Tag Archives: mental illness

And I have an announcement

I know I have been out of touch lately, my dear followers. As always, life happens. But, in honor of some exciting news; I’m back and ready to blog. I will most likely make some changes to my site over the next few days. For those of you who have followed me since the creation of this blog three years ago, I’ve been pretty anonymous about who I am; with the exception of my first name. Once I make this super thrilling announcement, most of my anonymity will be gone. So, I’m going to try and embrace that; and shatter stigma of my journey. Most likely, I will be creating a second blog page with who I am; my happenings and my life. I’ll still keep this blog active; for we all need a place to vent, rant, and express ourselves without judgment. So those of you who have been avid readers, please stay tuned for some updates and follow my new blog as it develops.

Now; for the great news — I’ve officially jumped on board with the creation of a non-profit organization with the mission of breaking stigma of mental illness. As a director and the vice president, I excited to share that a new non-profit organization is blossoming. Everything happened super quick; and that’s okay. I am running with it. The organization is comprised of women who have either experience their own battle with mental illness; from alcoholism and drug addiction to eating disorders and depression, or have been on the battle field as a loved one.

Talking Saves Lives is in its infant stages, but we are eager to watch it grow. Please take a few minutes to visit the main page here.

Also; follow us on Twitter: @talksaveslives or Facebook: facebook.com/talksaveslives.

Burying ED

The answer isn’t simple, but it seems that it should be. Or maybe, the fact that I have to let go, fully, of the eating disorder, it’s saddening, in a twisted way, to give up who I was for four years. It’s hard to just abandon that part of me. There’s this pull —  a constant tug of war to BE better or BE sick. Having that behavior, healthy or not, is a hard embrace to disconnect. There’s something comforting in that mentality, that identity, and I don’t know what it is like to be in the full identity of a recovered woman.

Taking action despite the thoughts, feelings

While I was away on my vacation and reuniting with my roommate from treatment, I had so much laughter, fun and also perhaps a bit of a spiritual awakening.

Probably the biggest fear that I had was bringing home what I had gotten from being away. It’s sometimes easier to do well and move forward in recovery when you are out of your element, and what is normal. It’s easier to break away from such self-destructive behavior and then mold into pro-recovery approach. While I was away, something in my head simply connected. I could prepare and eat three full meals each day while enjoying some snacks and not blow up like my head imagined.

I truly felt decently comfortable in my body and didn’t have too much stress about continually being healthy. Minus a few urges in my head that were instinct like – you can get rid of this – or – just go back to how you were before you left for vacation. Those aren’t my thoughts though, in a sense. They are the way I have been living for years.

When I came back home, I managed to stay motivated, manage meals, eat continuously without restriction, and it was going well. I think it is this moment of a miracle when you choose to be alive and to continuously move forward one choice, one step, one meal at a time.

Now, I find myself falling into a rut today. I feel uncomfortable and full off and on and for some reason, today I’m mentally having a harder day. I’d like to shut off the ED thoughts and voices, but I guess right now I just have to acknowledge they are there and just NOT give into any of them. Is that what recovery is about? Continuing to do the hard thing despite how you feel or think? Despite the feelings and the urges, and the constant thoughts that follow you through the day and not giving up?

I truly didn’t think I would get to this place in my recovery, but God worked a miracle and turned me into a miracle. For that I am grateful. But right now I am scared because I have never, at least any time recently since being away in residential treatment, have I lived through the behavior or health with the simultaneous sick mind. It’s frustrating and exhausting. I guess now is, how do I keep moving forward while everything is still there, crystal clear and loud, screaming in my head?

“Some birds are not meant to be caged, that’s all. Their feathers are too bright, their songs too sweet and wild. So you let them go, or when you open the cage to feed them they somehow fly out past you. And the part of you that knows it was wrong to imprison them in the first place rejoices, but still, the place where you live is that much more drab and empty for their departure.”

I’m not sure where I have been. The last time I posted I was celebrating one year of sobriety. It was a beautiful celebration. But it’s now February.

