what in the …

hi guys,

so some of you have been following along on my journeying around the west coast, to finland, back again then recent unexpected sudden return home. its been a very interesting last couple of years to say the least. although there have been some truly good times with absolutely unbelievable people and events – the truth is that i have trying to outrun a debilitating eating disorder.

i’m just starting to come to terms with the severity of the disease by starting to take a step back and looking at the wreckage and path of reckless destruction it has left in its wake. it is a long, interesting tale that varies between anorexic behaviors, incredibly lonely periods of bulimia and more recently a close call with reaching the brink of permanently destroying my body and mind through excessive exercise and restriction.

my irrational and fearful mind has been trying very hard to break free from the daily mental hell by moving, running and fighting to get back to the days of clear thinking bliss. it has been nothing short of confusing, scary and sad.

after finally being fed up, i went to finland on a quest for healing – to get back to my regular, happy, healthy self.

i found my peace through the power of exercise and the mental salvation of yoga.

unfortunately, people affected with this disease often have a tendency for excess which resulted in losing 20 lbs in 6 months. (they also have been known to crack their knuckles, have social anxiety and a history of escaping to europe, burning out and coming back – seriously).

all my hair started falling out, i lost my period but i was under the illusion that it was to do with something other than my eating disorder. I had thought that I had made a lot of progress by leaving my self destructive behaviors behind in the States and was just incredibly active and ate incredibly healthy now, right? wrong.

although, i tried to start gaining weight so that i could keep up with my new found love yoga (and have a pair of pants that fit) the weight loss continued and with it the deterioration of my mind and choices. i started got the chance to start working as a kindergarten teacher and absolutely loved it however i had become so underweight that my cognitive abilities and focus were (and still are) significantly diminished.

it became so hard to focus at work (took me 10 minutes to wipe down a table) yet i couldn’t stop utilizing the gym as a way to break free from the constant stress, worry and anxiety about food and weight. my life was a constant state of shakey nervousness and obsession – it was incredibly difficult to be social or be anywhere other than my church – aka the gym.

things spun more and more out of control but i couldn’t see clearly that i was killing myself. thankfully to a few amazing friends that saw my illness, physical and mental state decreasing – i finally looked into getting help and decided to come home where health care and family would hopefully help me to understand what was happening.

upon my arrival (really not sure how i even made it on my own) my phenomenal family was waiting with open arms – even after years of horrible, impulsive decisions impacting us all.

since being home I have thankfully been checked into a partial hospitalization outpatient eating disorder treatment program and finally don’t have to be alone in fighting this demon anymore. i am more grateful than words could say.

currently weighing in at 94 lbs (up a few lbs from my worse state), my resting pulse is 48 (a male athletes should be around 60), can wrap my hand around my bicep, barely able to focus for even a short conversation, am incredibly nervous and obsessive around food and am in constant state of feeling like im on a spaceship. there is nothing funny or cool about this. i have been so disorientated and the only thing i have been able to think about or focus on is food. i haven’t even really been able to listen to music anymore which is probably the saddest thing in the world.

the effects of semi-starvation are incredibly real and the doctors have helped to explain some of my weird behaviors through a study that was done in WWII on a group of men:  http://matchstickmolly.tumblr.com/post/3261188113/starvation

although today was my first day of recovery, i am already feeling extremely hopeful. it will be a very long journey before my health and mind restored – but being in amazing hands with an incredibly supportive family around me makes it finally clear that i don’t have to move, run or fight this demon in my head on my own anymore ( but that suddenly clear thinking might just be from all the food they are feeding me).

eating disorders have nothing to do with food or weight. they are tools of control that usually mask something much bigger and deeper and often help guide us to finding our purpose and what we are truly here to do. Exercise (even though I am banned from doing any right now), yoga and meditation have already shown me that there is a part of me that is untouched by all this, a part of me that is infinite, perfect and beautiful (and guess what, it is within you guys too! 🙂 ).

sorry if this bums any of you out that like to think that my life is rainbows and sunshine, but i find it far more important and fulfilling to be real since i am certain now that i am not alone in having this internal sadness and emotional hunger that is creates an inability to deal with reality. if any of this rings true with any of you, or if you have struggled with this or any other type of mental suffering and pain – know that you aren’t alone. the moment you surrender and let others in is the moment you can finally get the tools you need to break free and find the inner peace you so seriously deserve.

back to work at crazy girl camp. see you guys in saneland soon ❤

love, peace and joy –

c

Image

oh man.

so as i am re-tracing my (mis)steps of this last year, I am retraining myself to be a rocking and rolling, radical human.

it’s quite a transition to go from a caged up, pound puppy that is deathly scared of breakfast to the confident, fearless lion girl that lies inside. so I have been utilizing a lot of different sources for inspiration and methodology.

seriously guys, i have to retrain myself in every aspect of life. socially, spiritually, physically and emotionally. as i’m breaking free from the self-inflicted cage that mental illness is, i get to design a new identity. it’s scary, fantastic and thrilling. so far I have switched from listening to sad, depressing music to listening to techno and house. I have started surrounding myself with people that align with the person I want to become. I listen to self-help tapes like a maniac, found salvation in Neurolinguistic Programming and go around repeating positive affirmations like it ain’t no thing. Every time a disordered thought or action tries to sneak its way back into my reality (which happens often) I take a step back, recognize it and ask myself if this is something my perfect soul or damaged ego would think or do. Usually, if it is destructive, then it is the latter and I can begin to hug and smother is with love and light.

sometimes I am successful, sometimes I’m not.

the other day my brain seriously felt like it was burning. but i’m convinced it’s just from the rewiring of my neurological pathways from negative to positive. i’m sure smoke will be emitting from my ears pretty soon.

progress is being made though. i managed to get through the anxiety of getting ready, styling whats left of my hair and having a really lovely, mostly behavior and negative inner dialogue free evening with a really inspirational human.

oh! and the coolest technique I have discovered (and am rocking extremely hard right at this very moment) is to FAKE IT. Ok, that sounds weird since part of this journey has been rediscovering how to be myself and who “myself” even is. But seriously, when I get anxious or scared I just start pretending that I am the person I would want to be. The best characters I have discovered to slip into so far is the Air Force Pilot Woman (the aviators might be to blame for this one) and the Incredibly Fancy French Lady. I absolutely love this form of visualization because it’s impossible to not glow with confidence when I am these dream versions of myself. It’s also extremely fun to gaze out a window, with my baguette, cigarette and small hat. Just kidding I didn’t get a small hat or start smoking… yet.

It is also helping me get an idea of what the very best version of me looks and feels like.

I want to be that version of me today. And then an even better version tomorrow.

ciao mes amours.

 

p.s. note to self: if all else fails, just walk around with this always playing: