Eat to Live VII: Eating Disorder Recovery Support - Page 63 - VeggieBoards
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#1861 Old 10-19-2015, 05:12 PM
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((((Hugs)))) Naturebound! Try to stay hydrated, even if you can only eat ice chips or only hot lemon sugar water. Probably the ICD 10 virus.... everyone at my work is cranky and overworked over the switch, especially the docs. :/
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#1862 Old 10-19-2015, 05:52 PM
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((((Hugs)))) Naturebound! Try to stay hydrated, even if you can only eat ice chips or only hot lemon sugar water. Probably the ICD 10 virus.... everyone at my work is cranky and overworked over the switch, especially the docs. :/
Thanks LedBoots! I will do that.

And thanks for the good laugh! So true, ICD 10 is really slowing us down a lot too and there are a lot of kinks in the system to work out. That just adds to the overwhelmed feeling. Even the seasoned coders are ready to pull their hair out!

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#1863 Old 10-28-2015, 12:10 AM
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Wonderful tips....
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#1864 Old 10-31-2015, 06:53 PM
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I wrote the following excerpt in 2013 when I was very sick and fighting my ED. I have come a VERY long way since then, but during the time I wrote that excerpt, I was already tentatively fighting to get better. At any rate, I was looking at that letter tonight because I had a really really rough week and am battling some depression right now and I am totally exhausted from working 50 hours per week and I needed some encouragement. I had forgotten all about it until now. I hope maybe this can help someone else in the midst of an ED.

Letter From My Body To Me

Dear Elaine,

I am stronger than you are. That said, I will never take advantage of you. You need to know that and to trust me. I only ask that you provide me rest, food, energy, warmth, and protection from harm. If you think I am fighting you, it is because you deny me these basic necessities. But my will to survive...to thrive...is stronger than yours. I am highly sensitive to changes, very finely tuned, and I am wired to make adjustments in response to them. If you starve me I have no choice but to slow my metabolism and send out hunger signals. If you deny these I have no choice but to adjust insulin and leptin. If you still deny me I have to slow down even more to conserve energy and body heat. I have to make you tired, dizzy, cold, because I have to redirect heat to my vital organs. If you do not provide me with enough body fat, I have to grow lanugo. If you purge, I have to fight to maintain electrolyte equilibrium. I have to take calcium and other minerals from nonessential places and pull them into the blood, sacrificing my bones in the process to save your life. If you work me too hard, I have to cause inflammation and soreness in the muscles. Without the materials to build muscle, I can not keep up with your demands, try as I do. I have to make your mind tired. I can not and will not sit idly by and let you destroy me without a fight. I do this not because I am trying to make your life miserable, but because I love you and I want you to thrive. You can not thrive without a body to live in. We have to make that clear first.

I can not be the body you want. I know you hate my short waist, the shape of my hips and butt, my narrow shoulders, my naturally round face. I am not perfect either. I have a dysfunctional thyroid, an intolerance to chemicals and foods and drugs and some hormones. I don't adjust well to foreign substances in my body. I don't trust them. I demand that you treat me well and give me only what is natural and healthy and I can be quite temperamental when you do not cooperate. I may be more demanding than other bodies. I responded to assaults on my body with endometriosis and I know that it was scary for you. I even forgive you for the loss of my ovaries and uterus and cervix. I have slowly adjusted, and as long as you can find a way to provide me with the hormones I need to function, I will do my best to work around not having organs that would have made that job easier. Though I am demanding, I am not inflexible. I have withstood a lot of abuse from you but still I fight to bounce back because I love you and I need you as much as you need me. Your demands of me are exhausting though. I am pleading with you to treat me better while we can still work with each other. My bones are deteriorating. My joints are not as lubricated as they once were. I am aging and this you can not deny or change. I want to continue to take you places, to be there for you in twenty or even forty years from now. You can make this possible if you simply provide me with the basic needs I have asked for. We have to live together, as hard as that is sometimes. Let's find a way to make it work, to get along, to find peace and acceptance with our imperfections. I know it will not happen overnight, but the less you fight me, the more I can give you. I can not guarantee I will not build more fat. I know it is your number one fear. But without it I can not provide you with energy, warmth, muscle, protection, repair of damage. I can give you only so much. I wish you could remove all the misconceptions about this part of me. I wish you could let go of cultural beliefs and attitudes and your fear of judgment from others and your fear of loss of control and your fear of identifying as a woman. You can not deny your very nature. And just so you know you are not in control right now anyway. You are controlled by your fears and self consciousness and thoughts and by my imbalances even. There is so much more of life for you to embrace and discover if you can let go of these. And I know you are as exhausted as I am. Lets not make this a race to see which of us collapses first. Lets try to find a way to make peace ok?
Love
Your body

