey there, Kels, it's Linny (still not sure how to post a comment and not have it be "unknown"! lol). I can relate to your thoughts and I am beyond impressed and proud that you are so able to step-back after a difficult day and analyze your thoughts and food feelings. And then share them with the world! (I'd be terrified to do that!!) And then to start fresh and move forward the next day...good work, girly. Like so many others, I am thankful for you.

    1. Aww, thanks Linds! That really meant a lot to me. Sometimes sharing this stuff is scary, but it keeps me honest & moving forward. Happy Thanksgiving- Love you!

  3. I love this! Yes, that's how my disease tells me too. I don't know if you still do, but I have a feeling that for me, it is going to be with me for a long time... But, I know that it is my disease talking to me. That's good news. xoxo

    1. That is great news!! Keep listening to the healthy side of your brain, it knows best. :)