A lot to update on

It's been a while since I've made a post (at least it feels like it). A lot has been going on, and I haven't really known where to start.

I guess first things first, I'm moving back home at the end of the week. I don't want to get into details (but you're welcome to ask me personally), but living situation I currently am has not been healthy for my physical or mental health lately. As my therapist would put it, it's "toxic" for me. I think the word choice was a little harsh, but I have to degree. My mental and physical state has declined. I can't blame it all on housing, but a lot of the things going on in our house have contributed to the stress and overwhelming thoughts and triggers that have been destructive towards my recovery. I'm anxious about moving home, but at the same time I'm hoping it may be a fresh start to get back on track. After all, I always feel good after visiting with my family.

I started seeing a new dietitian, Lindsey, who I've found tremendously helpful. She challenges me in ways I can't explain. For instance, she won't just take an answer from me and leave it at that, she tries to get me thinking. Example, I compulsively weigh myself, over 20x a day. She asked why I need to know the number that many times, and I told her it makes me feel less anxious about my weight. And she asks, "why?" And when I give an answer (or try to), she then asks again, "why?" She really challenges my thought process. She also doesn't go easy on me at all (but yet she's really encouraging at the same time). For instance, I did pretty bad last week in following my meal plan. There was one day I came close, but even then I didn't eat lunch. We talked about it for a while (like the whole session) while going over my logs, and she said that what I was doing was not acceptable. She knows it's hard, but she pushes me. She gave me a calorie range to aim for (because I'm so fixated on numbers, and the exchanges wasn't getting me far), and yesterday I actually met my goal! I don't know if I'm going to be able to do it again today, because I kind of freaked out over my weight. But at least I can say I did it once. And who knows, maybe I'll be able to do it again.

Therapy... well, to put it bluntly, my therapist wants me back in IP. I told her that wasn't going to happen, because I think I can do this on my own. But she's been very persistent about it. She then sent an email to my parents (and me) saying my entire team wanted me inpatient. I think I signed a release for her to talk to my parents, but still, I think that was a boundary she crossed. I'm not going IP, I don't need it, not now, and I think I can pull myself together. I decided I'm going to take a break from seeing Brenda for a while. Instead, I'm going to see a Christian counselor (she's not a therapist) because I think I need to try something new in terms of counseling/therapy, and I think faith needs to be a big part of my recovery. I'm not sure the frequency I'm going to see her, I'm still working that out with my parents. But I still have Brenda as a back up. She's going to see me once a month to check in with me and make sure I'm not back tracking and making some progress.

Finally, after lots of pressure from my team + advisor to withdrawal from the semester, I talked with my parents and we came to a compromise that I would drop 2 classes. I can technically only drop one class without withdrawing from the full semester (without a dean's exception), but my advisor thinks that with a medical note I'll get the exception. So my psychiatrist is working up a note for me to provide to the dean. The only downside is I'm not going to be graduating in December like I had hoped, but instead will be graduating in the Spring of 2016.

I think moving home, switching dietitians, change of pace with therapy/counseling, and dropping classes will really help in improving my current situation, mental, and physical.

Got to Step It Up

I've talked a little about this situation I'm dealing with that's causing a lot of stress and is impacting my recovery negatively. I can't go into details about it, or even say what it is, but I'm a little relieved because if things aren't resolved I have a back up plan in place. And not only is the back up plan going to be helping me out, but also a friend.

I don't think I mentioned it, but I started working at Children's National Medical Center yesterday as a volunteer. Ironically, I was told that many of the patients on the unit struggle with eating disorders. I don't think it's going to affect me negatively, at least at this point, because we don't really talk about the condition with the patients. I think the only thing that's going to be hard is not being like "I know this is hard, I can relate," or telling them that they don't want to live like this because an eating disorder in adulthood is nothing to be proud of and is such a barrier to living your life. If it does become a problem, I think I'll ask to switch units. But I think it'll be okay.

I'm meeting with my advisor this coming week, and I'm going to talk to her about taking an incomplete in two of my classes. I haven't talked much about the whole academic side of things, but it's been so overwhelming, and I'm getting so far behind I can't keep up. I'm missing assignments, and while I have a note from my psychiatrist to accommodate me, I feel guilty relying on that. I want to talk to my advisor about the possibility of taking some incompletes, and maybe working for my dad in the spare time I have to help with appointments.

I'm also trying to get myself back on track, because right now I'm on a really slippery slope. I talk a lot about how conflicted I am about recovery, and I am conflicted. But in the long run (I need to stop thinking about the now), I want to have a life. I want to work and be self-sufficient, and I want to enjoy my job and my life. I want to have a house, and maybe even a family. I can't do any of that with my eating disorder. I'm working on structuring my treatment team more, and creating my own "treatment program" outpatient, so that I'm getting daily support.

Right now I'm seeing my therapist every other week (which I should be seeing her weekly), dietitian every other week (again, should be seeing weekly), psychiatrist 1-2x/month, and my PCP once a month, and Dine weekly.

I'm hoping to step up my therapy and dietitian schedule to once a week, keep the dine monte nido, psychiatry, and PCP in place, but also add art therapy every other week, and meet with a Christian therapist as needed. I wanted to replace my current therapist with the Christian one, but I'm nervous about leaving my current therapist because she has done a lot for me and is great at advocating for me. But I feel like my recovery from my eating disorder largely relies on faith, and I struggle a lot with that.

I don't know. All of this is going to be hard to fit in, but I'm just considering it, and how I'm going to pay for it. But I think working for my dad will be helpful because he's currently looking for a sale's person, and I think I could help him out in the meantime while making some money to pay for things that I want to be responsible for.

People Are Mean - Why Do I Bother?

I found a dietitian that I interviewed, and I think we might be a good fit. We're scheduled to meet next Tuesday. It's pretty cool, we're meeting at Starbucks, not in an office building. So it will be more casual and laid back. I'm looking forward to seeing what she can do for me. But I'm also scared to commit to something, like following my meal plan, or challenging behaviors like weighing food. But I don't want an eating disorder forever, and I've already had it for a long time which makes it hard to overcome, but the longer I wait the harder it's going to get.