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#1865 Old 10-31-2015, 07:23 PM
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((Naturebound)), that was beautiful. Thank you for sharing something that intimate and personal with us. It sort of makes me want to let my body write a me letter, too.
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I just dropped in to see what condition my condition was in.
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#1866 Old 10-31-2015, 11:38 PM
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Elaine, that was gorgeous. Thank you. <3
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#1867 Old 12-02-2015, 01:19 AM
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MODS! please can you remove the above post. It is not appropriate for the ED thread ...
Thanks.
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#1868 Old 12-02-2015, 05:09 AM
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Thank you Mods!
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#1869 Old 01-14-2016, 01:37 AM
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I'm stressed out by a lot of stuff going on - my natural reaction to this is to stop eating. I say natural because this has been my reaction since I was a toddler.

I'm stressed by things I can't control - so I obsess about what I'm eating.

I'm stressed by the fact that I really need to gain some weight - so I'm obsessively weighing myself.

I'm stressed by the fact that I'm not gaining weight (probably because I'm stressed and see above) ....

I want a holiday from my brain.
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#1870 Old 01-14-2016, 02:03 AM
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I'm stressed out by a lot of stuff going on - my natural reaction to this is to stop eating. I say natural because this has been my reaction since I was a toddler.

I'm stressed by things I can't control - so I obsess about what I'm eating.

I'm stressed by the fact that I really need to gain some weight - so I'm obsessively weighing myself.

I'm stressed by the fact that I'm not gaining weight (probably because I'm stressed and see above) ....

I want a holiday from my brain.
HUGS
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#1871 Old 01-30-2016, 04:39 AM
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Thought I would drop by here and vent a little.

For those in recovery from an eating disorder, do you ever feel like the world around you wants you to be sick? It sometimes takes an incredible amount of inner strength to fight against the tital wave of an eating disorder, and sometimes it seems like everywhere around you information feeds that tital wave and wants to pull and suck you into it. Everywhere you go, people are talking about losing weight, eating too little, cutting out this or that, exercising for hours on end.

You don't get praised for taking care of yourself even when it is incredibly hard to do. The rewards for knowing your body and what you need to be healthy and focusing on that are not always obvious. They can't be easily measured and quantified like losing or gaining weight can. I don't feel like my energy level is hugely different than when i was sick. Maybe I sleep a little better, and don't think about food or the scale or my body 24/7 like I once did, so I have more time to focus on my work and other activities. But I still have my bad days, my low energy days, periods of anxiety and fear and so on. That doesn't go away with being healthier.

In approximately two months I will be getting my next DEXA scan to see if my bone density has improved since getting to a near normal weight and being on an osteoporosis med for the last two years. I put so much hope into this scan and the results. Thinking, if the numbers improve, it will all have been worth it. But what if the numbers are the same or worse? Then what? It scares me. I don't have the chronic bone pain I used to though. I last noticed chronic hip pain about a year ago and then I stopped noticing any and the change was subtle but suddenly I realize this. It's those little subtle changes you don't even notice, or take for granted. I think the osteoporosis med has helped too, but I want to believe it is because I eat more and have put on weight and that my body is healing.

