Saturday, June 2, 2018

Probably My Last

I doubt anyone reads anymore, but just thought I owed one (probably) final update as my ED is gone and I don't have much interest in/time for blogging anymore.

When I say the anorexia is gone, I mean really and truly gone. I eat pretty much whatever I want, within normal adult reason (aka a reasonable amount of calories, snacks when I need, try to eat lots of vegetables and protein, try to limit carbs, but nothing is really off-limits). My friend and I go out for tacos and margaritas about once a month, where I stuff my face with chips and salsa before the drinks even arrive. And it doesn't ruin the rest of the night, or the next morning, or anything at all because it's fun and delicious. I cook all the time, and I enjoy food shopping, experimenting, sampling, and all the things that normal grown-ups who like food do.

I've also eased way up on exercise. Note to my former self: adding 30 min of weight lifting twice a week will do more for your body than all those miles and miles and miles of running. I have abs! And I eat more, work out less, and weigh less than I have in about 3-4 years. Who knew?

I have a year left of my PhD. It's going well, though I'm ready to be done with school and get out of this sad, racist, backwards Midwestern city (I'm allowed to say it; I've lived here for ten years.)

I'm also in love. Like, head over heels, crazy, nuts in love. My boyfriend and I are moving in together in a couple weeks (my parents are thrilled; his....less so, but learning to accept my non-interest in Jesus.). It's one of those stupid, boring-for-everyone-else relationships where we just feel perfect for each other and couldn't imagine life without each other. He sends flowers to my office randomly about once a month. He lets me wake him up at 7 on the weekends when I get bored even though he'd love nothing more than to sleep until noon. He lets me drag him to all sorts of dumb work and family events so I don't have to go alone. He hates Trump possibly even more than I do. He treats me like a fucking queen; and more importantly: like his equal. After many frustrating, non-satisfying, dead-end, non-starter relationships, I really wish I could go back and tell my younger self to RELAX, DON'T SETTLE. It's so, so worth it to hold out for the right one.

We talk a lot about how if we'd met when we were younger, we probably wouldn't have been able to hold onto each other. We were both so wrapped up in our own shit (me with my ED and my anxiety, him with his own stuff) that we weren't ready for a relationship; I truly had to get my own life in order before I could be a good partner. I wish someone had told me 2 or 5 or 10 years ago that it was okay to not have anything figured out, to be a little selfish and independent and disastrous, and that that was all part of the process of being 20.

I started this blog when I was barely out of my teens. I'm 27 now, and man do I feel it. But so does everyone, probably. By your late twenties, I feel like you should have lived through some shit and be ready to let a lot of it go. And then you hit 30 and realize how young you are.

Much love to all. I'll check my email here periodically so don't hesitate to get in touch.

Tuesday, January 24, 2017

Popping In

I do.not.know why I never want to blog anymore. Maybe I've just gotten out of the habit? Maybe I don't feel like thinking and writing about eating disorders anymore? Maybe I'm just older and bored? Anyway. If anyone is still reading, some updates:

- I'm in my second year of my PhD, which means: fewer classes, more teaching, more research, more impending deadlines. It's a real lifestyle change to not be running between classes anymore; I pretty much just have a desk job now, punctuated with one or two classes a week and meetings with my advisor. I'm teaching a lab section this semester too, so my workload will grow once things get going and I have assignments to grade.

- PhDing also means traveling like crazy. In the past year I have been to:  California, Louisiana, New York, and D.C. twice for conferences. This weekend I'll be in Florida for a workshop. In March I'll spend a week in the UK for a project. In June, I am tentatively going to Toronto. This homebody has had to learn to pack a suitcase and get over her intense hatred of airports.