I got an anonymous message saying basically that why even bother getting a dietitian? And to give it a week before I start posting things like how I want to lose weight (I don't, but I do, I'm content at my current weight, weight is complicated), and how all I'm doing is seeking out validation for how sick I've been or can be.

I take messages like these really personally and to heart. Like is Anon right? Why bother? I don't want to recover, but I do. I want to want to recover. I'm scared t commit, like I said above. I'm scared to get rid of what has kept me safe. It's really what I know best, and changing what you know is scary. Why invest my time and money on something I'm not sure if I can commit to. Why not just wither away and die? That's the easy choice.

I want to believe that the dietitian can help me. But anon is right. Maybe I am looking for validation. Maybe I am going to continue to lose weight despite recommendations. Maybe I'm going to take the dietitians advice and throw it in the trash. Maybe this is a waste of time and money.

I don't know. I hate to live the way I do, especially knowing that I'm back tracking. But I hate to give up what I know so well, and what has helped me deal with my problems, and hide my emotions.

I did it

I don't want to say it was awful, but it really sucked. We went to Chevy's, and weren't really given an option of what to get other than the protein, which obviously I'm a vegetarian so I couldn't choose. On the bright side, the vegetarian option had no cheese in it, so that was a relief. It was still a ton of food, and I was over full. Like a 10 on the scale (10 equals stuffed beyond belief, 1 equals starving).

I went into the meal at a 2, because I didn't eat all day to compensate for the amount of calories I'd be consuming later. I had to get a combo dish, so I got 2 vegetarian enchiladas (with surprisingly just veggies and no cheese in it), which came with a side of rice, black beans, and this cornbread thing. I also got a caloric drink - mango lemonade. I just can't wrap my head around drinking a non diet soda.

We processed the meal before and after, which I didn't find particularly helpful. I think because both of us were really struggling with the meal before hand and after. The process f eating the actual meal wasn't as bad as I thought, but afterwards I felt awful, physically and emotionally.

It helped to get my mind off of it with our next activity, a gratitude journal. It helped me get my mind off the meal and focus on positivity. I'm still pretty bitter that I had to eat that, and I weighed myself when I got home and obviously weighed more than I did before I ate it. I'm just scared that my weight is going to be up tomorrow morning.

Okay, now I'm actually flipping out (*tw* calories)

I have Dine tomorrow night The 3 hour program that includes dinner. Last week the meal was super easy, like I wouldn't have eaten it at home, but it's nothing I would have flipped out about.

But I got a text from Alex (leader) this afternoon saying we're going to Chevy's. Chevy's. I looked up the calories (which I know I'm not supposed to) and all the entrees are like 1000+ calories, not kidding. And we have to drink a caloric drink on top of that.

I texted Alex, "Hi Alex, sorry to bother you. I know I shouldn't be doing this, but I'm looking at the calorie count of the entrees at Chevy's and they're really high. Are we going to have to eat an entire entrée?"

To which she replied, "Hi Sarah. I know it's really really tough not to look up menu items beforehand and I know you may be feeling anxious. Try to remember, it's just one dinner. We can talk about this tomorrow before the meal too."

She's going to make us eat the entire entrée. Like, I don't know how I'm going to do that. That's a freaking shit ton of calories, and more than I eat in one day. Plus a caloric drink on top. Like I'm totally flipping out. I don't know how I'm going to do it. I don't want to do it, it's freaking me out. How can I eat all that in one meal???

I know it's not helping my recovery, but I'm seriously considering supplementing it (for those of you not familiar with treatment terminology, that means drinking an extremely highly caloric shake in place of the meal) because that would be less calories. And I know if I do that they're going to question whether or not I should be in the program.

But I can't do eat that much. Like I'm going to have to skip breakfast and lunch for this. I'm literally just going to fill up on coffee and diet coke tomorrow, and even then that's more than I'm okay with eating. I know I'm supposed to be moving towards recovery, but this is too much. I'd honestly rather eat pizza (which is a fear food).

I feel so immature right now, but I don't wanna do this. I can't.

Not much happened today

I woke up and had an interview with a dietician (trying to find the right fit). Then went back to bed because I was literally so tired I wasn't coherent. Like, I don't know why I was tired, I went to bed at 1am which isn't late for me.

Anyways, I skipped all my classes, which is pretty much going to backfire on me. Then I went to volunteer at the hospital. There wasn't too much for me to do, so I sat at the nurses station most of the time and answered the phone and let people in. I also worked on typing up some devo responses for my blog. Speaking of which, there's a new page with devos in it, if you're interested in reading verses and my reflections.

I had a total of two interviews today, I was supposed to have three but the one we're making up tomorrow.

Anyways, that's as interesting as my day went. I guess that's what happens when you sleep through your day.

What a bad appointment

Oh gosh, I don't even know where to start. I had therapy today, and it really sucked. We had a lot to talk about, and my therapist was really firm with me. Basically we talked about the whole crisis that happened on Wednesday, and how I've not been doing well. She talked about how my judgement is impaired because I'm making bad decisions like not sleeping, overdosing on medications and caffeine, and not filling my prescriptions. I told her that I made a conscious decision last night to go to bed, even though I wanted to pull another. But then I told her I regretted not pulling the allnighters, and she used that as a way to defend her stance. She asked me if I was drinking my boosts (which I'm pretty sure was optional), and I told them I left them at my mom's house. 

Regardless of all that, she blatantly said she wants me inpatient. She said she's scared for my safety right now because my load isn't getting easier (even though I quit my babysitting job??), and I'm in a "fragile state." She asked me what I was eating the past couple of days and she wasn't impressed (I mean, I'm not too impressed with myself either). I tried reassuring her that I'm going to be fine. I mean, I'm in the process of interviewing dietitians, I just started Dine, and I'm looking into art therapy. She's still not convinced, but she can't make me do something I'm not going to do, unless she gets a court order, which I don't think she can do on me because I'm mentally stable, and not in medical danger.

We also talked about this dangerous situation that I'm sort of trapped in. I can't explain the details, because I respect the people involved. But it's really taking a tol on me.

