Food anxiety

•November 30, 2010 • Leave a Comment

It’s been a very long time since I’ve posted. I quit therapy and that’s left me somewhat unprepared to deal with things on my own. About a month ago, I started seeing my counselor again, but I still haven’t gone back to see the Therapist. I can definitely see where I still need a lot of work, but I’m just not feeling ready to tackle that again quite yet. I still have a lot of triggers apparently, even though I didn’t realize it. Either I was always triggered so much by the ex (Huey) that it was just the normal state of affairs, or I simply wasn’t being triggered for a long time. I’d argue for the latter option, but I have a feeling those who know me well would agree with the former.

Right now, I’m dealing with a brand new issue…well…sort of. I fought on and off with an eating disorder for about 10 years. Most of that time it was undiagnosed because I never did manage to get my weight down to the magic “15% below minimum ideal” body weight. Even so, I spent the better part of 10 years jumping back and forth between starvation and purging, and sometimes some combination thereof. I was at a very healthy body weight for a while and, although the number was higher than I’ve always wanted, the size was small enough that I could be content. Then I moved to a different state with two unhealthy, abusive “friends,” and my healthy habits fell apart. I put on weight, and I’ve never managed to take it back off. For the past six or so years, I’ve dealt with it by refusing to actually look at my whole self in the mirror (if anything I just look at the part necessary for whatever I’m doing…like my teeth or my hair). I ignore sizes in clothing completely. I guess at my size, but I don’t actually know what it is. I don’t step on scales, ever, so I don’t know how much I weigh (even though I could probably estimate it with some accuracy). I just refuse to think about or acknowledge anything related to health or nutrition or my body, or at least that’s what I did.

Then I met a guy. Actually, I met him back in August, but I just started going to the gym with him recently. I’ve had to confront my body and what it actually looks like, think about where I want to be and how to get there, and evaluate all of my bad habits. I’m huge…absolutely huge for my short stature. I need to lose at least 20 pounds to even resemble healthy. I’ve been eating horribly…too much, too often, too unhealthy. I decided that I wanted to make some changes, so I go to the gym several times a week now; I’ve started working up to running because I want to run a 5K in April. I also lift weights to strengthen my arms, legs, and core. I’m trying to stretch a lot more too. I also decided to change my eating habits (I should clarify that this only started about 5 days ago or so). I needed to eat less overall, seriously minimize the sweets and fatty foods, watch my carbs, and be more careful with liquid calories (chocolate milk and hot cocoa are killers). I’ve been doing well so far, focusing on protein and fruits and veggies and limiting sweets and fatty foods.

I realized over the weekend that I need to be very careful though. Although what I’m doing sounds very healthy, I know that I’m very aware of my body now and that puts me in a dangerous place. I avoided self-loathing by simply avoiding acknowledgment of my body, but I can’t do that anymore. Now I have to face it. I realized today that I have to be super SUPER careful with food. I walked into the cafeteria at lunch and walked around to find something to eat. I dismissed every single choice one by one, and I ended up walking right back out with just an apple and some hot tea. The vegetarian dishes were all carbs (noodles, potatoes, rice) and setan (some kind of fermented bean curd that turns my stomach), so those were eliminated. The pasta bar was an obvious no-no. They had chicken parmesan sandwiches, but I already had cheese today on my eggs at breakfast and I didn’t want the bread or breading on the chicken, so I moved on. They also had chicken nuggets and fries (both deep-fried of course) and beef pot pie. I couldn’t bring myself to eat any of it. I thought of grabbing a salad, but I just wasn’t in the mood.

I have to run home between classes this afternoon, so I’ll make myself half of a peanut butter and jelly sandwich then. I’m taking a dance class tonight, so I know that I have to eat something. Lunch today was a good wake up call for me. It was a reminder that I am still treading a very fine edge and I need to stay aware and be careful. Being healthy is important. I still long for some of those old habits sometimes, but I have a lot more to lose now, and it’s just not worth it. I have to keep that in mind, and find healthy ways of reaching my goals no matter how tempting the alternative may seem. Right now I don’t want to go down that path, but I also don’t want to ignore bad choices only to find myself well on my way down a dangerous road. I’ve done that before, ignoring the warning signs until I was already in a bad place. I just need to stay aware.



