Where the F is the rainbow?

I’ve been in outpatient treatment for my disorder for over a year now.

Am I better?

Sure – on the outside I’m sure I appear to be cured. I’ve gained weight, I no longer look skeleton like… if anything I probably look like I could stand to loose a few pounds.

So all cured right? WRONG.

On the outside you’d never tell, but on the inside it almost feels worse. I still have the negative talk, the controlling drill sergeant and I feel uncomfortable in my own skin. I don’t like how things fit and I don’t trust my body to do what it needs to do… or whatever it’s trying to do.

I fight the urge to quit treatment everyday. I fight the urge to quit the trudge towards healthier life long choices and fight the urge to revert to the disordered behaviors just to feel a little more comfortable.

So where the F is the rainbow at the end of all of this? Not sure… just trying to trust that it really, truly is there…

I guess this applies to so many other times in our life. We can’t always see the rainbow through the storm, the finish line or the celebration. We have to trust and let it happen.

Stay strong!

TRUE Strength

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Moving mountains

You can’t move a mountain with a single shove, no matter how strong you are. Rather it takes moving stone by stone sometimes even pebble by pebble.image

A good friend reminded me of this as I shared with her the reality of my health and battle with the disorder. I love the visual as I think it applies to many challenges and struggles.

For my CrossFit friends think about your first day at the box… You didn’t walk in and knock out a sub 4 minute Fran and probably didn’t hit three muscle ups in a row. Little by little your form, strength and endurance improved and that once mountainous goal that once seemed so out of reach is now within reach or one that you’ve conquered.

As motivational as this visual is there is also a very tangible reality associated to it. Today I was reminded that while figuratively moving those stones and pebbles, sometimes one you’ve moved to the new spot (the healthy spot, the goal, the new achievement) can roll down and hit you in the head.

It can be frustrating, maddening and make you want to just throw it up and say f’ it. For me, during my battle with the disorder it causes that drill sergeant to fire up. The orders start barking – sounding off saying that I’m out of control, I need to restrict, need to revert or stop trusting the process and my “team” of counsellors.

The battle today is not necessarily to move any stones forward… It’s simply not to move any backwards. That alone will be the struggle.

Stay strong have TRUE Strength.

(More about what has caused the trigger to flare up soon after I can process a bit more.)

“Actually”

A family member of mine… we can call him “George” (remember the old abominable snowman cartoon with Bugs Bunny where he’d “hug him, and stroke him, and cuddle him, and sing to him, and call him George, duh.”) uses the word “actually” in a way that grates on my nerves.  Be prepared, now that you’re reading this, you’ll hear it more and I promise it will drive you crazy.

This person, when asked how the day was, will respond – without fail with… “Actually… not too bad.” Or, “Actually it was good.”

Why does this drive me crazy? Well think of it in the same light of our justice system… we are innocent until proven guilty.  This use of the word “actually” implies that the person assumes that the day is going to be bad and then is surprised… it wasn’t too bad, “ACTUALLY.”

Why come at a day with the assumption that it will be a bad day? hugo-the-abominable-snowman

In my most snarkiest voice… suck it up buttercup!  

Remember … you ACTUALLY do make each day what it is… watch a little Bugs Bunny, run around outside, laugh at yourself and have a good one!

TRUE Strength

 

Brutal Honesty

Sometimes the hardest TRUE Strength is honesty.  stronger than this

And the chart topper is honesty with yourself.  It’s amazing to me how easy it is to lie to ourselves and convince ourselves what we want to see as reality.    

My lie… the reality that my disordered thinking and tendencies have started to resurface.  In my experience, and I don’t dare speak for everyone, the harshest reality as a person who has battled eating disorders or disordered thinking is that it never really goes away or is officially treated.  It’s my addiction. Compared to someone’s alcohol or drug addiction. As odd as it sounds… restricting, over exercising, controlling is comforting to me.  The scariest part for me is that my disordered thinking comes under the veil or cloak of doing something healthy.  It just goes too far.  It’s enticing… alluring even.  Always under the best of intentions… and then slips.