Anyways, it was a hard session. And I feel guilty for going against what my therapist wants me to do, but I know I'm safe. And to be honest, I almost don't care that I'm not eating enough. Like I want to recover, kind of, but I don't want to take the actions to do it. I just want to make everyone else happy. 

Fall Retreat and Dietitian Stuff

Went on the fall retreat with Cru. It was fun, but I don't really think I "grew" from it. Everyone always talks about growing in their faith on retreats, and I guess I just feel like scripture doesn't make enough sense for me to really get anything out of it. Like I can pinpoint verses in the bible and pick out ones that relate to whatever I want, but I don't understand it in context.

I don't really feel like I connected with anyone. Like everyone was super nice, and I chatted with a few people, but when it comes down to it, I doubt anyone's going to be eager to add me on facebook.

We did have this lady's night thing where we talked about holiness in speech, singleness, dating, and consumption (I thought that was going to relate to me, but no, it was talking about over consumption of anything, whether it be food, or sex, etc.)

We then did an activity where we painted something that we took away from the night. I painted a picture with the scripture 1 Corinthians 3:17 "If anyone destroys God's temple, God will destroy that person; for God's temple is sacred, and you together are that temple." And I felt like that resonated with me, because what I do to my body is destroying God's temple. I mean, I can't just snap my fingers, read the verse, and things will be different, but it's food (no pun intended) for thought.


On another note, I've committed to switching dietitians. I emailed about 20 dietitians (if not more) in the area that say they specialize in EDs. I've gotten quite a few responses and I'm going to interview them with the following Qs
Session length and frequency
Provide billing receipts for insurance
Treatment approach (e.g. Do you use a special approach to treating EDs)
What resources and additional activities do you offer to help support recovery?
Do you personalize your approach per individual and her needs or according to what's not working or what's going well?
Experience with EDs
Do you do meal plans, and if so how do you do them
Will you allow me to keep my current meal plan
Will you collaborate with my treatment team
I weigh X and am 5'0.5 with a bmi of X, can I maintain that weight
How do you work on challenging Ed behaviors (eg restricting carbs, fear foods, counting calories, rituals, intuitive eating, etc)
At what point would you terminate me for being too much or require a hloc
Exercise - how you might coordinate with my trainer or accommodate a healthy exercise program into her nutritional support?
Will you support a vegetarian diet, what about vegan?
Not a determining factor, but are you able to incorporate faith/religion into your practice?
How do you run your sessions (e.g. What should I expect in the initial and follow up sessions?)
Osteopenia (diagnosed over two years ago) - do you recommend ways of preventing further deterioration of bones?

Do you believe full recovery is possible, or that you're always recovering?

I've scheduled quite a few interviews this week. I had one today, but it turned into her learning a little about me, and then scheduling an hour long consultation. It's scheduled for Wednesday. I don't know if I'm going to like her or not, but I'm going to ask her all the questions above and compare her to other dieticians and see if she's a good fit for me. I just want someone who's experienced with EDs, and knows all the tricks I play (because when it comes down to it, I'm very manipulative and am good at running the sessions my way, which obvious isn't helpful).

I'm excited to meet her and see what she can offer me.


I'm so torn and conflicted on what to do with my blog. I've gotten a lot of feedback from people on tumblr saying that my blog is really attention seeking, and that I'm seeking out validation.

I can honestly say that is not my intention. I want this blog to be honest, I want it to depict the real struggle of having and eating disorder, and how it's not a simply cure. I want to raise awareness, and to minimize the stigma. I want a voice, to be heard. When I'm struggling I feel alone, and writing in this helps me to not feel so alone, even if people don't read this.

But I feel really discouraged. On one hand, people are telling me I'm so attention seeking. I hate when people are attention seeking, and that's not what I want. But then I get feedback from people about my honesty, and how they appreciate it.

I really don't know how to blog anyways. Right now, I'm struggling, and unfortunately my world revolves around my eating disorder. That's pathetic, but it's the truth. I have nothing else to write about. How did my day go? Oh, it was awful because I panicked over what I was going to eat for x, y, and z. Or so-and-so triggered me to do x.

I do things. I'm on a retreat right now. I could blog about that. But the majority of my time has been spent in my eating disorder. I don't know if I should continue this blog, or just make it private and allow people e-mail access, or what I should do.

Again, blogging is good for me. It helps me be more honest with myself about my struggle, and to other people instead of pretending I'm doing great (because if you ask me in person how I'm doing, I'm likely to tell you that everything is going well.

I really just don't know what to do. My advice for you is to stop reading my blog if it bothers you. I feel like whatever I do is going to be wrong. I can omit my ED completely and pretend like things are great, or I can be "attention-seeking" but honest about what's going on. I can't please everyone.

Dietician (*tw* calories)

I feel like I need to invest in a new dietician. My current one is the campus dietician who specializes in sports nutrition. I find her so unhelpful it's almost triggering, because it's like it give me permission to restrict.

I saw her today and I guess my therapist and/or psychiatrist filled her in on what was happening. She wanted to make sure I was staying hydrated. She knew I had been struggling with food, so she asked what I had back at home to eat.

I told her what I had. And she told me, "that sounds like a pretty good day if you eat it all."

So let me get this...
Breakfast: 2 vegan sausages 180 cal
Lunch: carrots (40) hummus (110), vegan chik'n (120) 260 cal
Snack: (which I have no intention on eating) larabar 190 cal
Dinner: vegan fish fillets (270) broccoli (40) 310 cal
Total: 960 cal (if I actually eat the larabar)

That's a good day? Because a few months ago she told me I should be eating at minimum 2000 cal, and more if I'm working out (which I usually do). So I'm eating less than half of what she had previously recommended for days I don't workout, on a day I'm probably burning at least 500 calories exercising.

And then I brought up the fact that I have trouble with lunch - I forget to pack lunch and freak out at the cafeteria options. I also told her I've been restricting carbohydrates. She told me I could have a yogurt and fruit (that's about 200 cal) or a a sandwich and take the bread off (because that's totally healthy) for lunch.

Also, she doesn't weigh me. I see her every other week, she knows I'm restricting, and she doesn't weigh me. That actually triggers me beyond belief, for irrational reasons so I won't get into it.

