child of God, wife, mother, recovering anorexic who longs to see the beauty in herself that she sees in the world around her

Saturday, June 30, 2012


I was bitten by the travel bug when I was a child.  I love to travel and I hate that it is so freakin expensive!  I've been to Hawaii and seen Pearl Harbor.  I've been to New York City and have pictures with me standing in front of a skyline that still held the Twin Towers (I was there in 2000).

I've been to Germany, France and Amsterdam.  I bought my wedding dress in Paris.  I went up to the top of the Eiffel Tower.  I sat on the patio of a French Bistro sipping wine and watching Paris light up for the evening.  I toured the Anne Frank house in Amsterdam. I toured the Holocaust Museum in Germany.

I've been to Vegas.  I've been to Houston, Dallas, Amarillo.  I've been to Oklahoma and Kansas.  I've seen the Statue of Liberty and the Golden Gate bridge in the same day (starting in the middle of the country, flying to the east coast to catch a flight to the west coast.) I've been to beaches on the Atlantic and beaches on the Pacific.  I've seen the inside of an obscene amount of airports. 

I've been to Lincoln Park Zoo in Chicago and the Smoky Mountains in North Carolina.  You get it.  I love to travel.  At the peak of my disease, I had a desire to go to a new town for a friends wedding.  I was to go alone and the thought of being able to just get lost in her city sounded amazing.  I ended up not going but I still long to go, to visit, to walk, to discover a great coffee shop and a fabulous book store.

Traveling brings me peace when I feel insane.  It brings me joy when life feels out of control.  It makes it safe to run away and yet still stay present for myself.  I want to travel the world.  I long for the day when I can take Hubby to Saverne France, for the day when Buckingham Palace is on my day's to see list.  I want to see it all.  It reminds me that the world is bigger than me and my problems.

Oh, and people watching doesn't need a translation :)



Bliss is the days when I can ENJOY chocolate and peanut butter without a single guilty thought, without once thinking about my thighs, without once worrying what someone else would think if they saw me, without analyzing, without fear

That is my definition of bliss.  It happens from time to time now, and I like it :)



My profile says it all.

I'm striving to live my life on purpose and with His purpose.  I want to leave a legacy when I die not just a memory.

Living on purpose, what does it mean?  It means living not just existing.  It means being proactive in my life instead of reactive.  It means partaking in my life rather than letting life just happen to me.

I want to live my life on purpose.  I want to live with purpose.  I want to live God's purpose for me.


I think until the day I die, I will be learning to forgive.  I often have to forgive myself.  I have to forgive myself for abusing my body.  I can't think I'm worthy of recovery if I don't work on forgiveness first.  I feel so guilty.  Sometimes that guilt is misplaced, but it is nearly always there.  As long as I feel guilty, I also feel like I deserve to be punished.  As long as I feel like I deserve to be punished, I cannot feel like I deserve to be cared for.  It is a ridiculous and vicious cycle.

There is also a lot of forgiving others in my life.  If you have read any of my blog, you know that already though.  I have a lot to forgive.  And it is a daily process.  Some days it comes easier than others.

What's the saying?  Holding a grudge is like letting someone live rent free in your head.  It isn't always easy to evict them though and it is even harder when the grudge you hold is against yourself.




“What can you ever really know of other people's souls - of their temptations, their opportunities, their struggles? One soul in the whole creation you do know: and it is the only one whose fate is placed in your hands” ~C.S. Lewis

No matter how much your bare your soul, no one will ever truly know it aside from you and God.  Only you know the thoughts that happen in the stillness of night.  Only God truly knows your heart.  And yet, somehow we manage to come together and support each other and love each other even though we don't know the depth in another's heart.  That is the definition of beauty, strength and friendship.

Friday, June 29, 2012

Fifty Shades of Heartbreak

It's the hottest book series on the market right now, Fifty Shades of Grey.  I heard it was like the adult version of Twilight, with lots of racy adult scenes.  I read the back cover and didn't seem too intrigued.  The intrigue came when a firestorm of a debate came on Facebook.

My friend was heavily attacked because she had read the book and enjoyed it.  Someone "unfriended" her sending an email criticizing this friends Christianity, her marriage, and her desire to read such wonton hussy books.  That did it.  My friend is one of the sweetest people on the planet.  She is kind and doesn't judge others.  She is an amazing woman, a wonderful wife to her military man and a fabulous mother to her girls.

I was pissed that she was judged so harshly (by someone who had not read the books, no less) and suddenly I wanted to read them.  I wanted to know what the big deal was.  The last things that sparked huge controversy in the Christian community ended up being series that I now love, Harry Potter and Twilight.  This, I expected, would be the same as those.

So here is my thoughts on the book, there is a bit of a spoiler alert but not much more than the review on ABC news and for some, this spoiler alert is needed.  I could have used it. 

The book is racy.  The part where they first have sex made me ravenous for my husband.  It created a physical response in me so unbelievably strong that I wished Hubby wasn't already asleep.  I'm not opposed to racy in a book.  I am opposed to this book though.

Christan Grey asked Ana to sign a contract allowing him to be her dominate and her to be his submissive.  The contract states that if she is not submissive to his every whim that he has authority to "discipline" her.  He has any number of ways that is accomplished, through a belt, a whip, a cat of nine tails, a cane etc.  He was made to be a submissive through his teenage years and that is where his dominating sexual appetite comes from. 

I had to close the book.  My heart was racing and not with desire.  My heart was racing with fear.  Now I have a wild side.  But this was just too much for me.  Memories flooded my mind.  I couldn't sleep and when I did it was not well.

