Tuesday, January 26, 2010

1.26.10 Dear Body

Dear Body,
I’m a little bit frustrated with you. All week I have followed my food plan AND worked out and I didn’t lose any weight. I KNOW I did all I can to lose weight in a healthy way. I’m trying to be patient but really, I can’t stand being in this body any longer. I was doing really well with trying to accept you the way you are but now I am having a hard time with this all. It really has helped me to try to love you but now I am just frustrated. What do I need to change? I feel stuck because I can’t clearly think. ED is trying to step in and cloud my thoughts with his trash talk. ED wants me to listen to him and I am NOT going to do it. I’m stuck. What do I do now? I will keep working out and keep following my food plan and try to be patient. I guess I need to figure out why I’m doing what I am doing? Okay...the exercise part…I guess I AM 40 and if I don’t start staying active now, I’ll never be active and I really want my daughter to grow up seeing exercise as a part of life to stay healthy. I need to exercise for my health, both physical and mental. I know what exercise does to me mentally and how good I feel afterwards. Surprisingly, it’s the one thing I haven’t obsessed over and have managed to stay in balance. I also really want to run my first 5k this April. I am so scared of failing. I want to accomplish a goal that I have set out to do. It’s important to me to do this. It’s important that I am working out on many different levels. Now, I need to figure out the food part. ED is butting in and trying to get me to want to restrict. He wants me to think if I restrict then I will lose weight. I know better. THAT stopped working on me 2 yrs ago. I KNOW I have a better chance of losing weight if I eat balanced meals throughout the day. Restricting is only going to get me to want to binge. Why am I wanting to follow a food plan that doesn’t involve losing weight. Okay, I know…because it keeps me emotionally stable when I eat balanced. That is for sure. I can think better, I can concentrate much better, I think I am happier over all. Yes, there’s a part of me (big part) that is following my food plan so I can lose weight but it’s more than JUST that. Maybe I’ll always want to lose weight even when/if I do lose it but I don’t want the drama that goes with losing “just 5 more lbs”. That won’t get me happier. Been there, done that. I think these last few weeks while I have been writing you, I have been pretty damn happy. I was happy because I was being balanced in my life. I know it isn’t about being a certain number….I really am to THAT point in my recovery. But I am uncomfortable in my own body. I can’t ignore that part. I think it’s okay that I want to lose weight. I think it’s okay that I want you to respond back to me. I’m trying, will you now? It’s your turn!
Love, XXX

ps. I decided that I am not going to buy any more magazines for a year. It doesn't do US any good to look at those magazines. You know why. I don't think I need to explain. SEE? I really am trying to change for us. I WANT to love you. Hopefully in time. Maybe you are waiting to see if I am serious with my actions to get a response out of you. I can't force you to respond..all I can do is keep on trying. Maybe I'm just being impatient and need to give you more time. I'll try. You try too.

Sunday, January 24, 2010

1.22.10 Dear Body

Dear Body,
It’s late at night and I can’t sleep. When I can’t sleep I usually will lie in bed thinking about how I can change you. I don’t want to do that anymore. I don’t want to waste my time thinking about you changing. If you happen to change due to my training for my first 5k or change due to the fact that I’m following my food plan, then good. For the first time that I can think of, I am not wanting to change you and make you something that you aren’t. I do want to make you be the best you can be though. I want you to be healthy and strong. What I don’t want any longer is to be skinny with bones sticking out or fitting into a size 0. I am changing my perspective of what I want you to look like. I don’t particularly want you to look like anyone else…just like a healthy version of me. This sounds so simple, but you know what a big deal it is to me to change my vision of you. What I once wanted, I don’t anymore. I just want healthy. When people say to me, “you look healthy”, I don’t want to think what they really mean is “I look fat”. I want to think, yes…I look healthy as any healthy 40 yr old can be. Wow…I really feel like this is a major improvement with how I feel about you.
I am feeling a little better about you because are helping me run my first 5k. I am so scared of failing. But each day that I train, you show me that I can go a little bit further and a tiny bit faster than the day before. Doing something different with you is letting me see you in a different light. I don’t want to rock the boat too much so I’m going to stop thinking about this. At least I’m not thinking about changing you anymore. I’ll try to stop myself if I find that I am thinking that way. Deep down I really have changed I think. Yippee for me. Yippee for you too….
Love, XXX