On a totally different thought/vent, I visited Facebook yesterday and a not so close friend I have on there who I met on an eating disorder recovery forum many years ago posted something that disturbed me. I know this woman is still sick herself. And sometimes I don't think people who are still sick realize how they come across to others or what they reveal about their thoughts/beliefs in their actions. I worry that maybe to some degree I post triggering things too without realizing it. At any rate, she posted about a friend of hers who is very very sick with her anorexia. She posted a photo of this woman who was terribly emaciated, along with describing just how thin this woman is (gave her exact height, weight, bmi etc). She was pleading for donations to help this woman get treatment she otherwise couldn't afford.

And while I felt really bad for this woman (and I totally understand how expensive eating disorder treatment is having had to pay over $9000 out of pocket myself for it and fighting insurance denials with appeals even from my doctor) I couldn't help but have some thoughts and feelings myself that maybe bother me to some degree. I wonder why it is so important to include such intimate details about someone's weight and bmi when discussing their disorder. Is this woman more deserving of help than someone who maybe isn't as emaciated? Is she any more dangerously ill than someone who maybe purges ten or twenty times a day, or exercises seven hours a day but is a normal weight? Or someone who is suicidal because she hates her "normal" body so much? Was it really necessary? And the second thought was to want to dismiss the seriousness of my own ED history because I never reached that level of sickness (as if there really is a quantifiable "level" of sickness). I feel like when this sort of thing is posted, it devalues my own experience. It sets a bar. If you are "this" sick, you are just a whiner and it's all about vanity. But if you are "THIS" sick, it is true anorexia bla bla. I felt a little angry at the author of the plea, but maybe a little compassion too because she is stuck in that mindset that is so hard to get out of.

It seems my bone density results are the only quantifiable "reminder" of what I put my body through. Maybe that's a good thing though. I escaped worse. Then again of course that little voice still inside me sometimes says maybe I could do it all again if I escaped the worst of the damage the last few relapses. It would be so easy to watch the numbers go down and live that high and numbness of hunger and self hatred and punishment. In fact the world encourages it, is in awe of those who can fast and starve and exercise themselves into the ground and be "disciplined". People compliment thinness, trust me. They don't have to know the secret shame of throwing away good food instead of eating it, or purging, or uncontrollable binges, or laxatives by the dozens, or hours of meal planning and counting calories, fat, measuring every grain of salt and and weighing every ounce of food. Of sacrificing friends and precious time with family because exercise and avoidance of eating are more important.

But I still keep at it, keep taking care of myself as much as I know how to , though I am so careful at it. The fact that I can recognize and challenge the feelings/reactions I have when I come across "triggers" and still stay on a careful but healthier path maybe is a subtle sign that life is better in recovery and I am coping better than I think I am. I won't fool myself that I am totally recovered and have moved on from this disorder. I still have "habits" I haven't broken, and still try to control some things. I still have huge misconceptions about my body, and dislikes. I still sometimes define my worth by my athletic ability or success at work or weight range. And I fail every time when I allow myself to define my worth this way because there will ALWAYS be someone better at it and I will never be good enough. I don't have to be special to experience all that life has to offer, and to have self worth.

In the end, only kindness matters. - Jewel



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#1872 Old 01-30-2016, 05:52 AM
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I do not have any experience with ED. I just want to say, from what little I know of you from the Internet, you are an amazing human being.


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#1873 Old 01-30-2016, 07:15 AM
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**** weight loss culture. If no one else is praising you for taking care of yourself, then I will. You are a brave, beautiful, kind, intelligent woman and you deserve better than to be tormented by something so trivial as weight.
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#1874 Old 01-30-2016, 02:25 PM
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Not like the world wants me to be sick - but like it's subtly encouraging me. Especially as a woman you're encouraged to look a certain way - and everything is set up to reward that compliance.

It's hard to let go of the praise and wanting the praise for looking a certain way.

I struggle with body dysmorphia - what I see is very different to reality. I have more flashes these days of what I actually look like and it sort of freaks me out. I see photos of myself from a year ago and I'm shocked. But I also remember people around me saying really positive things about what I look like.

It's very messed up in my head any way.

Naturebound - just remember you're doing really well. You're aware of what's going on and you can take steps to push yourself on to a better path. I hope your results come back hugely improved.
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#1875 Old 01-30-2016, 06:59 PM
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Thanks guys!