This morning I picked the book up again.  I thought that possibly I had over-reacted.  Maybe I was just tired and that is what sparked those feelings.  Maybe Ana doesn't actually sign the contract.  Maybe it really is a love story like everyone said.  I started reading and felt that same sick pit in my stomach again.

I flipped later in the book.  He was beating her with a belt.  She was in her mind crying and begging him to stop but never saying a word.  (I also read the last few pages but I won't spoil that part for those of you who don't want to hear the end.) I can't do this book.  I pushed it away from me while the tears sprung up.  I understand the sexual appeal of some of the things in the book.  I cannot handle though, the physical aspect of how those sexual moments come to be.

I've been held down, unable to move while someone forces his hands on my body.  It wasn't love, that is for sure.  I've been hurt for not doing as I was told.  It isn't as glamorous as this book portrays.  I guess my thought is this, sometimes I do enjoy doing exactly as my husband says.  It can really be a turn on.  But he would never beat me if I didn't.  That is my issue.

How does loving someone ever mean wanting to beat them?  How does loving someone ever mean wanting them to hurt?  Submitting and hurting are different things.  I personally feel like it crossed the line into abuse.  I'm just not ok with it.  I'm not ok with telling other women that it is ok, good even,  to be beaten for sexual pleasure.

I'm sure that someone out there is going to bring up that Ana willingly signed the contract, that she desired to be hurt and that makes is why it is different from abuse.  I've heard that argument but I still can't go with it.  For me, in my life, coming from my past, this book is too close to the abuse that I suffered and I cannot bring myself to relive it from the perspective of someone who willingly subjects herself to it.  Your opinion may be different, and that is ok.  We can agree to disagree.

Right now I am nursing my fifty shades of broken heart.  Though I am not a spoiler alert kind of gal, I really wish someone has given me a spoiler alert.  I would have never read this book.  It was just too triggering for me.  I'll be ok, but I'm not right this moment.  I'm hurt.

Tuesday, June 26, 2012


My beautiful state is on fire.  I hate this.  We haven't had wildfires like this in 10 years and these are worse than even then.  One in particular has me feeling sick to my stomach.  My dear friend, the one who would be the legal guardian of my children if something happened to both me and Hubby, is in the path of this particular fire.

The fire above is about a half mile from her work and about three and a half miles from her apartment.  She is one of those you are hearing about under mandatory evacuation.  Yesterday it was voluntary evac, today it is mandatory.

One of the fires is just less than an hours drive south from me, to a place Hubby and I have visited regularly.  Another of those fires is about 40 minutes drive west from me. 

My home isn't in the fire path but my beautiful state is being ravished by fires that won't stop and wind that is carrying those fires farther.  There are 26 wildfires in the United States tonight, 12 of them are in Colorado.

You can smell the smoke in town now.  The view, once gorgeous, is now hazy with smoke.  It breaks my heart.  My childhood sanctuaries are being threatened by flames.  And there isn't any rain at all predicted in the 10 day forcast and only 2 days that will be below 90. 

It makes me feel sick.  Honestly, it scares me a little bit even though I'm not directly in the fire path.  I want to cry, and not just because the smoke has my eyes watering and stinging. 

I'm worried for my friend.  I'm worried for her safety, mentally as well as physically. 



To face the future is no small task.  The future is unknown, it is out of my control.

To face the past brings pain.  It hurts, it is also out of my control.

To face my fears is terrifying.

To face my depression, anxiety and pain is overwhelming.

But for the first time I can face myself.  I want to say I can face myself in the mirror, but that is only true about half of the time.  I can live with myself now.  I guess that is the facing that really matters.


Sometimes being home feels like being trapped.  When I was a kid being home was unpredictable.  Sometime it was wonderful, sometimes it was suffocating.  I spent many years feeling like home was suffocating.  The hurt was so big and the home so small that I could feel the entire house desiring to collapse on me.  I stayed over-busy venturing home only when necessary.  My home has always been far too small to hold the massiveness of my hurt.

Sometimes it still feels that way, but not usually.  My home is messy but welcoming.  Home means squeals of joy and my kids racing to see who can hug me first (bonus point, I think, are awarded if they can knock me over in my high heels!).  Home is safe now. 

When my hurt is too big for my house to hold, home is the mountains where there are no ceilings or walls trying to contain me.  Home is a welcoming, safe and peaceful house of a friend. 

If home is where your heart is, then I am truly home now.  Anywhere my husband and kids are is home. Home is anywhere there is peace and serenity.

Monday, June 25, 2012


Fight. I'm hurting.  I'm hurting a lot.  But something has changed,  I'm still fighting.  I don't feel like eating.  It is hot and uncomfortable (try 101* INSIDE my house today) and eating sounds gross when I am this hot.  I don't feel like eating, it is easier not to. 

 Eating means I'm still fighting though.  Eating means I haven't given up, even though it is tempting.  I suppose that eating means (both figuratively and literally) that I will live to fight another day.  I'm glad tomorrow is a new day.  And I hope the fight is easier tomorrow.


“You is kind. You is smart. You is important.”
Kathryn Stockett, The Help

And I have a few to add to that.  You are beautiful, more beautiful than you will ever know.  You are capable.  You are strong, stronger than you ever thought.

Psalm 139:13 For you created my inmost being;
    you knit me together in my mother’s womb.
14 I praise you because I am fearfully and wonderfully made;
    your works are wonderful,
    I know that full well.

You are treasured, you are sacred, you are His.

You are worthy of love, you are worthy of care, you are worthy of protection.  You are one of a kind, a masterpiece.  You bring something to this world that no one else in the entire universe can offer.  

I believe in you!