She gave me a bag of boosts to drink if I want. If I want. Boosts are about 250 cal.

So if I want I can eat 1210 calories (which is still less than I should be eating). I don't.


I had a rough night last night. I don't know how detailed I'm going to get, but just know there's some triggering content, and it's pretty personal. I'm pretty open about things, as you've probably realized. But if you have questions about things I don't share on here, I'd rather you ask me personally and non-anonymously so I can reply (feel free to comment anonymously though).

I've been struggling with lingering suicidal thoughts for a while. Usually nothing too intense, pretty passive, I'm sure most people experience that at some point in their lives. Sometimes it would get a little intense, but never where I felt unsafe or like I was in danger of harming myself.

The past two weeks have been rough. I've been pulling all nighters, od'ing on caffeine, not eating very well, and doing other harmful things to myself. I pulled another allnighter Tuesday night, and between Tuesday and Wednesday consumed a lot of caffeine and too much focalin.  I've also been out of some of my meds because I lost my prescriptions, and I was too afraid to go to my psychiatrist about it because I didn't want her to think I was irresponsible. Anyways, all of that together just triggered me over the top.

I came home from Dine (which wasn't bad at all) and we had a house meeting. I sat in it for a couple of minutes, but then my roommate noticed that I was really tired and my roommates were all cool with me leaving to go to sleep. At that point, I was physically and emotionally exhausted, and was already feeling pretty bad.

I'm not sure what happened, but when I got to my room I just started bawling. My emotions hit me like a truck, and I couldn't handle myself. I felt intensely suicidal, more than I've ever experienced. I talk about dying sometimes, but never with any intent. I felt like I was out of control of my actions, and I was really scared that I was going to do something harmful to myself, particularly kill myself. That was really scary for me because while suicide has been on my mind, I never felt it with that kind of intent.

I messaged my mom and told her right away that I felt unsafe. At first I wasn't going to talk to her on the phone because it was in the sunroom where everyone was, and I didn't want to go out there crying like I was. My mom was insisting that I call 911 or that she come and get me. I realized that I needed to talk to my mom, and had someone from my house bring me my phone. My mom talked to me the entire way to my house and came and helped me pack, and brought me home.

I talked to my dad on the phone on the way home, and then again when I got home and told him everything that was going on. He made me feel better because I felt so afraid of disappointing him for feeling like I was, and he told me I should never feel like I'm disappointing him for my feelings. We talked about how busy I've been, and how that's been too much to deal with. And we agreed that I need to quit my babysitting job (which I'm still not sure how I'm going to word that to her, because right now they're depending on me).

Anyways, I e-mailed my therapist and told her what happened. She replied, and in her message reassured me that I wasn't weak for feeling the way I felt, but was actually strong for recognizing I was in danger and reaching out to my mom (which is something a year ago I wouldn't have done). My mom also reassured me of this.

After talking to my dad, I was going to drink water and take some advil. But then I just started puking, probably because I drank too much water too quickly at home (I was super dehydrated by that point from not drinking water, and only drinking caffeine). My mom then helped me to bed and made sure I was safe before she left me.

I feel better this morning. The thoughts are still lingering, but they're very passive. I scheduled an emergency appointment with my psychiatrist, and we met and talked for almost an hour. She explained to me that sleep deprivation and consuming as much caffeine as I had been was messing with my dopamine levels, and could send any person into depression or suicidal episode. She said given that I was already vulnerable, she wasn't surprised that I had the night I had. She refilled my prescriptions, and also put me back on trazadone (which I used to be on) for 10 days to regulate my sleep schedule again. We're going to check-in again in two weeks, just to see how I'm doing.

Anyways, I feel much better today. I feel kind of guilty for missing classes, but I've been reassured that I made the right decision.

If you pray, I could use some prayer. Pray that I get my emotions regulated, and that I'm able to deal with the lingering suicidal thoughts. Pray that I'm able to better manage my schedule so I don't have to pull allnighters like I had been. And pray that I make smart decisions about what I prioritize (e.g. volunteering/babysitting/graduating in Dec./etc). Also pray that this is a wake up call to me to take better care of both my physical and mental health.

If you made it this far, thank you for reading. Hopefully my next post will be a little more positive. I know my posts have been really negative lately, and I need to start reflecting on the positive things in life.

Why so scary?

I'm so scared of recovery. I'm resisting it. I crave my illness. It keeps me safe. It's so miserable,bbut comforting at the same time. I'm afraid to let go. I crave sickness. I crave death. I want to be happy, but this is what I know. I'm terrified of doing the right thing, and I don't even know what the right thing is. I don't want to go back to treatment, but recovery seems so far fetched. Like I'm not doing terrible. I'm straddling the line. One foot in, one foot out. Even if I truly wanted to recover, like 100%, I don't think I could. I'm so conflicted because I want a life, but I'm scared of not having one. I feel so inadequate. I'm such a worthless person. And I know I'm not supposed to say that, but that's how I feel. I don't value myself, I wish I could, but I can't. I don't care about being beautiful, and my fear of gaining weight isn't because I don't want to be fat, but because that's letting my illness slip away. Part of me regrets going back to therapy, going to treatment, admitting to this dumb program that I'm going to tonight. im supposed to want to be in the program to go be in it, but I don't know if I do. I'm doing it because I need support, but why do I need support if I don't want to move forward. I feel so guilty for being a bad person, and not wanting recovery. I've done so much work, and I've proved to myself that I can do things that I never thought I could do. But I'm scared of where I am. I'm "healthy," but I'm not. I'm just not sick. My mind is sick, but I'm not. It's so fucked up, I feel so alone. I'm having a hard time dealing with my emotions, and being sick gives me an excuse to have a fucked up mind. I'm sorry I'm cussing, I'm supposed to be a Christian, but I suck at that. I'm scared to go to program tonight. That's a step forward, a step into forbidden territory. I've done treatment before, and I've wanted it before, but I don't right now. I just want to do all the things that kill my body - I'm tormenting myself, and I'm doing it on purpose. Not sleeping, not eating enough, smoking too much, drinking, OD'ing on shit that fucks with my heart and liver, using too much caffeine, over exercising when I have time. Why do I do this to myself? I hate that I hate myself so much that I can't respect my body. I'm a hypocrite. I preach recovery and inspiration, but I'm not living it. I don't want to live it. I just want to stay out of a higher level of care.


