Most of my posts these days are quite recovery-oriented, but I want to raise awareness for the uglier parts of the process. In honor Halloween (yeah yeah, I’m one week late, I know), I’m throwing it back to my Halloween in residential treatment. Below is where I was and how I felt that day:
October 31, 2016: 8:49 pm:
Challenging. Day. And my legs are so hairy. Reina didn’t wake me up this morning and Manya came into our room at 7:15—when breakfast starts—and was like, “Reina! You didn’t wake her up?!” Reina was like, “Yesterday you got mad at me!” I was like, “yesterday was late breakfast because it was Sunday AND we had a fucking fire alarm!”
Lunch was rough. As you know, my anxiety was at a 10 this morning. I managed it by talking to Emmy and Anya and checking in with Carly (it’s amazing what reaching out can do). But then the real monster woke up: the depression, the irrational (notice that healthy me can identity that it’s irrational) self-hatred overcame me like a demon. I walked around in cooking group feeling inadequate and like a failure for no good reason. When it’s triggered I always feel like everyone around me hates me and wants to see me fail, and I did feel that this time, but the rational me was able to recognize that that wasn’t me, so I was less timid/apologetic about my words & actions. I wrapped the hot dogs in crescent rolls. Mo, brilliantly dressed as Mary Poppins, planned for us to make mummies (hot dogs in crescent rolls), mouths (apple slices with PB& marshmallows for teeth), and dirt cup graveyards (chocolate pudding mixed with cool whip topped with crumbled oreos, green frosting grass, and a Milano tombstone). Kettle corn came with the entrée.
When I entered the kitchen, restriction and binge urges hit. There was a part of me—not my E.D.—that was excited about this cooking project and wanted to try everything, especially the dirt cup. The healthy part of me had subconscious thoughts that morning of celebrating Halloween with a dessert, guilt free. Plus, last year during the onset of my weight loss, I told myself I would “cheat” on Halloween. (Obviously, once Halloween rolled around, I was so far gone that I wasn’t able to.)
I subconsciously banished those feelings with restriction urges. I also felt a slight binge urge to just eat all of it. The urge was not as intense as I imagined it to be. I was scared because I was so anxious and depressed that I thought my craving came from a place of emotional eating; I thought trying dessert was binging. (I ate the whole thing. To this day I’m still ashamed). I didn’t trust myself around food because of my emotions. One of my intentions during the meal was to not separate my emotions from the food. Emmy checked in with me at the end of cooking group when we were decorating dirt cups because I was clearly depressed. I checked in with Talia, too, and told her about the depressions and she said we would talk about meds.
In Pre, I said my fullness was at a 5. Then I changed it to 4.5. But I was having hunger pains so I know I was lower than that. I said I was higher than I was because I was scared of my urges and went into a restriction mentality to “protect myself” from them. (I learned at the end of this why ignoring cravings is a bad idea, and that it is important to satiate your body—to give it what it wants and needs).