I have cried a lot of tears in my lifetime.  If it is true that God saves each and every tear we cry, then when I get to heaven I will have filled an entire lake solely with my tears.  Recently depression and anxiety have been a bit bigger hurdles for me.  I'm struggling.  There have been days that it simply just hurts to be me.

I feel like I have spent most of my blog talking about my tears.  The tears are often what drive me to write, just so I don't explode.  Since you probably know that, these are some of the things that have caused tears recently:

~anything at all to do with the Jerry Sandusky trial
~Hubby dealing with his own depression and the fact that I cannot make it better
~friends feeling lonely in their marriages
~that Garden of the Gods is in the path of one of the wildfires here in Colorado
~that they are evacuating horses at the fairgrounds in Estes Park due to another of the wildfires
(those two places are two of my favorite places in Colorado.  Their beauty brings serenity to my life.  The thought of even possibly not having them as a sanctuary any longer weighs heavily on my soul.)
~my brother-in-law yelling at my kids

Friday, June 22, 2012


I remember the day I laughed.  It had been months.  The relationship with the boy who I loved had ended and so had I.  I had no idea who I was if I wasn't the woman loving him.  The ache in my soul was so incredibly deep.  I was going through the motions and nothing more.  I was trying to convince myself that I had never loved him.  I was trying to do whatever it took to survive the pain.

I had just bought my first car from a dealership where a family friend worked and my air conditioning stopped working about a week after I got the car.  Even though I had bought an old car with no warranty, our friend said he would help me out if I brought the car in.  I stood there in the dealership while they were working on my car and this friend made a joke.

I smiled.  And then I chuckled.  And then I full out laughed.  It felt so good to smile again.  As I laughed I realized I couldn't remember the last time I had laughed.  I laughed more than the joke was really funny but it just felt so amazing to laugh.  By the time I got in my car I had laughed until my sides and face hurt.  I laughed until I cried.

I still sometime get so busy doing life that I forget to enjoy it.  I still sometimes forget to laugh.  I am so grateful for my children in this area.  They remind me often the joys of laughing and the healing it brings to my soul.  They say the silliest things and I cannot help but laugh.  I love the mornings when I wake up to the sound of brothers playing and LAUGHING together. 

Their laughter brings me comfort as well.  Knowing that my children know how to laugh, that they enjoy the lives they have, that they are happy and safe brings a smile to my face.  The sound of their laughter often brings out my own laughter.  I never again want to be the girl who forgot how to laugh so now I practice often :)


I want nothing more than to be able to say "The End" on this blog.  Not that I don't love you all, I do.  But I don't love that I have a need to write this blog.  I want to say "The End" to the eating disorder.

I wonder sometimes if there will ever be a real end and I don't really think so.  Not that there won't be an end to the disease, because I don't believe that, but that there won't be an end to the affect it has had on my life.  My life has been forever altered.

I believe in full recovery, I have to.  I have to believe in hope and healing.  Otherwise I'm just a girl walking along waiting for the next relapse.  I believe there will be an end to the eating disorder.  But I don't believe there will ever be an end to the journey.  Life is a journey, not a destination.  I'll never be "there" until I'm dead.

As much as I long for the end, I am grateful for the journey.  I am grateful for the dear friends I have met through the journey.  I am grateful for the healing and refining that has happened in my own life.  And most of all, I'm grateful for the fact that my openness and honesty has opened doors to help others walk through this journey.

I'm not there yet.  I wouldn't consider myself recovered yet.  It isn't the end of the eating disorder.....yet.  But I am on the path to freedom.  I am on the road to the end of the disease.  But there won't ever be an end to the journey, to the ways this has affected my life, to the way I allow God to use it in my life and in the lives of others.

Tuesday, June 19, 2012


It is fascinating to write about beginnings.  I've been pondering quite a bit lately about the beginning of my eating disorder.  I remember clearly the exact moment that it became a conscious choice to allow the eating disorder a sacred place in my heart.  One of the prettiest, friendliest, most loved girls in my high school said she wished she could be as thin as me.  I had been extremely ill.  I had lost a lot of weight in a very short amount of time.  I couldn't eat, I couldn't sleep, I couldn't concentrate.  I was SICK.  I never found out what was wrong.  It was after losing 12 pounds on a frame that couldn't afford to lose 1 that she complimented me.  I wanted her to like me more, I wanted her to envy me, I wanted to have the body that the most perfect girl in our high school wanted. It was so easy to continue to not eat, no one expected me to because I had been ill.

That was the moment I consciously thought, "I'm not going to eat."  But in reality it began long before that.  I used to drink my mom's Slim Fast and then say I had had lunch already.  I couldn't have been more than 7 or 8.  The can said to replace two meals with shakes and then eat a reasonable dinner.  It made sense to me to think it was a meal to have a Slim Fast shake and I truly thought my thighs were fat.  Really. Really. Fat.

When I was 9 years old there was a worship concert at our church, a husband and wife team.  I remember admiring the woman so much.  I remember longing for her petite figure and her naturally curly and long hair.  I remember her less than supple chest and thinking that is what I wanted my boobs to look like when I got older as opposed to looking like my mom.  I actually prayed really hard that night that God would let me grow up to be a very tiny, skinny, woman with small boobs, pretty hair and kind eyes.

There are other things, but not necessary to my point.  I was flirting with and engaging in disordered eating years before I actually had an eating disorder. It felt like it had a specific beginning but the reality of it was that it was a coping mechanism, a crutch, a fall back long before the acknowledged beginning.  I really don't remember life before food troubles.