I'm in a really tricky situation, and I feel really guilty about it. I let it go on too long, and have done a poor job of being direct and asserting my needs. I can't go into details because of confidentiality. But basically I'm in a situation where I have to confront someone about a situation. I've been talking with my therapist about it for a while now, but haven't really dealt with the situation, except maybe touched on it once.

At this point, my therapist has a lot of fuel. She's really protective of me, and anytime anyone does something that could potentially harm me she gets very defensive. She is really pushing me to handle the situation, which I'm doing now, but I'm not comfortable with the way she wants it handled. Mostly because I don't think it's fair, and I don't think it's as big of a deal as my therapist is making it out to be. Yeah, I'm negatively impacted, but I'm responsible for how I react.

I feel so guilty about this whole situation. I want to handle it right, and I don't know if I'm doing the right thing. I'm not very direct, and I'm a people pleaser, and I don't handle confrontation well. I usually avoid it. But now I have to deal with it, and I have my therapist "fighting for my life."

I feel like a huge burden. I feel like I'm asking too much, and that I'm hard to live with because I have these excessive needs. I just feel like such an awful person right now. I always put others ahead of myself, but at the same time I'm extremely selfish for requesting people to cater to my needs. No one else asks as much as I do. I just feel guilty, selfish, awful, and like I'm a terrible person to live with. I want to think that I'm being too hard on myself, but people are too nice to me and for what reason? I'm needy, I hate being that way, and I try not to be.

Anyways, if you pray, pray that I handle this well, and that I say the right things, and that no one gets hurt emotionally.

Anyways, here is my day in a nutshell

x3. Yes, I'm an addict.
Feelings towards school


Volunteering at the hospital

Still at the hospital - wiped these each individually

Goal in life:

Pumpkin Blizzard! Must do by the end of October. Challenge? Accepted.


Dove's Newest Campaign

Dove’s latest ad shows that grass is always greener when it comes to body image

How about we don't change how girls see themselves, but how they value themselves? I'm sick of hearing all these "everyone is beautiful" campaigns, because yeah, I do genuinely believe there's beauty in everyone. But why does that matter? Why do we place so much value on how the world, or we ourselves, see ourselves. Do we really want girls to think how they see themselves is what matters? Because it's not. You're valuable for reasons outside of how you look. What we really need to do is teach girls to find value in themselves, because that's what the real issue, I believe, is.

One day

One day I'll eat pizza from the cafeteria I volunteer at.

Crazy Busy Day (and a lot of disgusting thoughts)

Today has been super busy. I attempted to wake up at 6 to finish my annotated bibliography so I would have time to workout, but I slept through my alarm and my mom calling me (yes, I have my mom call me when I need to wake up super early), and didn't get up until 7. I still finished the bibliography, and had time for breakfast and a shower, but not enough time to go to the gym.

I forgot to mention the other day, my professor approved my request for an extension on my paper and other project, so I'm super relieved about that. I have until Wednesday at 11 to finish it, but I don't know where I'm going to find the time to do that these next few days. I'm so busy, I hate it.

I had two back to back classes, got out at 11:50 and quickly bike home so that I could leave my house by noon. I had an orientation at Children's National Hospital that went a little over two hours, and I had to rush from there to Holy Cross Hospital where I volunteer, and ended up being 30min late (but my supervisor seemed understanding since I sent her an e-mail while I was at Children's National letting her know I was running behind).

Now I'm at Holy Cross "volunteering," but all of my duties have already been done by the volunteer who comes in during the morning. I feel like I'm just wasting time here sometimes, because now that I'm working in the afternoons, the morning person gets everything done. And it's slow enough on the unit that everything really only needs to get done once. My supervisor is cool and always tries to find me something to do, but she leaves at 3:30 (I get here at 3pm usually) and when she does find me something to do it doesn't take that long. Sometimes there are kids on the unit that I can play with and entertain, but lately it's been really slow.