Shallot,

I have terrible body dysmorphia also. And mind/personality dysmporphia as well. :/

In the end, only kindness matters. - Jewel



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#1876 Old 01-31-2016, 02:18 AM
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Not like the world wants me to be sick - but like it's subtly encouraging me. Especially as a woman you're encouraged to look a certain way - and everything is set up to reward that compliance.

It's hard to let go of the praise and wanting the praise for looking a certain way.

I struggle with body dysmorphia - what I see is very different to reality. I have more flashes these days of what I actually look like and it sort of freaks me out. I see photos of myself from a year ago and I'm shocked. But I also remember people around me saying really positive things about what I look like.

It's very messed up in my head any way.




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#1877 Old 04-02-2017, 06:12 PM
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Does anyone actually eat a normal amount of food anymore? I called my own mother to have a friendly chat since I hadn't heard from her in a long time, and she told me she is on a diet eating 800 calories per day. I got mad at her and concerned because that is a starvation amount. I told her I have been there done that and IT DOESN'T WORK. Your metabolism slows to a grinding halt and when you do try to eat even a few hundred calories more after weeks or months of eating that little, it piles on very quickly. She got mad at me for not being supportive of her. WTF? She knows I have battled with an ED for years, have worked very very hard to get healthy. Why does she continually pull this crap on me? She yelled at me years ago for eating so little but it's ok for her to do this? It doesn't matter that she is obese. It is still way too little for ANYONE.

She also said she is eating meat twice a day and how bad veganism is because you can't get enough protein. Sighs. And she justified it by saying she buys all organic chicken and fish so it's ok. One minute she is gung ho wanting to go vegan and the next she is on to some other diet. Am I an awful person for not being able to pretend to be supportive? it's just the same old **** over and over with her.

Is it any wonder I want to wear my mp3 all day every day and just tune out the world? :/

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#1878 Old 04-23-2017, 05:32 AM
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Hi guys,

I've battled different varieties of ED's for about 8 years now.

Veganism helped me beat my first ED. But since then I've just been eating more and more, uncontrollably... most of the time not vegan either.

Now I want to include more vegan food in my diet, I've been veggie for ages so it's not a huge change but I feel like it's still a challenge but it's the right way to go.

Anyway thought I would drop in and say HI!
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#1879 Old 04-23-2017, 06:07 AM
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Hi guys,

I've battled different varieties of ED's for about 8 years now.

Veganism helped me beat my first ED. But since then I've just been eating more and more, uncontrollably... most of the time not vegan either.

Now I want to include more vegan food in my diet, I've been veggie for ages so it's not a huge change but I feel like it's still a challenge but it's the right way to go.

Anyway thought I would drop in and say HI!
Quote:
Originally Posted by laces View Post
Hi guys,

I've battled different varieties of ED's for about 8 years now.

Veganism helped me beat my first ED. But since then I've just been eating more and more, uncontrollably... most of the time not vegan either.

Now I want to include more vegan food in my diet, I've been veggie for ages so it's not a huge change but I feel like it's still a challenge but it's the right way to go.

Anyway thought I would drop in and say HI!
Hi laces and welcome back! I am curious, how did veganism help you beat your ED the first time?

I am always interested, because for me it was actually a challenge when I went vegan to not be triggered back into full blown ED. I went vegan for ethical reasons, not health (though meeting my health needs was and is important too), and I was worried about the effect of restricting type of food on my ED, and of course I lost too much weight in the beginning which was a trigger, and eventually I did relapse into anorexia and eventually bingeing/purging (though I stayed vegan through this and through recovery). It took many years as a vegan to get to a place of balance with food (something I still work at), but of course EDs are about much more than food, so this is only one aspect.

I'd love to hear more about your story! But if you don't want to share more I would understand that too. Thanks for posting!

In the end, only kindness matters. - Jewel



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#1880 Old 07-12-2018, 02:16 PM
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Thanks VB...