Thursday, January 21, 2010

1.21.10 Dear ED

ED,
Stay the fuck away from my daughter. I will not let you anywhere near her. While you are at it, stay away from me too. I am trying not to give you the time of day or any energy so this is going to be short. You try to sneak your way into my life but it’s not going to work any longer. You are not welcomed any where near us. I just won’t allow you to manipulate me even one more time into thinking negative thoughts about my body. I’m almost on team with my body and then you won’t have a chance against us. Just stay away from me and stay the fuck away from my daughter.
XXX

Monday, January 18, 2010

1.18.10 Dear Body

Dear Body,

I got sad today...not at you. At ED. ED is being acting like a predator towards a young girl today. I was standing in line at a McDonalds and I overhead the young girl tell her mom how she had 700 calories today and her mom wanted to know how she knew that and she told her that she has added “them up” today. Her mom didn’t have anything to say back to her…..I got mad and told my husband about their conversation. Now the anger has turned to sadness because I am afraid of that young girl being my daughter in 8-9 years. I have to make sure that my daughter doesn’t get around ED. I need to protect her. ED is a predator and I can not have him anywhere near her. I need him out of my life to make sure he doesn’t get anywhere near her. Can you help me out a little? I need you to be a partner with me on this. I really want to fix our relationship so my daughter learns good body image and has a healthy self esteem. I NEED to have a good relationship with you and want to work on it together. I’ll do what ever it takes. Whatever it takes for the sake of my daughter. I will start doing affirmations. I will tell myself I love you and try to. I will take care of my body by nourishing it and not restricting OR overeating. I will workout in moderation. I will start to look back in my life and find out where we went wrong. I remember the first thoughts I had about you. I was 3 years old. I didn’t like that my tummy protruded and was rounded. I remember wishing I could cut the fat off. I don’t know if someone said something to me or if I was going through trauma related issues. I had to have an operation on my bladder and I felt so out of control and scared and no one explained anything to me what was going on or why I had to have a operation. I had to find something to be able to focus on and try to control. My little body got the focus. I was younger than my daughter is right now (she’s 4) and I remember hating my tummy so much. How sad. Poor little me. I have kind of known this but I haven’t walked through it. How do I go about letting this heal? I need to give affirmations to my little 3 yr old body. That might help some. Maybe I need to talk to my therapist about this. I’ll make an appointment with him tomorrow. I know I need to write a letter to ED and tell him to stay the hell away from me and my daughter. Okay body….maybe I never got a chance to know you or love you because I was so young when I decided not to like you. I’m sorry about that. It wasn’t your fault. I’m not going to blame myself either because I was only 3 and it was the only thing I could control or try to control at that time. I deserved for someone to tell me what was happening with the operation. I know my parents were only doing what was done back “then” and not talk about it. They loved me and wanted to protect me the best they could. I can now protect my own daughter and talk to her about what is going on with things. I can also empathize with being a parent and doing the best you can do.
Do I feel better? Maybe. Not sure. I feel like an adult though (which is good since I’m 40) trying to fix things from my past. That feeling of no control has so much to do with my stubbornness that I feel when it comes to having to give in. Even to you body…. I feel like I have to give in to make you healthy and it kind of pisses me off. The act of eating when I don’t want to or even stopping my eating when I don’t want to pisses me off. Having to workout to keep you healthy pisses me off. It makes me feel like a little kid who has no control. I feel defeated when I have to give in for what ever reason I have. Do I have to change this around? I am not sure how to change it around. Maybe if I don’t feel defeated when I give in then I wouldn’t mind giving in. Oh, I don’t know what I’m getting to. I know that’s one of the issues with my husband that I have which is giving in all the time on everything. There’s a part of me that kicks and screams before I give in because it’s such an uncomfortable process to give in. I need to look at this area more.
Hmmmm, I feel better. Maybe like I’m getting somewhere. Well, I know I feel bad for my little 3 yr old self and I imagine hugging myself and making myself feel safe. Just like I would with my daughter.
Love, XXX

