Thursday, February 14, 2013

My relationship with E.D.- Part 2

This is part two of my Relationship with E.D. series. 

So, where were we?

... Still in early 2012.

At this point, I've realized that I'm truly 'not OK.'

I knew it in my heart that I had an eating disorder, but I just didn't know how to accept it or understand. Or, maybe believe it?

I felt so lost yet, somehow knew I had to change and do so pronto if I ever had any hopes of getting my life, my happiness, my heart back.

I knew deep down why the previous attempts to become healthier were so unsuccessful. 

Like I said in part 1.... 

So why wasn't I ready? 

I was attempting to change, wasn't I? 
I didn't want to binge eat anymore. 
I didn't want to be with E.D. anymore. 
I didn't want to hurt myself anymore... 
I was REALLY trying, wasn't I? 

Around March 2012, I realized that I had never fully addressed 

where my binge eating came from; 
it's origin, where it all began, how it all started. 

I didn't have to think back on it for long... 
I knew exactly when it happened.

7 years ago, I was in a horrific car accident that changed my life forever. 

I nearly lost my life... 
and unfortunately, my boyfriend did lose his.

JD was his name and we had a incredible kind of love. 
Words will never do us justice.
It was beautiful and it was so beyond real.
It was a gift from God that I'm still thankful for every single day.
You can read more on that story HERE. 
(I hope you have time to read about his courage at some point-- he was one amazing human being)

I was hospitalized from the wreck for a week with four breaks in my pelvis, two on each side, and a completely shattered left foot.

The doctors told me that they knew I would be able to walk again, 
but they couldn't tell how well I would be able to function while running. 
They told me I might never be able to run or participate in sports like I had before the accident. 

At that point in time, I was playing three different sports 
and had been since I was about 5...
Being active was my life.  
Being an athlete was all I knew. 

It was like everything important in my life had literally been 
stripped away in the blink of an eye

Despite having faith that JD was in a better place, not hurting anymore, 
and was blessed with a great support system... It still was the absolute lowest, darkest, saddest, and most hopeless time period of my life.

Not only was I emotionally and mentally distraught, but I was also so physically broken.
I couldn't use my legs because of the injuries in my foot and I couldn't use crutches or a walker because of my pelvis... I was non-weight barring for over two months.
Translation, I could not do anything without assistance for over two months.
That means everything from showering, shaving, going to the bathroom, dressing, etc. I had to have help with.

I was unbelievably vulnerable; so emotionally empty.
On top of that, I was at the mercy of everyone else physically.
Not only was my soul bare and shattered for everyone to see, but so was my body...

All I could do was lay there with my thoughts, my pain, my hurt.
Not able to release it in any sort of way.

All those things combined just pushed me so far over the edge.

The months following the accident and JD's passing is the time that I started to develop my binge eating disorder. 

I was such a mess, no one knew how to handle me. 

Except with food. 
Everyone realized, myself included, that food was the ONLY thing that brought me comfort, even if it was just for a brief moment. I learned that if I could eat my sadness, it brought me instant gratification and almost a "coating" for all the sadness happening inside. 

Until I was hungry again, anyway... 

I never realized it though... Not once.
And it's been going on for years, more present during some years than others.
If I wasn't binging on food, it was something else that offered instant gratification; drinking, poor decisions with guys, empty relationships with friends...
No matter what though, I always came back to food.

The deeper I dug into my sickness, the more I realized that food had become engraved in my mind to equal gratification. 

Not just satisfaction or enjoyment, but a masking
A covering, a coating of all the things I was feeling internally. 

It started just when I was sad or upset but overtime in turned into when I was happy, excited, nervous. 

AKA, all the time. 

Somewhere along the way, I trained my heart, my mind, my body, 
and my soul to seek comfort in all the wrong things.

It wasn't just a habit, but a way of life. 
I was selling myself short of so much happiness!

This meant that I was going to have to start a new normal. 
E.D. wasn't a relationship that could be conquered within a few months. 
My relationship with E.D., like the weight I'd acquired, did not consume me overnight. And it most certainly wasn't going to go away or just end overnight. 
It was going to be a process. 

Despite how much this scared me (and frankly still does) I knew it'd be worth it.

Summer 2012
I slowly tried to stop binging here and there and pray to God specifically about MY DISORDER and all that it meant and carried with it. I had never admitted my relationship with E.D. in my prayers before.

It's not that God wasn't enough for me or that I thought He couldn't help me... 
It was that I didn't let Him be enough. 

I didn't have faith that He can be everything I need and that included being stronger than the desire for food.

After some time, I rededicated my life to the Lord at the during the summer and that really helped me heal. Was the beginning of the real healing, I like to think. 
I finally started to believe that He wanted more for me than this addiction.
Also, I was starting to see that I could, in fact, overcome this with His help. 

I started seeing a counselor again as well. 

Through the counseling, I started to unravel deeper parts to my disorder. 

I was able to identify triggers and things that set me up for failure and things that led me to success. I was more open and honest about everything than I had ever been.

At this point, a few family members knew, some of my friends knew, and I started to become comfortable talking about it again.
This time, when I would talk about it, it was in a way of healing, not of bondage. 

For the first time, I was beginning to feel freedom from the power E.D. had over me.

Fall 2012. 
I finally left E.D. and all his ugliness behind. 
More on that in the next part of the series.  

Thank you for reading! 

*** If you or someone you know suffers from an eating disorder, please seek out help. There are so many great outlets out there; websites, books, counselors, pastors, churches, help centers, etc. all just waiting to be utilized. 
However, if you do reach out to a friend that is struggling, PLEASE, do so with gentleness, kindness, and love; not anger, confusion or condemnation. You may not understand why they do the things they do, but eating disorders are DISEASES. They are not something that can simply be fixed with a pep talk. There is so much pain and shame involved. Coming clean with their struggles is a huge step. Be kind, be loving, and be understanding. ***
One more thing
no matter what you've been through 
or what you've done throughout your life.... 
You are beautiful and you deserve happiness.  


Valerie said...

Love you, my brave, strong, beautiful friend.

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