- My weight is rock solid, if anyone cares. It's been about three years of staying within the same 2-3 pound range, with very little effort from me. I mean, I still watch what I eat. I'm very aware of calories, and I sort of "unofficially" count them in my head, but I'm pretty loose about it. I exercise regularly but not religiously. (Sometimes I'm a little religious about it. I tell myself it's to keep my anxiety in check.) Sometimes I feel fat; mostly I just feel this vague apathy about my body. I don't love how I look, I wish I were thinner, but I'm old enough and I've been at this long enough to know that this is simply how I'm built, and trying to fight my way around that is neither sustainable nor advisable.

- I've been dating a bit. I went out with one guy for a few months this summer/fall, but we ended things in December. He was nice and all, it just didn't totally click. I never had that head-over-heels feeling, you know? I'm kinda/sorta casually hanging out with someone else right now, but it's pretty new and I think I might already be ready to pull the plug before things even get started. Ugh why don't I ever fall for the nice ones???

Welp, that's all I've got in me at the moment. Hope everyone is doing well. Sorry to disappear.

Sunday, August 7, 2016

August Already?

Sheesh, this summer has flown by. Can't believe classes start up again in just a few weeks. I just got back into town after a few days in Big East Coast City for a conference. The actual conference was pretty boring, but I ditched early and went sight-seeing. Today I'm back in my office sending the obligatory awkward follow-up e-mails to all the people I got business cards from.

So...I did my first online dating escapade/relationship/breakup (all within about two weeks!). I had seen Online Guy three or four times, but decided by then that I wasn't really feeling it. Unfortunately he WAS really feeling it....showed up to our last date in a suit and bowtie (because I had told him I thought they were cute), with a bottle of wine (because I'd told him I liked wine), with play tickets (because I told him I liked plays). ARGH. So obviously I couldn't break it off then.....we had an awkward conversation about how "maybe we should slow things down" or whatever, then today I finally did the deed for real. Ugh. That's never fun.

I have two more tentative dates coming up this week - STAY TUNED. Hey who here watches The Bachelorette? Because that is literally my life right now.

So I had a weird experience this morning. I decided to go running in a new/old place—a.k.a. it was a place I used to run in college, but haven't been back to in several years. So I was huffing and puffing along Memory Lane when I started crunching some numbers in my head:

—It had been 6 years since I last ran there.

—I now weigh 32 pounds more.

—My runs are now 2-3 miles shorter (and I'm no slouch now, mind you)

—Take the number of calories I used to eat per day back then, quadruple it, and add 200. That's how much I eat now.

Crazy, no?

Monday, July 25, 2016

Adventures in Online Dating (and other updates)

This online dating thing moves quickly, it seems... After I first met my ex (the old-fashioned way) last August, it took him six weeks to actually follow up. I've only been on this dating site for like eight days or something, and I've already met someone, hung out with him twice, and have another date lined up with Guy #2 on Wednesday.

I used to swear up and down I would never ever ever do online dating, but turns out every (as in, EVERY) one of my single friends is on Tinder or Bumble or OCCupid or Match or whatever else the kids are doing these days. Anyway, my date with Guy #1 went great - he is super adorable and sweet and nerdy in the best way possible. We actually hung out again the next day, totally spontaneous but felt so easy and fun. So, consider me crushing :) Date with Guy #2 is later this week; we've been texting a lot but I haven't actually met him in person yet. He has promised he "has never seen Dexter" so he won't "stalk or murder" me. And who says romance is dead??? It feels really weird and kind of icky to be going out with two guys at once....any experience/opinions/judgements about this???

So overall it was a busy week/weekend - Thursday was Taco Night at a friend's apartment, Friday was drinks and dinner with an old college friend, Saturday was date #1 (dinner and gelato), and Sunday was date #2 (exploring a neighborhood downtown).

I just saw my psychiatrist for a three-month follow-up. I adore her. We agreed things are going A-Okay in the anxiety department—perhaps due to a lighter schedule or the new drug cocktail (on 20mg Prozac and 1mg Klonopin as needed). Anyway, it's always a nice feeling to run out of things to say with the shrink, no? That being said, I actually did pop a Klonopin today for the first time in several weeks. I was feeling super antsy and nervous and approaching freak-out mode....not sure why, perhaps too many new people, too much being out and about, too many new feelings etc. etc. etc.

