Tuesday, July 27, 2010


when put very simply, an eating disorder is really nothing more than a set of rules.

...no carbs, no dressed salads, no sleeping late or naps, arms must be * inches around or less, coffee is better than food, no eating as much as anyone else at the table, a day never really counts unless you've worked out...

i've tried to think back to "the dark ages"- before i was i sick- and remember if i lived according to any rules back then.

all i could come up with was that i had to let the phone ring a certain number of times before i answered when boys called, and that i had to make a batch of chocolate chip cookies every thursday night to put in my assigned football player's locker as a "spirit spreader" on fridays. (yes. five years ago, i was a cheerleader. i'm recovering from more than just an eating disorder).

i was thinking about my rules and rituals and that my deeply-engrained inclinement to follow them has lingered into my recovery and how i might start to avoid the rules instead of pretending they're okay as long as i eat.

I can never go back to the aforementioned golden years of freedom (nor would i want to). i've got new, exciting, cheerleading-free years ahead of me.

but what i CAN do is to accept the rule-setting/following individual i've become and set some rules that will help my recovery rather than hinder it. in essence, i suppose i'm tricking myself into freedom using rules.

when i was a little girl, my mom and i would play candy land on nearly an hourly basis. as the game went on, i would make up new rules to ensure that i would win, regardless of what cards i drew. either my mom knew what she was doing or just got tired of telling me i was cheating, because if life were a game of candy land, and the licorice forest with it's creepy keeper, Lord Licorice, were a gym, then right now i would be making up some kind of rule about how it actually doesn't count if you draw the Lord Licorice card so i could out of the forest and keep moving forward towards Queen Frostine (which is the last spot on the board- the winning spot.)

i didn't start to work out until i was given medical clearance, and i never do more than what i've been allowed, but it's been amazing how quickly and easily my workouts have begun to borderline on being obsessive. i find myself constantly thinking about workout-related things- looking over my class schedule for fall and planning the times i'll be able to go to the gym- feeling like i can't do anything of importance unless i've worked out first...

i had the idea to make a rule for myself and my workouts a couple of weeks ago but let it simmer in my head for awhile because i just really didn't want to do it. but yesterday morning i realized that if i ever wanted to get rid of my workout obsession, i was going to have to set some guidelines, and that i may as well do it sooner than later.

so from now on, i am not allowed to work out unless i've spent some time being still and knowing that God is God is first.

some people might say that i'm shortchanging my faith- treating it as another thing that i do because i have to do it- because i know i should do it. i can understand where anyone who would say such things is coming from, but the way that i see what i'm doing is this: I love God, and i want to know God, but unfortunately i already know myself, and myself is an imperfect self that will not sit down by preference or nature.

so from now on, i will be sitting down and being still and knowing on a far more regular basis than before and i'm excited to see what comes of it.

and this doesn't just go for praying or reading people. i'm saying this to everyone because we all have something we want to care deeply about, but forget to treat it that way.

i wish that i was good enough to just be balanced- without any guidelines or restrictions. but then the world would be perfect and probably kind of boring.

so i'll keep making rules- good ones- the kind that get me Queen Frostine. the kind that get me to freedom.

1 comment:

  1. You should really incredibly proud of yourself for that. For taking responsibility and for doing that yourself, not something that is forced on or restricted on you.
    Your fight inspires me xxx