Face Your Emotions & Become Strong

I had a groundbreaking event happen this weekend. I’m not going to go into much detail but the main points are: It was a very important event/experience, once in a lifetime (more or less), and I truly have no regrets.

And I’ve spoken to close friends about it and gotten their opinions, and I’ve thought about it on my own and tried to dissect my feelings around it. And all the while, people around me keep moving. Work comes and goes, my family calls and checks in on my health and how my adjustment is going as I get ready to move back to my parents’ house.

But nobody notices I’m going through something inside of me. And I guess that’s normal, I’m used to hiding things from people. But this is something that I’m battling with. A part of me wants to share it with the word, but another part of me wants to keep it quiet. And a whole other part of me is hurt and destroyed by it. 

A part of me wants to shout “HEY CAN’T YOU GUYS SEE I’M GOING THROUGH SOMETHING HERE?!” 

But I know they wouldn’t hear me. And I know they don’t need to. Because right now I need to be looking inside of myself. All these signs around me, from songs, to television shows, to books, are telling me to step back, step inside and really see what’s going on. Why I’m feeling the way I am, whether it’s good or bad, and what it means for me. It by no means defines me, but it changes my outlook on things a little bit. 

I’m a very emotional person. And sometimes I hate that about myself. But a close friend recently told me something I need to realize – that part of me, the over-emotional, slightly dramatic and romantic part of me, is the best part of me, and it’s what life is all about. 

I don’t enjoy being the dramatic one, the one who needs help, the one who is damaged. But that is who I am. I’m severely damaged. To a point most people don’t understand. I’m the one who has my therapist on speed dial. I’m the one who has learned so much about her diseases that she could diagnose someone off the street (though I wouldn’t try to). 

And all of this – these parts of me, they add up to something, I guess. Me. I’m stronger for what I’ve come through. And it’s because I’ve learned to face my emotions. I’ve learned to tap into myself and really feel what is going on in my body and mind and then address it. I wasn’t cutting because it was fun. It was either because A. I was broken and depressed I wanted to feel some other form of pain, or B. I was so numb that I wanted to feel anything. I covered and hid my emotions to the point of self-destruction. And I couldn’t stop until I faced the reason I started. And that began with my emotions. Those scary, brutal, beautiful things that we have to deal with from day to day.

But they make us who we are. We press forth, we feel them and we become stronger. So please. Give yourself a chance to feel what your body is trying to tell you. 

Have a beautiful day, xx.

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Self-care on the road to Self-Love

We’ve all heard it before: nobody will be able to truly love you until you love yourself. 

I never knew if this was true or not, because I’ve loved friends who don’t fully love themselves yet. So maybe it’s time we change this saying around a bit. Nobody will fully love you until you TRY to love yourself.

TRY is a huge word to me. 

You can say you’re going to do your homework or get good grades; you can say you’re going to start eating better; you can say you’re going to keep up with your blog ;)…but it doesn’t matter unless you TRY. 

Self-love doesn’t come overnight. As you know if you’ve read my past blogs, I’ve never been one who has completely loved myself until recently. I was destroying myself slowly through starvation, bingeing and purging, and self-mutilation. Even though I somehow thought it was going to make everything better, I was NOT in a loving place with myself. 

But I got up every morning. And I TRIED. I sought out the help I needed, and I took the advice of my friends, family, and doctors. I TRIED every day to feed myself nutritious foods and put down the razor blade. And it was fucking hard. And it took a long time. It took relapses, and medication increases and days that I didn’t want to live. But guess what? I’m here. I’m a live and I LOVE MYSELF IN THIS MOMENT. 

I wish I could give you a step-by-step manual on how to get there. But I really can’t. But I do know that it starts and continues with self-care. I took the care to get help, but I also took the care to forgive myself when I relapsed or had a bad thought. Today, I take care to watch the content of what I put into my body – not in numbers of calories or fat grams but in wholesomeness – what chemicals am I ingesting? Is this a food that’s going to nourish me and benefit me?

I no longer strain myself at the gym – seeing as I HATE the gym. I practice yoga daily, I run around outside with the dog, and I walk frequently.  I get in my 30-45 minutes of moderate activity a day and I remember to treat myself well. If I’m tired, I rest. If I’m hungry, I EAT. Even if I just ate two hours ago. I eat something delicious and wholesome that will keep me full and do something great for my body.