Calming down

•September 23, 2010 • Leave a Comment

I posted earlier right after I ended things with Therapist. While it’s true that self-injury is my first instinct during times of intense stress, I managed not to go through with it. I still feel pretty cruddy, but I’m not feeling the pain of it as intensely as I was earlier. I doubt I’ll come through it completely unscathed, but I’m pretty sure I’ll come through it alive.

Therapy ended because it wasn’t going anywhere. For the third time in less than a year we ended up having a conversation about what we could actually DO in therapy. We don’t get anywhere and always end up talking about why I’m afraid to take some step in therapy. No matter how much we talk about it and try to find ways around it, we always end up back in the same place. It just isn’t worth wasting time right now.

The benefits simply do not outweigh the costs. Right now I stand to potentially lose a lot in the if I open Pandora’s box of memories and crap, but I don’t stand to gain much of anything in the short-term. Eventually, I expect that life will start to get triggering and all of the dreams that I’ll manage to make come true will be at risk unless I do the work. Currently though, that simply isn’t the case. I can’t think of any reasons to force myself to do the work now…and the harder I try to force myself, the worse everything seems to get.

The harder I try to open things up in therapy, the busier and more overwhelmed I get with life. I take on more and more to avoid the things I am trying to dig up. It’s a catch 22, and it’s dangerous. I hate feeling like a failure for not being able to push through this (that is how I feel and no amount of talking about how I’m just not ready changes it).

I’m just very confused right now, and exhausted, and overwhelmed. I did something good for myself tonight and that helped a little bit, but I still feel like a hot mess on the inside. Everything feels scrambled and I’m not exactly what steps to take next. I’m still raw, but I’m starting to go numb…

Bad day

•September 23, 2010 • Leave a Comment

I just quit therapy. It was necessary, but I don’t know what to do now.

It wasn’t the therapist or the therapy. I am just incapable of doing the work right now.

Feeling empty…want to cut

Meditation complications

•August 12, 2010 • Leave a Comment

Therapist still wants me to work on communication. I still feel like I have a lot to lose by trying. Something is different, but I get the feeling it has more to do with the fact that I’m trying to be more accepting than it does with any real effort on my part. I’ve been noticing lately that I’m more aware of when a few of the kids are close. I notice Katie in particular, but she’s not the only one. I suppose that it’s good to have at least some kind of internal awareness again.

I’m supposed to be trying meditation to increase communication, but I haven’t really done much with it. At least I don’t have to worry now that the guy I really like will flip out about all of this. He’s more accepting of it than I am (Therapist thinks I should follow his example…). Part of the reason I haven’t been doing much is because I haven’t been sleeping. Lack of sleep makes meditation a little bit difficult.

Luckily I’ve had some very good sleep now (finally), so maybe it’s time to give it a try.

Having someone else be accepting of me…with DID and all…helps a lot. It’s harder to convince myself that accepting it will destroy my life. I can’t say that I won’t have a relationship until I’ve gotten it together because no one will have me; I’ve met someone who doesn’t seem to care. At least one part of my life no longer depends on being completely “healed” to accomplish it. Even if I started switching semi-regularly again, I don’t believe he’d turn his back on me. It would just take a little bit of getting used to.

I’m running out of excuses not to do the work…

Dating know-how

•August 11, 2010 • Leave a Comment

I have none.

I’ve never made it to date 4 with anyone. By the end of date three (if we even really have a date 1 and 2), we were in a declared relationship. I’m spending time with someone (‘the guy’) who actually knows how to “date'” and I feel at a bit of a loss. I suppose the only thing I can really do is to take his advice. He recommends sitting back and letting things unfold. I don’t have much doubt about where things will go eventually, but the wait is a challenge. If he has his way, I’ll learn a lot of things (hopefully including patience among them).

We have so much fun together. I really love that. He seems to intuitively know what will make me  feel good and be happy. I feel such an intense need to reciprocate that. I want to do things for him and with him. I don’t know that I’ve ever felt this invested in a person before in this way. Usually I feel like I want to help others because I like to help others and make them happy. I don’t expect anything in return and usually don’t get anything (although it’s more mutual with a few of my closest friends). I trust him and feel so cared about that I can’t imagine not doing anything I can for him.