Here I am just chilling in the playroom, while I wait for something exciting to happen (haha, that doesn't actually happen on this unit). I enjoy volunteering when there's things to do, but when I'm just sitting around, I feel like I'm just in everybody's way. Thank God for internet here.
After this I have to rush to a bible study that I've been going to. I've only been twice, but it's good so far, and the group seems pretty cohesive. I'm not quite comfortable with the people there yet, only because it takes me a while to get used to people, but they all seem friendly and welcoming. The one thing I hate though is when it's time to pray. We go around and pray together, and I get so embarrassed praying out loud, so I just squeeze the person's hand next to me so they know to go. But I feel bad not praying out loud when everyone else is. Usually it's just a small group of ladies that meet, but tonight it's a larger group that includes the guys too. I'm kind of nervous about meeting new people.
Straight after that I have to go to Silver Spring for my overnight babysitting job. I probably won't get there until at least 10, so the kids will be in bed and I might be able to get some homework done. But I have to get up at 6 in order to get myself ready, and then both the girls ready and fed, and get the one girl to school on time.
I somehow have to get home and pack in between all of this, and find time to eat dinner. I didn't really have lunch, I mean I ate a bar, but that technically doesn't have enough calories in it, and my breakfast wasn't that hearty either. I struggled a lot with eating the bar for lunch, because I got through the orientation without eating lunch (which ended around 2:45pm) and drove straight to Holy Cross after. I felt invincible, like I didn't need lunch since I already passed lunch time and wasn't really hungry. I knew a bar wouldn't hurt me, but I also drunk a lot of calories in alcohol last night, which really freaked me out today (even though the scale is fine). I ate it, because the most embarrassing thing ever would be passing out while at the hospital, but I'm still kind of like why did I do that?
I'm still really nervous about starting Dine on Wednesday. I know I'm going to have to eat a real meal, and a caloric drink, and I don't really know what this "real meal" is going to consist of. At home, at least I know the amount of calories I'm going to consume, and I preplan my meals around my other meals. Alex (the leader) said she was going to let us know on Monday what we were going to be having for dinner on Wednesday, but I still haven't heard from her, and I'm getting nervous. I'm also really nervous because I have my dietician appointment on Thursday - the day after eating a normal meal. Normally I restrict before my appointments because I'm afraid I'm going to be weighed and my weights going to be way up there. Which doesn't make sense, because I weigh myself like 50x a day (I'm not kidding) and it's not like I'm on the high end of my range or anything.
Sorry I just talked about that for a while, I'm just really anxious about that. I'm also really anxious about eating the next two days leading up to Dine, because I feel like I have to compensate for whatever we're going to eat that night.
Ahhh, sorry. I need to stop talking about how anxious I am about this. I shouldn't be so worried. I've done treatment before, and I can always back out if it's too much (which I know would be a bad decision but I'm kind of conflicted about this whole thing anyways.
This is sick, and I've only admitted it on tumblr (where I talk about all the crazy things that go through my head, unfiltered), but I don't know that full recovery is possible for me. I read a research article about relapse in individuals with Anorexia Nervosa, and the relapse rate is so much higher in those with Binge-Purge Subtype (that's me), and are less likely to recover. That was pretty discouraging to read, but it makes a lot of sense that maybe I won't recover.
Okay, I didn't get to the sick and crazy messed up part yet. But part of me just wants to die. Not like in a suicide way. But I want to be dead. I want my eating disorder to kill me. I want to die from my eating disorder. I want it to kill me. I know I'm repeating myself, but it's a strong belief that I've had for a few years now. If I don't recover from it, if I can't truly be happy, this is how I want to die. That's depressing to hear, I'm sure. And like, don't freak out, it's mostly coming from feeling hopeless in terms of recovery, it's an easy way out of life. And the sick thing is, it means I won. Well, my eating disorder won. It means I did my eating disorder best. How disgusting is it that I have thoughts like that? That's not even rational, I can't even explain it to myself. It doesn't make sense in my head. I want to die, and I want my eating disorder to kill me.
But I have all these plans for my life, that requires living. Which is why I'm doing this Dine program, which is why I'm fighting reluctantly. I'm very reluctant. I don't have a lot of hope. I try to convince myself that I have hope by reading inspirational stories. But I'm different. I'm not going to recover. I have the kind of eating disorder that research shows people don't recover from (I mean some people do, but the odds are against me considering my subtype and how long I've struggled).
This post got super depressing and I'm sorry if you read through all of this. I hope this wasn't triggering to read or discouraging.

Family Time

Earlier this week, my mom sent me an e-mail with a pumpkin soup recipe, asking if I'd like to come over and help her make it. The answer was obviously yes, seeing as pumpkin was in the title of the recipe. We decided to meet up today, because yesterday was my sister Shannon's 15th birthday and my family was going to celebrate it tonight, so it seemed like a good time to meet up.
I met my mom at Wegman's so we could do grocery shopping for the week. My house that I live in does communal groceries, but lately it's just been better for me to do my own food stuff. It causes me a lot of anxiety not knowing what I'm going to have for a meal, or planning the day in advance what I'm going to have and then not having something available. Ideally, eating what the house eats would be moving in the right direction in terms of recovery, it's just been too much for me to handle recently. Plus, if I'm going to eat food, it's gotta be the best tasting food, because why waste calories on cardboard? (My roommates don't eat cardboard, but you know what I mean)
So we went shopping, and it was a pretty low stress trip, mostly because I didn't have a lot that I needed. And I've kind of gotten into a routine of what I need, which is helpful for right now. And then we came home and made soup.... well, I helped a little, but mostly I just hung around and goofed off. But hey, I only see my family a few times a month, so I like to be able to hang out with my siblings and chat and mess around with them.
I had a really good time hanging out with the family. As I posted on facebook, it's always so refreshing to spend time with my family. They are so amazing and supportive, and I couldn't ask for a better family. It's amazing how much things have changed. I spent so many years being resentful of my family, and I don't even know why, they never did anything wrong. Of course, there are things that I look back on and wish they did differently. But they're humans and imperfect, and they did the best they could with me and my siblings, and I can't thank them enough for doing their best.
Going home used to cause me so much anxiety. Especially when I lived in Texas. I always freaked out about the whole food aspect of things (where am I going to get my food? how am I going to prepare it when there are PEOPLE there? I can't be seen around food. I'm going to have to talk to people?) I also struggled with the fact that I was really deep in my ED at the time, and my parents weren't actively trying to "save me." We've talked about it in therapy, and I understand now that at points they didn't know how to help, or if it would worsen things. And there were times when I was so good at hiding it, that they didn't realize how bad it was.
A big reason that things have been different is because of the work I've done both in and out of treatment. My family therapist at ERC in Denver was amazing at getting me to be more open with my parents, and not allowing me to bullshit with them. But even since then, things have gotten so much better with my family. I think I've been more open with them about my struggles, and how they can help. And I've reached out to my parents more when things have felt out of my control. I definitely can't give myself all the credit though, I don't know if "changed" is the right word, but my parents have learned so much over the past two years about how they can help me, and have been way more active in my recovery. I don't know if that's because I've let them in more, or if they've stepped up more, or both.
Dinner with my family was great. I don't usually enjoy food unless I'm not sober, but as much as eating with people causes me anxiety, it DOES make it more enjoyable once I get passed the anxiety. I think the anxiety is more thinking about having to eat with people and thinking about the anxiety, so I get anxious over becoming anxious. But once I sit down and do it, it's okay. Eating with people is so helpful because I can think about the conversation rather than the calories that I'm shoving down my throat. I feel like I'm getting much better at contributing to the conversation when I'm eating with my family than I was even a few months ago. We even talked about athletes, and 300-lb football players, and beefing up, and it didn't make me cringe or turn me off food. I mean, we WERE talking about a vegan 300-lb football player, but still.
When I drove my sister to wawa earlier, I found this pumpkin cannoli dip & chips, and anyone who knows anything about me knows I'm obsessed with pumpkin. And I like the regular non pumpkin variety of it, so I thought I'd give this a try. It was good, like the normal kind, but definitely didn't taste like pumpkin.