A much more fun beginning though, is now.  I'm beginning to live.  I'm beginning to feel.  I'm beginning to love.  I'm beginning to get my life back.  Maybe saying getting it back is not quite true, I don't feel like I ever had this life before.  Sure the eating disorder stole a lot from me, but I feel like by the time it stole from me I was already mostly a shell anyway.  Abuse stole so much from me.  Depression stole so much from me. Not being allowed to have a voice had cleared out my soul.  I was empty, it was easy for Orange to move in.

When I told her to move out, I had nothing to fill that space with.  I didn't have a "me" that I wanted to return to.  I have gotten to have a true beginning.  I have gotten to decide what I want to fill the spaces inside of me.  I've begun to learn who I am, what I like and create the me that I want to be.  Now this is a beginning!


Living in the here and now is hard.  I want to run and hide a lot of the time.  But I don't, usually.  Living NOW is the key to living recovery.  I can't change the past.  Living there only brings more misery.  I can't control the future, living there brings more anxiety.  But I can live now, today, right this moment.

Staying present during pain is the hardest part of living here and now.  I'm learning, I'm getting better at it though.  As I stay present, as I feel in the now, the pain gets easier and easier to handle.  I never thought I'd live to see the day when I could do that, to live now.  The more I practice it, the easier it gets.

Monday, June 18, 2012


As much as I love my family, I couldn't love them when I was stuck in my eating disorder. At least, I couldn't  love them fully. I loved my disease too much to allow much else in my life.  I was stuck, so. very. stuck.

I would look at my children and think how much I wanted to love them RIGHT but instead I was spending all of my time and energy to hate myself.  I was sharp and angry with them, a lot.  I very seriously don't remember a year of all of their lives during the darkest pit and the slow start of the climb out.

I would look at Hubby and think of the days that I wanted him physically and wish they hadn't gone away.  To clarify, it wasn't HIM I didn't want, it was being touched, being seen, being known that I didn't want.  I wanted to love him the way he so deserves to be loved but all of my emotion was going into hating myself.

I wanted to love my friends, but I was too busy loving Orange.  I wasn't there for them anymore.  I was devoted only to my disease.  And as much as I hated that about myself, I couldn't make myself change it either.

Things are different now.  I love again, and to be honest it is amazing.  I feel again and it too is lovely, most of the time.  Love now is genuine and deep, no longer false acts based in my own self hatred.  I enjoy spending time with my family again instead of shutting them out.

Not only can I love truly again, I now can be loved as well.  I can rest in Hubby's arms and know his love.  I can see my Mother's Day cards from my boys and feel their love for me.  I really don't remember how long it was that I couldn't feel the love that was being poured into me.  I really felt like no matter how much love and care was given, all I could feel was hatred and judgement being passed.

I don't think I've actually EVER felt love like I do now.  I not only know love, but I can give it and I can feel it and I can experience it now.  It is an awe-inspiring thing to finally understand love and to have a great capacity for it!

Sunday, June 17, 2012


I'm struggling with doing this challenge right now.  And oddly enough, it has much to do with this word.  Perfect.  I wanted so badly to do this right but I got tired, I went out with friends, I spent time with my family and then I realized that I wasn't doing this challenge perfectly.  I cannot keep up.  I even started out behind.

I'm at this strange place in recovery.  I am angry with myself for not being able to blog every single day to a new word.  And yet, I realize, maybe for the first time in my life, that the reason I haven't kept up is that I am actually LIVING my life.  I'm going to concerts with girl friends, I'm tucking my kids into bed, I'm having sex with my husband, I'm getting to bed early enough to be productive at work.  I'm living instead of hiding on my blog.  And that is ok, good even.

Not to say that blogging is bad.  It isn't.  I love my little spot in the world where I can just be, no matter what it is that I need to be.  This is therapeutic for me.  But I can't let it control me either.  I nearly gave up on this challenge.  I had intended to since I'm so far behind.  Then I saw the word perfect today.  I strive so hard for perfection that I was about to quit rather than be less than perfect. 

The dream of perfection is a hard one to leave behind.  I wish I could tell you that every day I just accept myself and all of my imperfections.  I wish that I could tell you that I am always, or even usually, as willing to love living and be able to accept imperfection as well as I just did two paragraphs ago.  Sadly, that is not the case.

I'm learning to live again.  But giving up perfection is still hard.  Acknowledging my limitations is still difficult.  I still think that the physical laws of nature should apply to others but not me.  I still think sometimes that perfection is achievable.  The important part in it all though is that I'm making progress.  I'm learning to accept myself, slowly but surely.  I'm learning to live.  I am learning that perfection is not realistic.  I am learning that I am enough, exactly how I am.

And I'm grateful for those lessons though sometimes overwhelmed and scared by them.

Friday, June 15, 2012

anxiety through the roof

Title pun both intended and not :)

We are getting a new roof today.  Yay!  And holy crap, I'm sitting here trying to figure out how to cope.  They delivered shingles yesterday and the noise was loud but bearable.  I thought I was going to be ok for today.  Well, I was wrong.

The anxiety hit full force when the workmen arrived, not when they started working, when they arrived.  I realized that it terrifies me to have this many strange men near my "space".  I feel claustrophobic.  I feel unsafe (as in not safe not as in unstable).  I feel like I have to run.

Seeing ladders near my bedroom window and men in my back yard had me closing my eyes and trying to remember how to breathe.  And then the noise started.  At first I was ok.  Now I'm blogging to try to keep my mind focused and to not panic.

The lights in my house have flickered a few times.  I feel like my roof will fall in.  I feel like my lungs are about to collapse.  I'm so very grateful that my dear friend needs help painting today.  I am so glad to be able to leave my house for a while.  I'm trying to kill some time to not arrive on her doorstep before she wakes up.  I might take my kids to McDonald's just to be able to get out now.