It would make sense to post a long entry about what has been happening; but really, nothing extremely impacting has been going on.

I enrolled to go back to school in the fall; this is the highlight of my year to come. I’m just waiting for the green light to sign up for my part time courses.

Other than that; I’ve been managing with my new doctor (who is my former doctor). But I missed my appointment on Monday. I was sick last week physically, so I just slept all the time and could not wake up. This morning I set more than 10 alarms to wake up in time for work so I could make it on time to therapy after.

I’ve been pretty walled up lately. I’m cold and afraid of getting hurt. Actually, I’ve already gotten hurt. I have a broken heart. The woman who introduced me to hard drugs has once again, surfaced in my life and it is painful.

I had to make the unbearable decision to write a letter; cutting things off so that I could finally heal from this toxic relationship and move on in my life. But it just feels lousy right now. It’s like a really bad break-up.

Not only that; my anxiety is so extreme that I feel like I am drowning. I am always anxious, scared, paranoid. I feel like everything is off beat, and the world is spinning in the opposite direction.

My need to take showers and completely organize then reorganize then organize has been out of control and even that doesn’t calm me down but if I don’t do those things I am even worse. Layers are maxed out and my urges to self-harm again have skyrocketed.

The other night, I broke my razor and placed it in the shower to wait; so it would be ready if I had to cut. I did not… but I’ve been exhausted trying not to use destructive behaviors. But I feel a little discouraged right now.

My anorexia has more than flared. I mean it’s manageable but it’s really intense. I’m tired of drinking ensures and boost, and all I want to do is take care of everyone else. I’m a caretaker. Because I can’t control anything else in my world right now.

The other night, I raised my hand in an AA meeting to share and the next thing I knew, I was crying, hysterically in this room full of people. Then I went into the back room with my mentor and just started sobbing, and I collapsed on the floor.

I can’t find God right now; I feel so distant and also so ashamed, guilty, and distraught. I know we hit a bottom when we stop digging… but I don’t even have a shovel at this point.

Oh, I have 13 months of sobriety.

The Broken Ones

This song is very inspirational to me and often fills me with positive thoughts and motivation. It has gotten me through some very painful times. Sometimes, when I am driving in my car, I play it loudly, and sing to it, imagining all the people who have helped keep me alive, keep me going, keep me from not giving up.

Don’t test the waters

Alcoholic. Dependent on alcohol. Addicted to alcohol. Craving alcohol. Needs alcohol. These would be different things that describe me when I was an active alcoholic. Lately, I had been struggling with the reality of not being “earthy” or being “normal” with my drinking. Basically, knowing that I can’t drink safely is something that is about acceptance.

Recently, I had thoughts periodically about how overwhelming and stressful the thought of never being able to drink again or dealing with the concept of doing what I need to do to recover from whatever mental illness is in control. I thought, “Well, shit. That sucks.” There was an emotional need to throw things, break things, drink things because that concept felt impossible. It was a need of reminding myself that “One day at a time” theory. If I focus on today, tomorrow will take care of itself.

However, while that is a wonderful concept and works well, sometimes the real life understanding is stronger and it’s very upsetting to feel like I am always going to have to do this every single day. It’s hard. And lately, I’ve had those thoughts of, “Why am I doing this!? What is the point of this? Why not just stop all this crap and be normal?” I even had the thought of “I want to be normal. So I am going to choose to be normal and just drink like I want.”

Well, that doesn’t work, clearly. While I am still clean and sober, I had a dream last night that felt real and in that dream, I drank. I lost my sobriety after almost half a year. In the dream, I remember being so devastated. I was sobbing. I saw my sponsor and couldn’t bring myself to tell her. So, perhaps that was the dream I needed. Perhaps that was God, my chosen HP, that was giving me a warning of how it would feel if I threw everything away and decided to “test the waters” as the Big Book often talks about.

Thankfully, I woke up sober, but felt what I would feel if I chose to relapse. Thankfully, I woke up, knowing how much internal pain I would cause by choosing to hurt myself and picking up again.