Hi all!
I logged back in this morning after a year long experiment eating meat and was going back through old posts and found one from me from 2010 about how I had a low bmi (I am MUCH lower now) and was concerned and had been scared of food for about 5 years at that point and how unhappy I was...
I have been struggling to gain weight after breastfeeding because all kinds of psychological blocks are cropping up and reading that post and realising I had struggled for ALMOST THIRTY YEARS with food and now have a beautiful baby and life ahead and just need to seize it all has absolutely vanquished that in an instant (I think...).
So here goes. I am gonna eat all the things.

And i look forward to sharing thoughts with you guys. x
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#1881 Old 07-13-2018, 05:12 AM
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Hi greenie25!

I have not been on here in a long time either. I am the farthest I have come in recovery so far. I was strict vegan for 6.5 years, and then, to fight the rules in my head and my eating disorder, I started including eggs and dairy in my diet. I was also low on some lab tests during my last year of being vegan which disturbed me, and I was feeling tired all the time. I didn't feel much different as a vegetarian. Last December I began to include fish in my diet, and my tiredness vanished. My labs are much better (specifically ferritin and hemoblobin as well as sodium which was rock bottom normal for a while). I am able to eat out more, socialize around food because food is no longer the focal point, eat more all around. I have fought tooth and nail to overcome many obsessive compulsive rules and tendencies, and it was very very hard to give up being vegan but I felt it was necessary (for me personally) in order to overcome some obstacles, and frankly desirable in my last year of being vegan. I started taking ballet/pointe classes again since last year at a well known ballet school and have even performed on stage to an audience of over 1000 people! My weight has increased a little but not a huge amount, and I have been maintaining a healthy weight for a few years now. I am still battling my disorder on a mental level and accepting my body as it is is still a daily work in progress. Because I am no longer vegetarian (I eat fish 1-3x week on average), I have been refraining from visiting or posting on all the old vegan/vegetarian forums I used to belong to. But i saw your post notification in my email so i felt I needed to come here and share. If it is not allowed and my post is deleted, I will understand. This has all been a very strange experience for me. I thought I would be vegan for life, and I was very committed for a long time. But I began to do some serious soul searching and had health concerns and I began to question if it was right for me (yes i understand I am putting myself before animals who do not have a choice). I have changed a lot in my beliefs and practices, but still try to do the best I can where I can without compromising my recovery. It can not be black and white, all or nothing with me. I have had to find balance to make everything work.

It's taken me a long time to even be able to share this publicly because the shaming and harassing comments from some vegans was fierce when I first began to come out about my change. But many people have been very kind to me too, vegans included and in my circle of vegan Meetup local group, and have accepted me the way I am. Nothing in life is static. We do what we need to do to survive, thrive, move forward...This is not to say that someday i won't be stronger and able to try being vegan or vegetarian again. For now I have needed to not be so restrictive. I still can not bring myself to eat any other meat besides fish, and maybe that's ok for me for now. I'm still figuring out if it is because of ethical beliefs, because I am put off by the taste and smell, or because of my eating disorder. Funny how it is not clear at all as we might think it is when ED clouds everything.

greenie25,

I think it is amazing that you have a beautiful child now, congratulations! I hope you are able to get past any roadblocks so that you can live life to it's fullest and enjoy seeing the life you created grow and experience life. Eating disorders are so hard to overcome, but sometimes it's all about baby steps. Sometimes the big picture is too overwhelming and too much to think about. More and more I have been embracing a one day at a time approach. I battle severe osteoporosis (which has improved immensely over the last few years but not without the help of weight gain, less restrictive diet, and prescription meds) and when I think about my future it scares me because I am only 46. So I am trying to do everything I love to do NOW, and embrace life while I still have mobility and very little pain. And life goes so fast!

I hope you can find the strength to fight and find recovery. Many hugs to you!

In the end, only kindness matters. - Jewel



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#1882 Old 07-19-2018, 12:12 PM
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Oh me oh my, I want to reply and I was also debating including fish!
I can't reply yet though. Bother. But just...SO many congrats and power vibes to you. So much love.
Please email me if you like at any point. It's a hard road but life is worth it, my dear!
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