I feel crazy right now.  Most people probably do not have panic attacks from getting a new roof.  Writing right now is the thing that is keeping my breathing normal and my mind semi-occupied.  I don't like having people around my house.  And the noise is exacerbating the anxiety already going on in my body. 

Thursday, June 14, 2012

tired ramblings about work and bbq

It isn't a word challenge, it is just me.  I'm tired.  I've been tired, really tired.  Like triple shot latte on the way to work this morning tired. I should go to bed,  and I will go to bed but this first.

Work/food balance is getting easier.  But not always.  The board of directors for my work is in town this week.  They catered in lunch for us today, a mandatory lunch.  It was delicious.  It was terrifying.  They ordered from my favorite bbq restaurant.  And yet it was difficult.  Everything was meat.  Ribs, brisket, chicken, pork, another tray of ribs.  I'm not going to lie, the thought did cross my mind a few times, "All of this food and there isn't a salad to be found anywhere?" 

I even thought a few times, "I can't do this."  But do you want to know what?  I did it.  I didn't cry.  I didn't have to leave the room.  I didn't have a panic attack.  I survived eating lunch with a group of people and it wasn't the worst thing I've ever had to do!

I have so many thoughts and my head keeps bobbing like I'm about to doze off.  I'm too tired to even convey my thoughts coherently.  But I wanted you to know, I'm hanging in there at work.  I've even started to feel like I belong there and I have even begun to love the job and many of the people.



I can't decide if I despise crowds or kinda like them.  I love that it is easy to get lost in a crowd.  No one is noticing me.  I can be invisible.  I can be no one.

I also despise crowds.  I hate feeling claustrophobic in a throng of people.  I am a little afraid of crowds.  Actually, I am afraid of new situations but especially when those situations involve a lot of people.

Last summer I had the privilege of being in the "pit" at two different concerts.  I'm not going to lie it was terrifyingly awesome.  I was afraid at first that I would get crushed.  But I also felt a rush like I've never felt before. I stood up for myself.  I pushed the drunk guy who kept standing on my foot.  I even told him after the concert, when he tried to make small talk with me and my friend that I didn't enjoy being near him during the concert because he was rude.  Whaaaaaat?  I said that to someone?

I still am not entirely sure how I feel about crowds, but I'm not as petrified of them as I used to be.  Now I find myself people watching when in a crowd.  I think I am more amazed than afraid now because I see that there are a lot of people, who are just like I used to be, a lot of people who are hurt and angry.  There are a lot of people who want to be invisible and try to do so by getting lost in a crowd.

Tuesday, June 12, 2012



Isn't it funny how your brain associates words?  I instantly thought of a tsunami when I heard the word force.  A force of nature.  A force to be reckoned with. 

I have visions of  hurricane pictures in my head, of wind blowing trees nearly to the ground while rain pours in sheets.  Windows boarded up, streets deserted (with the exception of that one crazy reporter trying to get famous for their coverage of the worst storm in history). 

I also see the eye of the storm.  The place where calm resides even though the storm rages around you.  The force of the storm doesn't steal the calm of the eye.

I think it is odd that I saw power as evil and yet I see force as powerful and terrifying yet beautiful and calm at the same time.   I almost feel like I should detest the word force as much as I detested the word power.  In the context of power forcing me to submit, it seems as though I should.  But I don't. 




There is nothing logical about an eating disorder.  If it were logical, those of us who have had them could easily see the error of our ways and stop killing ourselves.  

Hubby once told me that dealing with someone with an eating disorder is difficult because you have to be rational yourself while acknowledging that the person you love cannot be rational or reasoned with.  Malnutrition messes up every single thing in your mind.

When I was malnourished, I couldn't see how much my actions were effecting my body.  I was constantly in a state of "conspiracy theory", certain that everyone around me hated me.  Even when I finally realized that I was killing myself I couldn't think logically about it.  The logic of my malnourished brain said, "My family is already watching me die slowly.  If I were in a car accident, they wouldn't watch me die they would get a phone call to say I was gone.  It makes more sense than putting them through this."

It made perfect sense to me.  It was logical for me.  But it wasn't rational.  Nothing at all is rational or logical about any addiction, including eating disorders.  Do you know how many times I have heard,  "Why don't you just stop?"

If it were that easy it wouldn't be a disorder.  If I could explain it, I wouldn't have needed help.  If it made sense I would have never been stuck.  If it was logical, I wouldn't still have days that I just don't feel like eating for no reason at all.

I have a friend who is dealing with some pretty serious food demons right now.  And the difficult thing is that her husband is dealing with his own different demons.  He finally acknowledged his demons with this statement, "I guess I should start to stop."  She proceeds to tell me that she doesn't understand that "start to stop" mentality.  When she decides to do something, she just does it.  What does it mean to start to stop?

I smiled and reminded her of the illogical ways that that addictions work.  Do you know you should be eating?  Yes.  Do you know you are destroying your body? Yes.  Then why do you do it?  You know the problem, you can see the problem and yet you haven't stopped the behavior.  Suddenly his issues and willingness to work on them came into perspective.  

Addiction is emotional first and then physical.  Long before our bodies  crave the relief from restricting or purging or alcohol or drugs or whatever the addiction, our minds do.  Our minds crave the relief from the craziness of life, from the pain of our emotions.  We cater to our minds and emotions and then without warning and very quickly the physical body is completely addicted.