Saturday, January 16, 2010

1.15.10 Dear XXX

1.15.10 Dear XXX

Okay…I heard you. You’re going to try. I am thinking that we may have a chance also. I am not sad anymore. I see that you are trying. You have been eating consistently and not binging or overeating at all. You have been exercising. You’ve talked to me and actually made somewhat of an effort to be somewhat nice to me. I’m happy you don’t hate me. But I do want you to like me. But you have to give in to me first. I don’t say that because I want to make you unhappy, I say that because I WANT you to be happy. Be good to me and I will be good to you in return. I know that you are happy that you’ve lost the tiniest bit of weight. You were good to me so I wanted to show you in return that if you treat me right, I’ll treat you right with regulating your body to where it should be. You just worry about doing the stuff you need to do to keep me healthy and I’ll get you there. Just worry about trying to exercise for at least XXX minutes a day X/times a week. Just worry about trying to keep your food groups and calories to XXX. Just worry about not restricting and not overeating. Just worry about how you are going to be nice to me just for today. Just do the basic things for me and in return I will get you healthy. I do a lot for you and don’t ask for much in return. Accept the things you can not change and change the things you can and pray for the wisdom to know the difference. Do all those simple things and I will make you happy. I promise. You can put down your stubbornness and realize that you aren’t giving in to me. You hate to give in. You need to quit fighting me and work with me. Try to be my friend. I’ll keep on talking nice to you, like I always have…don’t worry. It’s me who loves you. I also need love too though. Thanks for trying to be nice to me. I do appreciate it.

Love, Your Body

Tuesday, January 12, 2010

1.12.10 Dear Body

Dear Body,

I’m not sure what to say to you right now. When I disappoint others I tend to hide behind myself and not want to come out. It’s easy to know that I don’t like you but it’s not easy to disappoint you. I don’t wish you harm. It’s not like I hate you it’s just that I don’t like you. Not liking someone or something is different than hating. I feel bad. I don’t want someone to know that I don’t like them. I wouldn’t want the same thing done to me. So, why am I doing it to you? I’m sorry. I know it hurts to hear. I feel bad. I’ll change because there really isn’t a REAL reason why. There really isn’t. I mean, I can say it’s because you aren’t allowing me to be thin right now but it sounds so silly. Back to that superficial, shallow thinking and acting. That’s not who I am…that’s not how I think either…but it’s how I am treating you. I’m sorry. I don’t want to apologize without understanding why. If things are going to change for me and you, then I’m going to have to know why before I can change. I know this probably means going through our lifetime together and figuring out when and where it all started. Am I ready for this? I think so. But I don’t feel like doing any of it right now. I just want you to know that I’m ready and hopefully it won’t be much longer with our relationship the way it is. I really do want to change. I don’t want to hate you. I, in fact, want to love you and need you to know that there is a good chance of us working it out together. I know I really hurt you with Madison’s wish the other night. Again, I’m sorry. Yep, I want to change because I didn’t like acting shallow. I’m not proud of my behavior. I’m really willing to try and open up and have these conversations with you to understand and change. Honestly. It will be hard work but I will do it. There must be a part of me that loves you or else I wouldn’t do this. I hope that gives you hope.

I talked to my therapist today. Actually read him these letters that we are sending each other. My husband was there. In a way, I can’t believe that I was willing to read these letters to anyone at all. Why did I? I suppose it is because I’m serious about working things out with you. Maybe I need the support of my husband too. I need him to be there to catch me fall just incase something really horrible comes up while I’m figuring us out. I don’t suspect anything but who knows. I just think I have fear of going through the work. But I’m ready to do it. Just not today.

Love, XXX

Saturday, January 9, 2010

1.09.10 Dear XXX

Dear XXX,

You have made me really sad. No, it wasn’t the 2nd dessert bar you ate, or the not going to the gym for the 3rd day in a row….it was the wish that you wished for when your daughter said that she was wishing on a shooting star tonight. Out of everything in this world, and any wish that you could wish for, you said to yourself (us), “I wish I was skinny”.

What a very empty wish.

I just feel very sad. You are such a “in depth” person but you can be so mindlessly shallow. It’s actually ED who’s making you like that. That’s what ED does to you. He takes a complete whole person and strips them of any dignity. Please stop letting ED treat you like this any longer. You aren’t being fair to me. I do so much for you and instead of wishing on your daughter’s star for happiness, peace, health or love for not only you but for your family, you completely threw away a perfectly good wish. I hear myself shaming you so I am going to quit. I don’t want to hurt you like you hurt me tonight.

Your Body.

