Hello, Curveball

Sickness spread through my workplace and unfortunately got hold of me last week. Following my meal plan is a fight on its own… throw a sore throat, nausea, loss of appetite, congestion, a stuffy and runny nose, headaches, fatigue, and overall weariness into the mix, and goodness does the difficulty of that fight intensify. I was not prepared for that added challenge and my mind definitely veered to some unhelpful places.

“Is it okay not to follow my meal plan since I feel sick? That is a legitimate reason, right?”

“Oh! And if I were to lose weight because I didn’t follow my meal plan for a legitimate reason such as feeling sick, that is justified… right?”

No. No. NO!

Restricting and losing weight is rocky territory for me, and the fact that I began to seriously contemplate and justify restricting and losing weight, using feeling unwell as reasoning, felt like a red flag. The eating disordered part of my brain can get sneaky. I countered it, over and over again, bringing myself back to the things I value and the life I want for myself.

I have not been perfect with following my meal plan during this period of sickness, but I have truly aimed to meet it. Prioritizing my recovery requires nourishing my body under all circumstances. This experience has been quite a test for my recovery in many ways. It has also been a learning lesson for the future.

While symptoms of my cold are still present, I feel much better than when it was at its worst the last several days. I cannot wait to get back to a place of good health! Bodies are such incredible organisms and I am thankful for the resilience mine continues to show, especially after all the abuse I have put it through.

Fight On

Returning to PHP last November, before falling flat on my face and allowing my eating disorder to transform into a vicious force to be reckoned with, is among the best decisions I have made!

I entered PHP with the understanding it would be for two weeks, which is a timeline I presented. After getting the ok from my employer, I made the choice to follow my team’s recommendation to stay in PHP until I at least reached a place of weight restoration and get back on a maintenance meal plan. A little over seven weeks later, I discharged on Wednesday, January 18. Despite being a short stay in comparison to the 10 consecutive months I once spent between residential and PHP treatment, those seven weeks and two days felt incredibly long. I threw up my fists and fought my eating disorder head-on with great intensity I have never fought it with before. I took on challenge after challenge, fighting to truly do that fully surrender thing I talked about.

Today marks exactly one full week that I have been out of PHP and I am fighting what feels like a new fight. While I have made extreme progress surrounding my recovery over the years, I have never succeeded with maintaining a solid level of recovery after stepping down from PHP. I want this time to be vastly different than previous times. I am channeling a lot of energy and focus toward prioritizing my recovery.

I am both excited and scared to write this new chapter of my recovery journey. I so badly want to be on the other side. I am fearful I will never get there. I am also determined to get there. I have not fought as hard as I have and come as far as I have to settle for less. I am going to fight on.