Ready… Set… Leap

During the last couple of years of my recovery journey, there have been several “turning point” moments. Each of these moments involved taking a leap of faith and changing my food and/or exercise behaviour while facing my two biggest fears: gaining weight and losing control.

article-2463112-18C5742B00000578-419_964x641.jpg

Now, as any who’s experienced life with an eating disorder knows, the first obstacle to taking a leap of faith is the ED’s never-ending taunts. It usually goes something like this: “Don’t even risk it, because [insert fear here] might happen”. Fear of the unknown can be a stumbling block for anyone taking any kind of risk, but for people fighting EDs a little fear can very easily become an immobilising terror, and the ED loves to play on that.

And taking the leap in itself doesn’t immediately silence the fear. In fact, whenever I have managed to pluck up the courage to jump headfirst into uncertainty, I’ve found myself more scared than ever as I faced some of the most confronting situations of my life.

In all of these situations I had to fight to ignore what the ED was yelling at me. I had to just let go and try… try to do whatever it is I needed to do in that moment (whether it was eat more or exercise less). Looking back now, I know what the ED was telling me in those moments were lies. All the fears of how I would look, how I would feel, and what others would think about me were wrong, and having worked my way through I now have the evidence to prove it.

While in hindsight it’s easy to point out the ED’s lies, in the moment (when the fear is very real and very scary) it’s not. Right now, I’m on the verge of one of those moments. My toes are at the edge of the cliff—intellectually I know what I need to do to break through this part of my recovery journey, and I’ve got motivational lists and dreams written down all over my house—but the more I prepare to jump, the louder the ED thoughts get, and every time I look out over the edge the fear is there, waiting to swallow me up.

I know this post may not be very helpful, but when we first started mindfoodly we promised we would always be open and honest with you. And right now I’m struggling a little. I know I can (and will) do this, I just need to work up the courage. So if anyone has a positive story of taking your own leap of faith that’s led to freedom from food and exercise I would love to hear it. Please do reach out and send me an email.

Kate xx  

Advertisements

11 thoughts on “Ready… Set… Leap

  1. CC says:

    I love your honesty, Kate! There’s definitely no sugar-coating eating disorders…it sucks, recovery is hard and sometimes it sucks too even though it’s what is needed. But even amidst these times of struggle, you still seem strong – just in a different way!

    Like

  2. myjourneytorecover says:

    Can definitely relate to this Kate! I feel like some days we just want so badly to already “be recovered” and it can be so frustrating feeling like you aren’t getting anywhere.
    I finally published my blog if you want to check it out http://www.myjourneytorecover.wordpress.com. Not sure if you will find much help in there as such but definitely a lot of relatable stuff. Thanks for sharing and continuing to be real and honest xx

    Like

    • mindfoodly says:

      Thanks for reading Mandy!

      I am so proud of you for starting your own blog, its awesome-really!!

      Hope you have a lovely time in Europe and my best advice is when on holidays no exercise and no food rules, use it as a test to prove all those terrible ED thoughts wrong. xx

      Like

  3. Katlin says:

    Just wanted to share this blog post from recovery Warriors Site “Buffets used to make me nervous. So did parties with large amounts of food. These were just some of the issues I faced when I followed a very restrictive eating pattern (I can also include refusing to go to brunch with my family one weekend, ordering separately from my friends at dinners, and trying to convey to a very confused waiter at a Chinese restaurant that I don’t want any salt in my dishes). I’ve come a long way since those days (mega thanks to both my therapist and former dietitian), to the point where I feel pretty much normalized around food.
    So I surprised myself at the 4th of July party I went to last week. I didn’t go in with much anxiety, but I began to feel a little hyper-focused on food once we arrived, and I had less self-control than I thought I would.

    In my head, I heard my former dietitian telling me to focus on the people, the environment, and the conversation, but I felt myself distractedly going back for more chips in the middle of a conversation with awesome new friends I was making. I noticed I was rushing from one dessert platter to the next. I ate a slice of cheesecake a little too quickly and eagerly – dropping a bite on the floor as I did so.
    Connect With Nicole Groman, MS, RD

    By the end of the night, I was disappointed in myself. Partially because I’d lost some self-control, but more because of the thoughts that crept in as the party ended. I’ve been feeling really good in my body, but I ate too much tonight… Tomorrow I need to regain control… And I should definitely take a spin class after work. These types of thoughts only feed into the vicious cycle of restriction and reward that is characteristic of many eating disorders. They are thoughts that I no longer support and that I work with my clients to reduce! So I thought, What is happening?! Why am I feeling this way?! I’ve come so far!

    It’s important to remember that on the road to recovery, no matter how far along you are or how deep in you started, you may never feel completely “cured” of your eating disorder.
    You will have setbacks; you may relapse. But this doesn’t mean you’re failing. In fact, these steps backward are vital parts of the recovery process.

    And given that striving for perfection is a common feature of disordered eating, you may be extra hard on yourself for these setbacks, just like I was when old thoughts crept their way into my head last week. When this happens, it’s beneficial to shift your focus towards how far you’ve come and away from any steps backward and negative thinking.

    In my case, I had to recognize how the day after the party went. Several years ago, I would have avoided bread, eaten lean protein with veggies all day, and booked 4 workouts for the rest of the week. Last week, however, on the day following the holiday, I didn’t restrict at any meals. I gave into my craving for 2 bowls of Chex Mix after work because I was hungry, tired, and craving carbs; I had Oreos for dessert after dinner; and I didn’t force myself to the gym to “undo” Monday.

    When, in the thick of your eating disorder, you used to spend so much time trying to achieve perfection, it helps to remember now that the road to recovery itself doesn’t have to be perfect. And can’t we all use a reason to cut ourselves some serious slack (plus a little more cheesecake…)?”

    Like

  4. Katlin says:

    Sometimes while it is not simple you just have to “DO IT”. It wont feel nice, there will be horrid thoughts but you have to just keep on, It feels completely unnatural to do things which make us feel bad but you have to purposely do things which make the eating disorder feel bad. If your ED doesn’t want you to do something that is more of the reason you need to do it. While it is not easy YOU CAN DO THIS KATE, YOU ARE STRONGER THEN YOU FEEL. The long term benefits will be worth it, you have just got to keep doing things which bring up bad thoughts and make you feel bad as remember it is the ED which is feeling bad NOT THE HEALTHY KATE. I do hope it gets easier, please remember you are beautiful inside and out no matter what happens or how you feel. You will get though this, God bless you.

    Like

  5. superfitbabe says:

    Lovely post, Kate! I think that we make our own problems so much bigger than they actually are. At the end of the day, we always know that we’ll still be alive and able to make the best out of anything.

    Like

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s