Friday, January 8, 2010

1.08.10 Dear Body

Dear Body,

Hey, if you help me out then I will help you out. I know that’s not how you play the game though. I’m trying to trick you into getting me thinner. Okay…here we go again…..I really want to treat you right and then I KNOW you’ll treat me right. I will try to not fool you and trick you into what I want. I’m sorry. I’m sorry that I try to manipulate you. If I treated you with respect first then I can expect to get treated right back. It’s me who has to change. I’m starting to see that now. I want to apologize sincerely because I’m really realizing this now. I will respect you by eating my food plan like I should. I will respect you by NOT saying negative things about you. I really want to get along and I am hoping that by ME starting out apologizing we can start to get along and work as a team. I CAN be a good team player. I know I need to prove it to you. Anyways, let’s just start off on a new foot. It’s me who has to change. I know that now.

Love, XXX

Thursday, January 7, 2010

Dear ED

I just found this letter to ED (the only one I’ve written in all these years of recovery) that I wrote a few years back in my journal. I think this was right after my daughter was born…. I’m going to read it and then keep ED out of the picture during this little journey that I’m embarking on. This is between me and my body and ED is NOT invited! He’ll just fuck things up if he’s involved. Here is the letter.

Dear ED,

You really are not my favorite at this moment. I don’t like what you do to me. I do not like the way I think or act when you are around. You are very manipulative and cause far too much confusion when you are around me. You make me misjudge myself and my body. You try to get me on your side and basically I’m tired of you. You’ve worn out your welcome. I am a different person now and do not want you here to mess things up for myself or my family. I need to show my daughter how to live and grow and you are not allowed anywhere near her. That means you need to go and leave me alone. I don’t want you back. I’ve grown into someone that doesn’t need you.

{don’t let the door hit your ass on the way out!!!}

Wednesday, January 6, 2010

Dear Body

Dear Body,

It's time for some radical recovery. This eating disorder just isn't an option any longer. You are too old now for this. It's a waste of time to engage in any ED behavior. I am going to write letters to you until you change. That's all there is to it. I don't love you but I really need to. So, I will talk myself into loving you. Deep down I WANT to love you but I've been cruel to you for so long that there really isn't emotion there. That's going to change because I am going to talk to you and get this figured out between us. I'd say that my life is 1/2 over with if you statically look at my age and I don't want to fight any longer. I want peace at the minimum. I want actual love at the maximum. I don't have either right now. This is another (yes, another) journey that I am embarking on but I think it's necessary. I’m forcing myself to love you no matter what. This is radical recovery. I’m not skilled enough at DBT for radical acceptance with you as my body so I am going to do radical writing (actually typing) which I think is the only way I can fully recover and put this behind me. Radical Recovery….it just might work. I hope you follow along with me and see if you notice any changes that I might not be noticing. I don’t know what else to do. There is nothing else to do except to have the courage to change the things that I can change. All I know is IT IS TIME for the ED to be done with. I made big strides when I learned how to separate myself from my eating disorder and now I need to put the pieces back together and love myself. I guess nothing bad can come from this, right?

Here’s a letter to my body while staying at the Anna Westin House for my eating disorder in May 2009: It felt like I was getting somewhere with acceptance after a month of inpatient. But sadly, it has gone away. Again. Anyways, here’s one letter TO my body and then my body’s response back to me… (these two really need to learn how to get along and live as ONE instead of two separate entities.)

Dear Body,

It feels foreign to me to write you a letter since I have rarely given you the time of day or any nice words to say. It’s only been a short while since I have decided to accept you. But now that I have, I want you to know that I’m going to try to love you and respect you. You have given me the best present someone could have and allowed me to have a baby. I’m sorry that I’ve been so cruel to you in the past but I vow that I’m going to change that. You deserve a lot of love and the kind of attention that is needed to continue the rest of our life together. You need to be nourished not only with food but with love. I promise that I will take care of you from now on. XXX needs someone to show her how to love her own little 4 year old body and it’s up to us to do that now.

My Body’s response:

Dear XXX,

Thank you for your last letter. I understand that you are trying to have a good relationship with me; however, I need to be honest with you and let you know just how bad you have hurt me. You have hurt me both physically and emotionally. In fact, certain times it was abuse. I do so much good for you and you do not appreciate it. I realize you are trying to change that. I want you to be able to treat me right so you can show XXX what it is like to be nice to her body. She will learn from you, so I hope you can show her and teach her that you only get one body in your lifetime.

I understand that it’s hard for you because you like to be a certain way but the way I want you is a little different. Since I am “the body”, I get to decide. Trust me and know that I’m not going to make you unhealthy. Quit fighting me and just let it go and accept that I’ll be fine the way I am. You worry about the things like happiness and let me worry about your size. Just keep doing what you are suppose to do and things will be fine. Trust yourself and trust me and realize that I want the best for you.