It would make sense to just stop.  But in the middle of the addiction, it doesn't make any sense.  To someone on the outside it seems so obvious.  To someone stuck it is terrifying.  To just stop means to have no way to cope with the pain of life.  To just stop takes away the illusion of control that you think you have.  

If making sense of it all were enough, if being logical and reasonable and rational were enough, no one would need treatment centers.  We wouldn't need help.  If being logical were enough, it wouldn't be a disease, it wouldn't be an addiction, it wouldn't be an issue at all.




 I have always been emotional, very emotional. I also grew up in a home where being emotional was bad.  I tried so hard to not be emotional.  I tried to keep all of those emotions inside so that I wouldn't get in trouble for having them.  The harder I tried to not feel my emotions, the more depressed and angry I became.  And when I say angry, I mean seriously rage filled.

As an adult finally facing the past, there have been a lot of emotions.  I've blogged about this before but there have been times that I have had to feel some of the pain of my past and I thought the emotions would carry me away.  I thought they would kill me.  I had bottled the tears for so very long that I was convinced that I would never stop crying if I started.

The flow of emotions started at an intensive therapy weekend.  Our assignment was to cry.  Yep, cry.  I thought they were crazy.  I curled up under my blanket and made myself cry.  As I cried I felt things I had never before felt.  The words I found myself saying were, "Why wasn't I worth protecting?"  And I mourned not so much the loss of innocence but the feelings of being too insignificant to protect.

Since that point I have really actually had to feel some of the things I have run from my entire life.  Just this past fall I ran into something I had been running from since I was about six.  I thought feeling this was going to kill me.  It hurt more than I have ever hurt before.  I didn't think the pain would ever end.  I know why I use my eating disorder for comfort.  When I focus on my food, on my body, I have something tangible to concentrate on.  I can avoid feeling when I am restricting.

It took every ounce of my strength to stay in the moment and keep feeling that.  Every instinct said to run hard and fast from that intensity of pain.  I don't actually understand how it happened, but when I stayed present in the pain, I made it through the pain.  It didn't kill me even though for days I thought it would never end.  And now that memory is a memory, not a flashback.

I still struggle with staying present when I have big emotions.  My first instinct is to restrict, to not feel them.  Some of the things I have to face come with a lot of pain but now I know that the pain won't kill me.  I know that if I cry, eventually I will stop.  If I hold back my emotions they only get stronger and then they come out on their own without my permission in the form of horrible, angry, awful ways.

It is ok to feel.  It is good to feel.  It is ok that I am extremely emotional.  It is how God made me (for you Miers/Briggs people, I'm an NF, emotional to the very core of my being).  My emotions won't kill me and eventually, feeling them will bring healing not more hurt.

Monday, June 11, 2012



I was the best good kid who was always in trouble EVER.  I got in trouble for EVERYTHING.  As a little kid I got in trouble for walking around outside in a swimsuit with a wedgie.  I was maybe 8, I didn't realize I had my butt hanging out.  My mom said I was trying to be sexy and cut up and threw away my beautiful new swimsuit that I was so proud of.  I didn't even know what sexy meant at that point!

In junior high I would get in trouble when I would tell my mom about my day.  Inevitably someone I knew did something she didn't approve of and I would get lectured on why my friends were wrong.  I remember getting a poor grade on a test and getting yelled at.  I started crying and said, "I just screwed up, ok. I'm sorry!"  Then I got yelled at for saying screwed up (even though up until this point it had been just fine) because "It sounds too much like f-ed up". 

I got in trouble when I was suicidal.  Apparently I just wasn't spending enough time praying.  I got in trouble when I wanted underware with a cute pattern instead of white granny panties.  I got in trouble when I painted my nails dark blue with little moon and stars on them.  Obviously that meant I was in a cult.  You get it.  I got in trouble a lot.  I got in trouble for everything.

And the funny thing is, until my senior year of high school, I was a dang good kid.  I was a teacher's pet and a goody two shoes.  I always went by the rules. But I was always getting yelled at for something.  I was never going to attain the standard of perfection set before me so finally I gave up.

I got in trouble.  I started drinking, swearing, messing around with boys, smoking, and listening to music like NIN and Alice Cooper.  (You'd have to know my family to know how big the music part really was.  They threatened to break library cd's that they found in my room because it was not Christian music.)

I got in trouble even after those rebellious days were over.  I got in trouble when my dad stopped by the pool I was nannying at and saw me in a bikini.  The sad part is that I got in trouble for the wrong reason.  I got in trouble because I was wearing a bikini.  I should have gotten in trouble because my thighs didn't touch and my ribs could be counted.  Someone should have seen that I was in real trouble, not just parental trouble.  But no one did. 

I was in big trouble.  I was getting serious in my addiction to my eating disorder.  I didn't think I was in trouble.  I wore extra large shirts so no one else knew I was in trouble either.  At least, no one mentioned that they thought I might be in trouble, or even heading for trouble.  I thought I was hiding my illness.  As I look back on that time though, there is no way I was hiding it.  I just didn't have anyone in my life who would tell me that they saw the trouble I was in and the trouble I was heading for.

I wish someone would have explained it all.  I wish I would have understood why I was always in trouble as a kid and young adult.  I wish I would have known how much trouble orange would bring me.  I wish I would have understood then that the eating disorder was trouble not a best friend who keeps a secret and comforts a broken heart.  I don't know if that would have changed anything.  But maybe, just maybe, it would have.

Sunday, June 10, 2012



Honesty has always been easy and hard for me.  I tend to naturally lean towards being honest and yet I have been very burned by being honest.  I sometimes roll my eyes and tell Hubby that I'm a thirty something woman, on my own, married with a family of my own and yet I STILL lie to my parents. 