I’m not saying that it’s easy, because it’s not. I’m saying that it’s possible, and it’s so worth it to say that you love yourself in this moment. 

Have a Beautiful day, xx.

Four Rules of Recovery

Today I just wanted to touch on something that has been on my mind recently: recovery. Now obviously recovery can mean a ton of different things. Usually it’s pertaining to an addiction of some kind. Food, drugs, sex, love, etc. After being in and out of recovery for several years myself from eating disorders to self-harm, I’ve learned a few things. And I’ve come up with my top 4 most important things to remember when in recovery, whatever your addiction or illness.

1. You’ve gotta WANT it. 

I don’t care if you have the best doctors at the best inpatient treatment center in the state, country or world. If you don’t want recovery, you’ll never get it to stick. Between the ages of 17 and 21 I was in and out of “recovery” more times than I can count on my hands. I’ve had four different therapists, and tried every method I could realistically attempt. Nothing stuck as long as it has this most recent time around. And you know why? I finally told somebody “I WANT HELP.” Personally, my issues with food and self-harm revolved around my crippling depression so once that got under some control I was able to focus enough on the other issues. But it never happened until I finally decided I wanted to get better and be free from my addictions.

2. Relapse is a Part of Recovery

Don’t feel guilty. During your recovery you will most likely slip up. Whether it’s in your thoughts or your actions, you could very easily fall back into negative patterns. You may start to feel guilty and worthless and then it becomes a vicious cycle. So I’m telling you now, relapses happen and it’s OK. Don’t get down on yourself too much if you find yourself eating that extra piece of pie and wanting to throw it up. Don’t throw away your recovery because you had a shitty day and made one cut. Just go to sleep, pray for a better day and try again when you wake up. Sounds to good to be true, right? It wont be easy, I’m not saying it will be. But if it was easy, would it be worth it? Recovery SUCKS. It is the hardest thing you will ever do in your life. However, it is so unbelievably rewarding that you’ll wonder how you survived so long without it. You’ll wonder how you spent so long not seeing the true beauty and love of the world.

3. Put It Out In The World

Live your recovery. Write it down. Blog about it, journal about it. Write an anonymous article about it for your school paper. Go to an AA meeting, tell a close friend. Pray about it, meditate on it. By putting your recovery in the world you bring it to life. It’s so much harder to go back on your decision to stay in recovery if there are people relying on you. If you have meetings to attend and family members you want to see at ease. And by putting it into the universe, the universe recognizes that you’re serious about it and are ready, and she’s gonna back you up!

4. Adjust Your Environment Accordingly

It’s not going to do you any good if you’re a recovering drug addict still hitting the same clubs with your junkie friends. That’s just logic. I’m not saying that you have to cut ties with them. But (and this brings step 3 into play as well!) if they can understand that you’re trying to better your life, then they can live without you for a few months or years. If they can’t accept that, clearly you need to change your friends. It sounds harsh but if someone doesn’t have your health and happiness in mind, they don’t care about you and you shouldn’t make them a priority. During recovery it’s OKAY to be selfish and change your surroundings to fit your needs. Clear out negativity by getting rid of old clothes, books, and items you don’t need. Find peaceful ways to reorganize your life. Little changes around you will help your mindset to be clear and focused on your recovery, not on the person you used to be.

I know this doesn’t even begin to cover all aspects of recovery in all of it’s forms. But these are things that helped me and that I truly believe are most important in any recovery. A spiritual practice is wonderful too (and also helped me tremendously) but that is obviously up to you. I prayed and meditated a LOT when I was first trying to recover. And that was the one constant throughout my journey of relapses until what I truly believe has been my final recovery.

Do I still have urges? Of course. Around my period when I have to increase my anti-depressants, sometimes I have such a horrible day I very nearly turn to self harm. I still keep “supplies” nearby. Probably going against rule #4 but, I’m still recovering and working on surviving without an unhealthy crutch. Even at my most balanced, I still trip up. But I no longer feel guilty. I accept that what I’m experiencing is legit and I just sit in it for a while. And then I let it go. I forgive myself and say that it’s OK. I didn’t act negatively and I can still change my thoughts.

So take what you can from this, and leave what you can’t. Have a beautiful day. xx.