It’s very easy to say there’s nothing wrong or I’m all under control.  

But the TRUE Strength reality is … honesty is harsh… and it’s time to get honest.  

My friend, Meggie is someone I really look up to.  She is brutally honest and open about her struggles and as a recent first time mom has been experiencing all the amazing ups and downs and blurred reality of newborn life.  All while still being honest about these ever present disordered thoughts.  Her article about Orthorexia encouraged me to seek more guidance and to acknowledge I may be loosing control and need to be more honest with myself.

Meggie writes for Saltyrunning.com.  You can read her full article HERE.  

Perhaps, such an honest post is not all that fun to read… but, if it can encourage even one person to get some help, it is vital.  Thank you for sharing your TRUE Strength with me.  

 

Born with strength

As cliche as it sounds, I am constantly amazed by how much I learn from Baylor and Nola every single day.  I am positive in their short 14 months with us, they have taught us much more than we have taught them!  

They teach intangibles such as: a deeper sense of love, selflessness, unending worry, and how to let go of control.  I’ve learned to let life happen and that control is simply not possible at all times, nor is it any fun!  They’ve taught me to live in the moment and laugh at myself and at stress.

The most striking lesson they continue to teach me everyday is that we all are born with TRUE strength within us.  It’s found deep down and true inside of us all.  Their drive to discover, explore, try, fall, get back up and laugh is unending.

TRUE strength encapsulates adventure, love, life, tears, fears, and physical, emotional, and mental balance.  It’s taken me 31 years to truly understand this… and I’m still working on putting this into practice.  

It is breathtaking that children are born with TRUE strength.  It’s after years of socialization, sheltering, and limiting creativity and possibility that people are in danger of losing their ability to pull on their TRUE strength.

I think about how my girls don’t know any limits on what they can accomplish.  They try and explore and learn and fall down and try again.  They are exercising their TRUE Strength. My goal is to foster this inner strength within them and within myself so that I can continue to help them grow and to personally be a better, stronger and healthier mother and role model for them every day.

This picture is my definition of how we all are born with TRUE strength… right now we may see a slide… the girls see an adventure… one to climb up, slip down, laugh at, bump into each other and attempt over and over again.

fearless girls

My wish for you all is to reach inside – grab a hold of your TRUE strength – help others find theirs and embrace it! 

Strength of mind

As the weights feel heavier and our bodies slow the strongest asset we have is the strength of our mind.  

We have people counting on us, people who need us, mouths to feed, words to spread, wounds to heal… what is a little tired muscle have on us??

NOTHING!  

Our mind is stronger than we often give it credit for being.  It can adjust our mood, it can draw a silver lining on a cloud… it can make or break us.  When we forget the strength of our minds, we can fall short, stop before we need to and let ourselves live at status quo.

BUT… when we take it for all it’s worth and use the strength of our mind for all the limitless possibilities… watch out.  Here we come.

No fear

No stopping us

No longer letting ourselves hold us back

When you use the strength of your mind for positive movement, there is no one and nothing to stop you in reaching your goals. 

Go get it – TRUE Strength

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And then what?

“When writing your life story, don’t let anyone else hold the pen.” 

Often we make goals or make a change without thinking about the “what happens if…” usually it is because we want to be optimistic and positive that the goal will happen or the change will take hold.  But when faced with … ok… what happens if it doesn’t work – can you answer?

Being positive is key and the power of your thoughts and energy is so strong.  You have control over your actions and your outcomes BUT that is the key… you have power and control over YOU.  How you handle challenges; how you adapt; how you react… you do not have control over others.  You cannot change them and if your path depends on the actions of others I encourage you to have a “what if… and then what” plan. 

The best way to reach a goal is have all bases covered and all paths planned that way if something goes off course you can make the adjustments needed and continue moving forward. It’s too easy to let someone else’s actions dictate your course, goals and future.  Figure out your “and then what” and get to it!

TRUE Strength 

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