Oh, and another weird thing - I've been feeling really fat lately. Not sure how else to describe it, just that visceral sense that you are jiggly and too much. I had thought it was PMS-related bloating, but it didn't go away after my period ended, and I was feeling SO ICKY and self conscious; I convinced myself that the Prozac was indeed, despite my psychiatrist's assurance, causing me to gain weight. I've been afraid to step on the scale but this morning I finally did (first time in MONTHS) and whaddya know, weight is rock solid. Still within the same 2-3 pound range I have been for at least two years.

As a result of too much play and not enough work, I am swamped today finishing up work for my advisor, and grading final papers for the class I TAed earlier this month. Happy Monday, everyone!

Wednesday, July 20, 2016

Stormy Musings

Things have slowed wayyyy down after a crazy few weeks. I was traveling quite a bit at the beginning of the summer (home, conferences, visiting friends) then my mom was in town for a week for the 4th, I taught a class for a month (five hours a day, four days a week....BRUTAL) which just ended. Now I'm just finishing up grading final papers, and my advisor is out of town for the next two weeks which means FREEDOM.

The weather in College City abso-fucking-lutely sucks and I'm so over it. Weeks and weeks of brutal heat, plus almost daily rain/thunderstorms, plus out-of-this-world humidity = cranky Kaylee. Is it too much to ask for a moderately temperate climate, Midwest? Is it?!? Holy Jesus literally as I've been sitting here writing this, another thunderstorm just rolled in. GET ME OUT.

Otherwise, I suppose the biggest news from the past week is that I got a haircut (I LEAD A VERY EXCITING LIFE). My hair was sooooo long, like almost to my waist. I got four inches cut off, but of course my hair was so long to begin with that it's almost not even noticeable. I've been growing my hair out for about three years now with only periodic trims, so this was a semi milestone. Even though it doesn't really look all that different.

Each of these could probably be its own post, but as you can tell from my recent blogging habits, it would probably be overly ambitious of me to attempt that. So here are a few developments:

- I'm in a fight with my best friend. But...she doesn't know we're in a fight. In other words, I'm super annoyed with her for reasons that are too specific and complicated and longstanding to explain here, but haven't talked with her about it. So I'm stewing silently and being passive aggressive and distant. #maturity

- I'm having lots of insecurities about academic/professional/career stuff. This summer has been hard because I'm working on lots of random stuff for my advisor without any sense of compelling purpose. I'm not loving any of the projects I'm on right now, which has me feeling very ambivalent and half-hearted about my work. Plus I've gotten TWO manuscripts rejected by journals in the past month, and my self-confidence has taken a serious hit. I've been thinking about what it means to be in this field, fighting for publication and funding and tenure for the next decade at least, and questioning whether my present career/life plans are right for me.

- I joined OKCupid. God help us all.

Friday, June 17, 2016

TGIF: Anxiety Edition

Things were going just swimmingly for several weeks, but my anxiety has spiked again over the past few days and I can't quite pinpoint what triggered it. My schedule is pretty laid back - I'm doing research with my advisor, but nothing insanely strenuous or time-consuming. I've had plenty of time with friends the past couple of weeks, I love my new office and officemates, things are going generally I DON'T KNOW. I'm just having a lot of those old freaky-outy feelings again, like a nervous pit in my stomach, the same thoughts churning over and over in my mind, ruminating over what is that small red dot on my finger, was that twinge in my foot another stress fracture, what if I get another eye infection, what if the nerve pain comes back etc. etc. etc. all day long. After not touching the stuff for at least a month, I've taken Klonopin three days in a row. It definitely helps, but I hate taking it every day because (1) I worry about getting dependent/it losing effectiveness, and (2) It means my current SSRI dose is probably not sufficient, and I don't want to have to increase because WHAT IF I DON'T KNOW.