Anyways, I'm so glad things have been better with my family. I'm growing to love and appreciate them more and more everyday. I used to think my siblings hated me (because I was pretty rotten when I was in my ED), but it always tickles my heart when my little brothers come up to me and give me an "I missed you" hug.

Veg Fest 2015

First and foremost, thank you everyone who read my blog and has sent me some form of encouragement. I really do appreciate it. While I may not be 100% confident in myself, I wouldn't be going back into a program if I knew I could do this. I know I can't possibly be the only ones with these apprehensions, and it will be good having people in a similar place as me to relate. And maybe people further in their recoveries than me that can give me some hope, and people not as far in their recoveries that I can be a light to.
Now time to post about the DC VEGFEST! I meant to post about it yesterday, but I posted about other things, and then never got around to this. But yeah, I went to the D.C. Veg Fest with my friend Chelsea, and it was a lot of fun. I went last year, and it was totally different (a reminder of how far I've come). Part of it was going with a friend, who pushed me a little bit, and also knowing that I had support if I needed it. Last year I went, and I in a pretty good place, but also in that "just got out of treatment, got to follow my meal plan to a T," and still very socially timid (but I would still talk to people). I don't think I tried any of the samples last year, and ended up just getting lunch to fit my exchanges. This year was more fun, I wasn't as rigid. And while my friend thinks I should have tried more samples, I did what I was comfortable with, and I didn't count the calories in all the samples (huge woah). I even at this ginormous vegan pumpkin sandwich, and didn't care that I could only guestimate the calories in it. I talked to a lot of people, and I really think I gave off that happy cheerful vibe.
That's the kind of person I want to be. I want to be happy and cheerful, and I want it to rub off on other people. Because I genuinely want to see my happiness shine in other people. That's so selfish, I want to be the reason you're happy? Dude. But I want people to be happy, whether I make them happy or not. I just selfishly like knowing that I was a contributor to it. I don't know if that's a bad thing.
Anyways, here are some photos and a video about all the cool samples I got at the veg fest (yeah I gave away my youtube channel, ooops).

Dine Monte Nido

I've been thinking about how I wanted to post this, or if I wanted to post it, but I feel like if you're following my life, this is kind of an important detail that may be relevant for future posts. Basically I'm starting Monte Nido's Dine program on Wednesday, October 7. I feel kind of weird posting it because I've been in and out of IOP/PHP/Res/IP/etc. for a while, and it's like, again?

Only this is different. Monte Nido is a treatment program that I believe started in California by Carolyn Costin (author of 8 keys to recovery from an eating disorder), and Dine is an affiliate of her program. It's only a one day program, and it's 3 hours long and includes dinner. The program is meant for people who want to recover and want to be there, as opposed to other programs I've been in where a lot of people are there because they're forced to be there.

I have a lot of apprehensions about starting the program. One of them is the leader, Alex Raymond, a new nutritionist that works for Rebecca Bitzer. Background info - Rebecca Bitzer is my old dietician, who also used to lead a group that Alex would sometimes run with her. Alex was also a student at UMD my first semester (when I was pretty bad in my ED). I was a nutrition major at the time (lol), and I think it was Alex's last semester there as a nutrition major. I went to their nutrition club one time, realized that I felt so awkward there because talking about food used to freak me out (why was I a nutrition major??), and didn't go back. Alex was also the leader of the nutrition club. I don't know if she remembers me, but it's just weird going to a program lead by a prior peer. And it's also going to be weird going to a program lead by a nutritionist rather than a therapist, because I feel like a lot of the group topics will be therapy issues?

Another apprehension is that the meals don't go by exchanges, they go by what is a "normal meal." I can't even remember eating a meal without either counting the calorie content, or counting exchanges (while still counting calories, because I can't eat something without calculating the calories in my head). So like, how am I supposed to know if I'm eating what fits into my meal plan (not like I follow my meal plan anyways, but I most certainly don't want to go over)?

And going along with the whole meal situation, it is required that everyone have a caloric drink with their meal. I know I shouldn't be as scared of caloric beverages as I am, but ahhhh. Like I can drink caloric beverages in certain situations. For instance, sometimes I drink soy milk with breakfast, but that's only if it fits into my allowed calories. Or I'll drink alcoholic beverages occasionally, but again, only if I underrate that day, because again, calories. I mean, why drink my calories if I can get just as many calories from food? I know it's possible for me to do the whole liquid calorie thing, because in past treatments I've done them. But it's always somehow fit into my meal plan (e.g. if I need a dairy, I'll have soy milk, if I need a fruit, I'll have coconut juice, etc.). I talked with the intake director about it, who said it was a common concern for people (which I knew), and that most people get used to it after a few weeks. But I still can't even wrap my mind around drinking COW'S milk, or non-diet soda. I hope we can at least choose something that's not so "scary."

I'm also nervous because the intake director said the program is for people who want to be there. I want to be there, but I want not to be there. I'm so conflicted in terms of recovery. I feel really stuck. Like I might have a good week, but then I have a bad week. I'm making no progress, and am constantly going back and forth. I don't know what I want. I'm exhausted. But I don't want to live with an eating disorder, because it's not living. I just feel really hopeless in terms of recovery and motivation. But the intake director thinks this might be a good fit for me, because I'll be surrounded by people who want to recover, and I can gain strength and motivation from them. I hope he's right.

I want to give the program a shot, but I've been kicked out of programs before due to non-compliance, and I've faked my way through programs before, and there have been times where I felt like I was really taking it in but still relapsed. I need this time to be different. I don't have time in my life to waste on an eating disorder. I feel like I need more support than I have now, but I don't have time for IOP/DAY/PHP/etc., so this needs to work. I have my future all planned out. Graduate in December, work in the spring and summer while accumulating volunteer hours, practicum over the summer, start grad school in the Fall. I don't have time in my life to backtrack and end up in a higher level of care.

Sorry this was a long post. I think I could use some encouragement, because I feel discouraged and unmotivated, and really ashamed of doing a program again when I've done them so many times. I'm scared this isn't going to work, or that I'm not going to be able to persevere.

