Tuesday, September 28, 2010

Past Meets Present

I have wrestled with whether or not I should write this post. I have wondered if its appropriate, is it too real, is it something other's will want to read. In truth I think I have just wrestled with whether or not I wanted to admit this. But this blog is about my journey to health and well lets keep it honest.

This past weekend I had a run in with my past. Ryan and I went out to celebrate an old friend's birthday in the market. I haven't really been in a bar in the market since I was in my 20's, and in my 20's I was very much a bulimic.
We went to a pub that has changed names over the years but the layout is still the same and when Ryan asked if I knew were the bathrooms were I realized I did indeed know. I had purged in that very bathroom almost 10 years ago. I remember coming to that pub, eating chicken wings with friends, and then making myself throw up in the bathroom.

The memory of that kind of rattled me that night. It was just so surreal to be back there and to think of who I had been then and who I was now.
A lot has changed for sure. No longer a size 4, now plus size, no longer bulimic, now fit and healthy.

But I think what really rattled me was how that memory reminded me just how much that 'past' lingers. Did you know that I often have dreams of binging and then frantically searching for a place to purge. In my dreams the anxiety sky rockets while I meet an obstacle course of challenges to purge. The dreams are much like my other or any other anxiety dream. You know dreams like being back in school and having a test that you are not ready for, or going to work naked. I don't have these purge dreams often but they do happen. I suppose its not surprising when you consider I spent a good portion of my life bulimic.

When I recovered from bulimia I gained weight very quickly. I have spent the last 10 years overweight and have been recovering and healing in many ways. I have always thought that during this time I healed my mind and soul. I was and still am happier and more content as a plus size girl then I ever was as a skinny girl. I don't obsess over food, and it doesn't occupy most of my thoughts any longer. I changed my binging and purging behaviors over for just eating what I wanted and letting it go. All though healthier, I still had and have problems with eating for reasons other than being hungry. Now I have entered what I like to think of as my final stage in recovery. I am getting fit, and I am loosing weight. I am truly striving for total health.

When I started this final leg of the journey, I really thought that it was mostly physical. I thought that what I needed was to get fit, to move, breathe and nourish my body. But I am realizing that yes indeed there is still a mental part to heal.

I have been FAT for 10 years and in a way protected from my past demons. Does that make sense? A few years ago when I lost weight on WW...they crept back. I have written about this before, how the counting of points, and tracking what I ate and such felt too much like my old behaviors. During that time old thoughts crept back in my head, and while they didn't lead to binging and purging they did lead to the black and white thinking that led right back in to fat bliss. I say fat bliss because it was easier to just eat and not deal with the mind games.

But here I am again, loosing weight. I am loosing weight in a healthy manner. I am loosing weight slowly, I am exercising. I am not dieting. Yet...the thoughts are creeping back in. I don't have my fat bliss protection. Sunday night I ate the rest of the kids Pizza Cookie and afterward I thought..."oh dear that was a lot...oh my have I undone my hard work...maybe I should purge." I actually thought that. I haven't had that thought in a very long time. It scared me. I didn't. I banished the thought out of my head thinking of my kids. But still the thought had come to me and that scares me.

I think I am in a better place than say 2 years ago on WW, because I am not dieting. So far I have been able to eat the things I love in moderation. Doing this has helped keep me from the black and white thinking that leads to the binge and purge behavior or even the give up and get fat again behavior. I have recognized that there are certain things I just can't do because they 'F' with my head. Like the scale, that I threw out.

I know that this blog has helped me a lot. There is something about writing here that is so therapeutic. Whether anyone reads this blog or not, there is something therapeutic about knowing someone might read this. I like that it helps me stay real with myself.

So I end today with this....This journey really is a twisting winding road :) But its beautiful.

5 comments:

  1. What a strong person you have become. Strong because you are getting fit and also because you are confronting the past and keeping your head. The thoughts inside us are very powerful and being honest in public is difficult, too.

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  2. Big hugs, beautiful and truthful post. So very proud of what you are becoming and what great strength you have. Love youxx

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  3. strong...
    strong story...
    strong words...
    strong mind...
    you're amazing.

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  4. Katie _ I had no idea we were going through the same stuff. Great blog and good thoughts to you on this journey!

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  5. Katie, I cannot begin to say how proud of you I am. To have witnessed your long hard journey and worried not only for your physical health but your mental/emotional health. It means the world for me to see you on a good, strong path in both regards. You will continue to face your past and old demons will try to coax you, but what defines you is the difference in how you overcome them. Your progress is certainly not ruined by a pizza-cookie and a brownie. What counts to the grand picture, being fit, but knowing when to stop to prevent injury; make smart food choices, but not depriving your self of treats or feeling guilty when you do; and most of all telling that "Bitch Voice" to fuck off, I don't need to purge because tomorrow is another day and I'm better that! Best of all you are inspiring so many others including your own girls.

    Love Pook

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