I was a bit worried about one potential complication though. The friend from home who has a major interest in me decided that he didn’t want to move up here (he’s trying to get out of a state where he has too many bad connections). Now, he’s being evicted for not paying his rent and he wants the option of moving up here again. I made sure that he knew we may never be a couple (pretty sure that won’t happen). I also told him that I am going to date in the meantime. He’s a screwed up guy with a lot of work ahead of him to get life straightened out. I’m not going to put my life on hold to see if he does the work (completely aside from the fact that I’ve already found someone amazing that I am in no way willing to give up). He knows all of that and still might want to move up here. I’m okay with that I guess.

As long as I still get to spend time with ‘the guy’ then I am content.

Worrying too much

•August 10, 2010 • Leave a Comment

I was going back and reading a few recent blog posts. I really do worry far too much sometimes. I was terrified of telling ‘the guy’ about having DID and totally ignored the fact that I had absolutely no reason to think that he would react negatively to it like others have in the past. In fact, I ignored all of the evidence to the contrary suggesting that he would actually respond very well to it. He told me not to worry so much. I worried a lot. Guess how it all turned out and who was right? Yep…it definitely wasn’t me.

Once we got past that, I started worrying that I would have feelings and he wouldn’t reciprocate. Again, I ignored all of the external cues. He was definitely interested (and still is), and he kept demonstrating that on a regular basis. I convinced myself that I was misinterpreting things and applying meaning to his actions that he didn’t actually intend. I believed that I had imagined all of the meaning behind his gestures. I stopped letting myself have feelings because I didn’t want to feel anything for him if it wasn’t reciprocal. He was showing me all the time how he felt, and I turned it into an excuse to back away and keep some distance. He told me not to worry so much and to take it at face value. I took his advice and everything moved forward wonderfully.

One more worry was dispatched and another stepped in to take its place. Everything feels so intense and is moving at such speed that I got worried that it would just burn itself out. It feels like a whirlwind romance. I’m starting to realize the difference between that and our situation though. In a whirlwind romance, people fall in love with how they feel around each other. Partners don’t really know each other yet, but they act like they’ve found ‘the one.’ He and I spent the first couple of days getting to know each other intensively. We built a very strong foundation of trust in a very short period of time. I know that I can tell him anything and the worst response I’m likely to get is that he needs some time to adjust to it. That may not feel great in the moment, but it’s still fantastic. I can honestly say that I know a lot about his personal and family histories, his education, his beliefs and philosophies, and his interests. I think that he knows nearly as much about me. I fell for him as a person first. The “romance” came later.

I’m going to stop worrying now (actually stopped sometime early yesterday morning…but I’m not letting another swoop in to take its place this time). I’m really enjoying the ride. If it burns out quickly and the foundation I think is there turns out to have been my imagination, then I have great memories and probably a very good friend. I am happy, and I have no interest in letting worry steal that away from me.

Fighting the hunger

•August 10, 2010 • Leave a Comment

I’ve found accidently over the past few weeks that I’m sliding badly in eating behaviors. I often skip meals because I am too busy and snack instead. I don’t snack nearly enough to make up for the missed meal. Some days I’m lucky to break 200 calories. At least I know that I am doing it and I realize  that it can easily start to become a problem. I am babysitting all day every day this week. Yesterday I forgot to bring food, so all I ate was an early breakfast. Today I brought something healthy and plan to eat around 11. I am also having dinner with a (the) great guy tonight, so I know I’ll eat. I feel like I have to be super conscious of it right now.

Sometimes I feel hunger, but I simply ignore it because I think I’m too busy or can’t decide what I want. It’s all silly justification. I need to do one more serious grocery shopping to get myself through until school starts again. Then I can eat at the dining hall and I’ll have a schedule and friends to eat with regularly. Right now, because it’s summer, I don’t have much consistent structure in my daily schedule. That makes it very easy to eat at weird times or not eat at all.

At least today I know I will eat. I will worry about tomorrow when it gets here. As long as I’m aware of it and am making an effort to manage the problem, that’s good enough, right?