Also, if you do the whole prayer thing, pray that I would really dive into this program and give it everything. And that I can be honest with my team about things, because I've been struggling with that too. And pray that I'll be motivated and encouraged by the other ladies in treatment.

I like this image, because people are always like "try this guilt-free food" or "I'm so going to feel guilty after eating this," and other phrases like that. But I mean, it's food, you're not committing a mortal sin. In fact, your body NEEDS food to function. And eating a slice of cake once in a while won't kill you (in fact, I had to eat dessert every night for a few months, and I'm still kind of alive). So why should food make us feel guilty, if we're eating it in moderation? I mean, this is still something I struggle with, and I'm sure many people without eating disorders struggle with it too. But wouldn't it be wonderful if ALL foods were guilt free in our minds?

An anon on tumblr asked me:
"You're not trying to lose weight, but you're restricting?"

If you can earnestly ask this same question, you have a lot to learn about eating disorders. I'm too tired to give a long answer to this, just because this question has so much overwhelming content that I could reply with, but hopefully my blog gives some insight into the fact that eating disorders usually don't stem from wanting to lose weight (although they can definitely be part of the many triggers that trigger them).

I didn't do anything of note today. I'm still waiting to hear back from my therapist about that assignment. So I'm pretty anxious about that. I also started a new vLog. I used to have one that I made the first time I got out of treatment, but I hid most of the videos on there because I was kind of triggering to be honest (like talking about weight and stuff). It still exists, but I can no longer log on because I don't have the password or original email that I used to set it up.

That's okay though. I challenge you guys to find my new one (you probably won't - unless you know my old one, in which *hint hint*). I'm probably not going to talk about anything of note on there, since I'm using this. I'll probably just use it for fun.
I have a lot of recovery books that I've skimmed through and never really used. But I might see if some of them have some good journal prompts. I have a faith based one that I started using over the summer, but then got busy and stopped. I might start posting some of those again (I used to post them on my tumblr).

The end of a crazy week


It's the end of a crazy week. I successfully completed 3 all-nighters in a row. I did get about 1.5 hours of sleep last night, which is good. I'm also super energized right now, I feel like exhaustion is like fuel for me.... it pumps me up and makes me talk a mile a minute.

I got my results back from my Tuesday exam. I did really well in it, so I guess the all-nighters paid off. Hopefully in the future though I won't have to pull so many all-nighters in a row.

I still have an exam in a few hours that I'm not prepared for. I might skip my next class (which is really straightforward) so I have more time to study. I'll see how far I am in studying and decide then.

I was supposed to babysit tonight, which I was really stressed out over because no sleep+kids is not a good combination. But thankfully the whether cancelled their event, so I have the night off and can get some sleep.

I forgot to pack lunch again, which has been a reoccurring theme. And I know eating something before my exam is probably a good idea, there's just nothing on campus that I want to eat, or that feels doable. Plus I'm convinced that when I get home at 4pm is a good time for lunch. Normal people eat lunch at random times, right? I guess I need to start packing my lunch the night before so that I actually take lunch to school with me.

I'm bummed about the storm. I was supposed to go to the Veg Fest in D.C. on Saturday with some friends, but it looks like it's going to be rained out. I was really looking forward to it. I also have no plans for the weekend now, and I'm trying to be more social, so now I have to find something to do.

I feel like I could post multiple times a day. I just have so many thoughts, and I want to express myself to people, by I don't talk. I mean, I talk, but not a lot. It's easier for me to express myself through text. I can think about what I have to say, and for some reason I use better vocabulary when I write?

I'm burnt out. I'm done studying. I can't study anymore. My brain is fried. This exam is only worth 10%, and I'm just tired of stressing over it. I need a break. I've been going through my notes, and nothing is sticking. I just have to trust God that whatever happens in this exam will work out for the best, which is really hard when I feel this unprepared.

My anxiety is really high the last few days. I guess it's not surprising given the amount of caffeine and focallin I've been consuming. But I also have a lot on my mind. I'm anxious about school. I'm anxious about all the money I've been spending. I'm anxious about applying for jobs. I'm anxious to hear back from my therapist to hear that I got the extension, even though she's confident I will. I'm anxious about this "toxic" situation I'm in - my therapists right, but I don't know how to get out of it. I'm too nice, and avoid conflict, and put other people ahead of myself. I feel like I need to cry, even though I don't have a real reason too. I'm just overwhelmed, and my anxiety is higher than usual, and I'm so conflicted about so many things and I don't know what to do.

Days like these I wish I had therapy every day, or at least still had a support group.

Oh my gosh, Keebler fudge stripes pumpkin spice are too good to be true. I could eat this whole package. But I won't.

Next day...
This post was supposed to be published yesterday. But I fell asleep before I could finish it. I don't even remember much about last night. I took my exam, it wasn't too hard but I don't think I did that well. But we'll see. I came home, ate lunch (and pumpkin spice Keebler fudge stripes, apparently). And passed out. I think I woke up when my roommate came home, but I wasn't like LIVE, I was way too tired to know what was going on (and maybe a little intoxicated?)

I woke up this morning, made breakfast, and then fell asleep while I was eating it (to give you an idea of how tired I am).

Now I'm about to adult, and get some stuff done.

Finish this assignment before noon
Pack lunch night before school
Find something social to do this weekend

Let's be normal for a minute

When I first started posting again, a couple days ago, I said this wasn't going to be all about my ED. Yet the trend has been otherwise. I think part of the problem is that, yes, I'm working on recovery, and I'm doing pretty well compared to where I've been, my ED still is a huge part of my life and dictates a lot of my decisions.

But part of wanting to blog is to explore other parts of myself. I want to be real with people, which means, yeah, my ED is going to be a part of my blog. But I don't want that to be all I blog about. But the problem is, I don't know how to blog without talking about it.

So I need your help. What are some things you want me to talk about unrelated to my ED? Or what are some suggestions you have for being more normal in my posts? 

I'm pretty sure anonymous comments are enabled, so you don't have to login to comment, or even expose your identity.

Also, I want to add some pages to my blog. What are some pages you'd like to see?

Edit: P.S. You can now subscribe by email.