But objectively things are going well, which I try to focus on. I made a new friend who has turned into a major support for me, and I recently reconnected with an old friend from my masters program, so I'm feeling a little less lonely than I was before when a bunch of my friends moved away over the past year. I've submitted three manuscripts to journals, and have another couple in progress with my advisor so hopefully at least SOMETHING won't get rejected. I might have a sweet teaching gig set up in the fall for which I will get paid serious $$$$$ (serious $$$$$ for a poor graduate student, I's all relative....).

Fun stuff: Spent the night at my cousin's on Tuesday to drink wine and watch the Bachelorette (yo wtf is up with Chad), and went to happy hour with the aforementioned old friend on Wednesday, then yesterday tagged along on an impulsive trip to the zoo. Way too hot so we didn't last long, but it was a nice outing anyway.

A few book recommendations because in the summer, I READ:
- One of Us: The Story of Anders Breivik and the Massacre in Norway (nonfiction)
- Behind the Beautiful Forevers (nonfiction)
- The Narrow Road to the Deep North (fiction)
The Turner House (fiction)

Sunday, June 12, 2016

Recap and Obsessions

Hiya folks, long time no blog. DEEPEST APOLOGIES. I've just been...I don't know, not in the mood? Out of the habit? Out of practice? Anyway, life continues.

I just finished Year 1 of my PhD program (HALLELUJAH), which means several thing:
(1) I am halfway done with coursework (we have to take classes the first two years)
(2) If all goes according to plan, I am 25% done with the whole degree (I am trying to finish in four years)
(3) Last week I got to move out of the communal "first year office" (shared among all ten of us...) into my brand new beautiful QUIET office, which I only share with two others. Sometimes I just sit and listen to the silence in wonder.

It's been a crazy few weeks. The first weekend in May, I drove up to Northern State to see my best friend for a few days, went home to see my parents/celebrate my dad's birthday on the East Coast for 10 days in late May, stopped back in College City (Midwest) for one day, then flew out to a conference on the West Coast for three days. Then I got back and promptly got sick. Still super congested and hacking away, but at least it seems like this virus is finally on its way out. I HATE PLANES. I had fun (and LOVE LOVE LOVED SUNNY WEST COAST CITY) but I do need a break from traveling for a while. My next trip will be another conference back on the East Coast in August.

Anxiety has been better (other than a small spike this morning...which I'm hoping was an isolated incident). I've been on 20mg of Prozac for several weeks now and either it's really working, or my life has just gotten a lot less stressful since the end of the semester. In fact, this morning was the first time I've taken a Klonopin in weeks, which is a huge improvement from where I was for most of the spring. Anyway, good weather helps, getting back into running helps, having a social life helps, visiting Mama and Popsicle helped, so maybe things are stabilizing after all.

Big improvements on the ED front - while I was at my parents' house, my mom had cornbread. I haven't eaten cornbread in FOREVER, even though I love it. A while back I gave up all unnecessary bread products, and definitely all non-whole wheat bread products. But that cornbread was so gosh darn good, I actually got some for myself once I got back to College City and have eaten a piece with dinner every single night for the past week. And I've discovered I love Subway's flatbread sandwiches (used to only get whole wheat), so now I order those even though they are—gasp—white.

Haven't done this in a while but a random list of things I am obsessed with:
- The Bachelorette (HI CHAD)
- Stephen Colbert. I still preferred him on The Colbert Report to The Late Show, but damn is he funny either way.
- The Stanford rape victim's letter. If you haven't read it yet, DO IT. THE WHOLE THING.
- Chrissy Teigen. Follow her on Twitter, she's hilarious.
- The podcast "2 Dope Queens." Proceed with caution if you are easily offended, prude, or racist.
- Cornbread (just reiterating)
- Gnarly Head Pinot Grigio #bwg (basic white girl) (don't even curr)