Growing up, honesty was frowned upon.  I realized early that my mom didn't want the truth, she wanted what she wanted to hear.  I got in trouble for any idea, opinion, or emotion that she didn't feel was the "right one".  I still to this day don't talk politics or religion with my mom.  I got tired of being told my thoughts are wrong, so I stopped sharing them.

I have for a long time though, with other people, held an open heart policy.  I may not always offer information but if you ever want to know anything about me, just ask, I won't lie.  I'm pretty open about most things in my life.  I tried to be honest when relapse hit.  I told some people I wasn't eating.  I didn't care that they wanted me to, I just cared that I had said it and therefore felt clear in my conscience because I wasn't lying.

I was still lying though.  I was claiming 200-400 more calories a day than I was actually consuming.  I was insisting that I wasn't sick.  I was sneaking exercise because Hubby had banned me from exercising.  He told me I wasn't getting enough calories to fuel my body for exercise and told me I wasn't allowed to exercise.  I would wait until he was in bed and then exercise for a couple of hours.  It was a lie but I couldn't make myself tell the truth, even though I still valued the truth and longed for the openness and honesty I had once lived.

In the early days of recovery I was honest with someone.  I was honest with my best friend.  I told her what I was doing when I was struggling with recovery.  I told her what I was doing that was keeping me trapped in my ed.  I told her what I did to hurt myself.  I told her because I desperately needed to verbalize it, to loosen its grip on me, to not let the secrecy build and become my enemy and the ally of my illness.  She left.  She was so angry with me, with how I was destroying my body, that she couldn't take it and she left me high and dry.  Being honest left me very broken.  I have only just last week ever told another person what kept me in bondage during that time.  I was afraid to be honest about orange, being honest had cost me my dearest friend.

I still treasure honesty.  I still tend to naturally lean toward the side of being too honest.  I know sometimes that will hurt me, but I also know that it isn't something that I ever want to change about myself again.  I don't ever want to get back to the point that I lie to everyone, even myself, to cover the pain I was feeling and the control that orange was gaining. 

In being honest, in sharing my struggles, I have grown.  In being honest, I have been able to talk to my dear friend who is battling her own food demons right now.  I have lost a lot, but I have gained so much more through honesty.  And I never plan to return to that girl who lied to give something the power to slowly kill me.


I've shared this before but it fits with the word today.  Hubby once told me that I was a fighter.  I laughed at him.  There is no way I was the fighter he saw.  I laughed and asked him why.

"Because if you weren't a fighter you would have married the abusive boy.  People who aren't fighters don't have the courage to get out of those kinds of situations.  If you weren't a fighter you wouldn't have waited for the man who would die for you."

I thought his words were kind, overrated but still kind.  I have come to realize he was right.  I am a fighter. I am a warrior.  Sure I left the boy who hurt me, but that isn't what I think makes me a fighter.  I'm a warrior because anorexia knocked me back on my ass and I am still getting up again.  I'm a fighter because depression, anxiety, and suicidal ideations have plagued me my entire life but I haven't let them beat me.  I'm a warrior because I have the strength to get up one more time than I fall down.

This was my favorite song when I was young.  I always felt a sense of calm when I heard it.  I always knew deep inside of me, no matter how broken I have felt, no matter how weak I have been, no matter what storms were going on in and around me, that I could run to His arms when I was battle-weary.

Thursday, June 7, 2012


Sincerity in my mind is synonymous with kindness.  It is being who you say you are.  It is meaning it when you ask how someone is.  It is caring.  It is gentle.  It is honest.  It is genuine.

I've always felt sincere.  I haven't always trusted others to be sincere though.  I believe people are who they say they are.  I believe what they say about themselves.  I just didn't believe when they said they cared about me though.  I never thought that I was worth caring about so I didn't trust the sincerity of others when they cared about me.

I think it is a little funny now though.  I believe the best in someone but I don't believe the best part that maybe they actually WANT to be around me, maybe they actually CARE about me, maybe their sincerity goes beyond themselves.

I treasure sincerity.  It is a quality in myself that I have always known.  Sincerity is a quality in others that I admire.  Sincerity is love in action.  It is how we truly bear one another's burdens.  It is how we restore each other.  And when we trust it in others, it is what restores us.


Crazy.  Hmmmm. What an interesting word.  I was always convinced I was crazy, I mean certifiably insane.  I've struggled with depression for as long as I can remember.  Most children don't struggle with depression and when I was a kid not as much was known about depression as is now.  I never felt like everyone else.  I thought that made me crazy.

When I was a teenager, no one explained how hormones make you feel crazy.  I mean my mom told me all about sex and my period and all of that but she failed to mention that hormones fluctuate and also contribute to your mood.  I didn't know that EVERY young girl bursts in to tears at random moments for absolutely no reason at all.  There always had to be a REASON to cry or be angry or feel at my house.  When there wasn't a reason, I thought I was crazy.  I had no idea that I had a case of hormone and depression induced craziness! 

I also grew up in a family that basically believed that bad things don't happen to good Christians.  And my mom also kinda believes, though she probably doesn't realize that she believes this, that if you don't acknowledge something, it never happened.  I have a very unique relationship with God.  I have since childhood.  It is amazing and it is beautiful.  I didn't always realize that it is amazing and beautiful because it didn't look like my mom's relationship with God.  I felt crazy because I felt peace when others felt panicked.  I felt crazy because bad things did happen to me so I must not have been a good Christian.  I felt crazy because I felt emotions that had been listed as "taboo" and unholy.

