The title is a line I texted in jest to my daughter several months back – milking the dramatic fact that my husband and I did actually lose our home in a recent wildfire. Back story first…
A few years ago, a friend I hadn’t seen for a while emailed me to say: “When I saw you the other day, you had lost so much weight that I’m worried you aren’t eating enough.” People had been telling me for a while that I was too skinny, but I had mostly brushed it off. I thought they didn’t really understand my situation, or I didn’t appreciate the judging way they made comments.
But I could tell this friend really cared, and I was able to hear her concern. This prompted me to research the issue, and I resonated with much that I read about anorexia. I began seeking support and working towards recovery. I found it to be a slow process; tricky and easy to slip up.
Along the way, with support, I was able to heal some deep pain and sadness, gain much self-awareness, and learn coping skills and new strategies. I slowly put on a little weight, and declared myself “well”. Then my house burned down! This was of course a dramatic life event. I call it a “profound loss” because much meaning came out of it. People were so kind, and gave us many things, including their time, care and concern, and material items. Yet it has been a stressful year, with almost everything in our life changing at once. And often in times of stress we revert back to familiar patterns.
I was not back to square one, yet my issues did “flare” for a while. I lost weight, and as anyone who’s been through this knows, it is a difficult climb back up. .
So, I went back to my therapist for a bit, and started a food journal and a feelings journal again. I talked with close friends who understood. And so I am recovering again.
Then the idea came to me to write this blog about my experiences. I sense that it is a part of my own strengthening to share my journey. I acknowledge myself for taking steps towards recovery – I find it is an active process! For me it is important to recognize my issues, and actively focus on healing.
Once I started, support from others truly helped. For instance, a dear friend taught me a kind of healing meditation. One day, while meditating, I got an insight ~ from deep within my belly and soul. I felt the pain of myself as a young girl, curled up, and feeling that I was not worthy and not seen as lovable by my father. My tears released some of the grief.
Then I quickly realized that I had transferred some of that inner hurt to my relationship with my husband. I subconsciously thought that if I gained weight he wouldn’t love me. (I even thought he judged me whenever we ate.) In my mind, I knew he loved me, but I needed to share this insight with him to help me get past it. A few days later I told him about my experience, and he reassured me he was not thinking or feeling anything like this! It didn’t end the disorder for me, but it did allow me feel freer with him, and helped me see that recovery was now completely in my own hands. I could make the choices and do the work to heal.
Please feel free to leave a comment. I would love to read it and respond. If I can help someone else, it will deepen the good that has come out of my journey.