Now I use the word jokingly.  I tell people I'm crazy but I don't see it as a stigma or a bad thing at all.  We all have some areas of our lives that we feel a little crazy in.  I just tell people I know I'm crazy but that is why I love God, because He can make sanity out of my craziness.  My life is crazy.  I am a mom of 3 boysThat in itself makes me a little crazy.  Sometimes I feel like life is spinning out of control.  That feels crazy.  Everything is crazy but I'm ok with the crazy now.  I'm ok with it because I know I'm not the only person who feels crazy.  We all do.

"We all go a little mad sometimes, Sydney." ~Scream

Tuesday, June 5, 2012


This post really devoured me.  When I saw the word was power, everything inside of me recoiled.  And like that, with one word, I am now two days behind instead of one.

To me, power was what was used against me.  "If you don't do what I say the police officer in my family will tie you up naked on the swingset and leave you there."  "If you don't do what I say, first I'll beat you up and then he'll beat you up."  Power, in the form of sheer force, was how my attackers subdued me.

To me, power was what was far too often abused.  Power was the church telling me that my depression wasn't real but rather an indication of the sin in my life.  Power was the religious force of the day that used to tell me that I was not good enough, nor would I ever be good enough for the church or for God.

Power was what stole from me.  Power stole my innocence.  Power stole my voice.  Power stole my identity.  Power stole my desire for living.  Power stole my control.  And when power stole my control, orange came along by my side and gave me control again.

I gave MY power away to my eating disorder.  I let her abuse me just as much as other power had abused me.  Even as I have been recovering, I still saw power as a bad thing.  It has always meant the abuse of power. How could I blog about something so evil as power?

I had to read everyone else describing power in a positive light to have insight that I have never had before.  I suddenly realized that I have power, and it isn't bad or evil.  I have the power to recover.  I have the power to use my voice.  I have the power to live my life, not the life someone else dreams for me. 

Thanks Blogosphere.  Until I had to think about power, about how the word itself made everything in me pull back, I would have never realized what an important word it really is.  If I hadn't heard my friends talking about power as a good thing, I may not have stopped to really think about power and the true role it plays in my life.

Monday, June 4, 2012

Day 2 Invisible


I always felt invisible as a child.  I was certain that no one knew me, that if I disappeared that only my dad or Grandma Jody would miss me.  I only felt visible when I was in trouble.  I hated being in trouble though so being invisible seemed like a much better deal.  I've spent my life longing for people to really know me.

I never believed my husband when we were newly dating and he would tell me the guys that he specifically knew of who were jealous that he was the one I was dating.  Those guys never liked me, they didn't even know I existed!  Or so I thought.  Apparently I was the only one who knew I was invisible.

I was never invisible to Hubby.  He pursued me from the beginning.  Long before we dated I was what made his world keep spinning.  He was my best friend and he made me feel like a queen every time we were together.  I felt seen and known for the first time in my entire life when he came into my world.

I've always felt a little socially awkward.  The real struggle with invisibility though came during relapse.  I wanted my body to be invisible.  I wanted no one to ever see me or notice me.  I was embarrassed that I even needed a body and that I existed in a state of matter.  And yet, I so desperately wanted someone to see me.  I wanted someone to know how much I hurt.  I wanted to matter but I didn't want to be seen.  I wanted to be invisible the whole while begging for someone to not let me fade away.

I still sometimes feel like I want to fade away.  I still sometimes feel invisible.  I have found, though, that the more that I use my voice, the more that I stand up for me, the less invisible I feel and the less I wish to feel invisible. 

I hope I can be the hope that I once needed.  To see someone who feels unseen.  To know someone who needs to be known and is afraid to be seen.  To bring compassion and grace to someone who is hurt.  To care enough to not let someone else fade away.

Saturday, June 2, 2012

Day 1 Change

Change.  I could write an entire book about change. The moment you almost figure it all out, the game changes, the players change, the rules change.

Change was a big part of my life growing up.  We moved A LOT, and no, we weren't a military family.  My folks just couldn't stay put.  We moved houses in the same city often, moved to a far away city for a few months, moved back to the original city with two different houses in the year and a half that we lived there until we finally moved here to Denver.  And there were several new houses here as well, six in nine years to be exact.  Homes weren't the only inconsistency.  Almost nothing in my life was constant.

My body started to change and even though I thought I was the ugliest girl ever born, boys still took notice.  But not the boys I ever wanted to take notice, just the ones who saw my body as a way to fill their need without my permission.

My body changed again when I stopped eating.  The curves got smaller.  The complexion got worse.  It wasn't a good change, but it was definitely a change.

Change when I got married.  Learning how to keep a budget (still learning that one!), learning how to cook and clean (still learning those as well!), learning how to communicate when I was hurt and scared that communicating would make him love me less or worse, leave me.

Body change again when I started trying to get pregnant and practically overnight gained 20 pounds.  And then the curves that came with finally growing that sweet baby boy inside of me.  And then again and for good measure one more time.

Everything changed when I relapsed.  I lost friends.  I lost weight.  I lost hair.  I lost time.  I changed.  My relationships changed. My body changed.  My energy changed. Change.  Change.  Change.

Change in recovery.  Changing weights, changing perspectives, changing coping skills. More change.

Even today life changed again. A story for another day, though.

So really in the midst of far too much change, I have these bits of wisdom that I hold on to.
~ The only thing certain in life is change.

~Just when the caterpillar thought her life was over, she became a beautiful butterfly.  (That is a heck of a lot of change right there, and yet it brings beauty in the end)

and my current favorite
~Vision is what carries you through the pain of transformation.  (Yeah, go ahead and read that one again.  A few more times if you need.  It is that good)