Sunday, August 21, 2011

The First Good-Bye

I had my last session with W today, which was kind of sad but not tragic.  I really do like her and I think we were just starting to make some progress (considering it took me about six months to fully warm up to her).  It's frustrating to have to start all over with someone new in College City, but I really prefer the idea of seeing someone in person rather than staying with W via phone sessions.  Actually, W was the one who said that was probably a better plan, since she thinks I "give away more with body language" than I do with words.  Huh.  Not sure how to take that.  Maybe she just needed an excuse to get rid of me.

I wish I could report having an earth-shattering therapeutic breakthrough in honor of our last session, but no such luck - just some rehashing and wrapping up old stuff.  W asked me what some of my longterm recovery goals are, and I came up with: A) less rigidity with food/exercise/timing and B) less obsessing about my weight, e.g. not letting an upward fluctuation derail my entire day or a downward dip put me on cloud nine.

Then W added C) be more open with people about my feelings because according to her, I don't like looking vulnerable.  To which I say, who does?  But okay, she has a Ph.D. so, I'll try.

Looking forward, I am sort of interested to see how a new therapist operates, and to compare her approach with W's (oh, and also to recover from anorexia).  But honestly, I'm feeling a bit ambivalent about therapy in general.  It has been over eight months and I'm starting to wonder what, if anything, has changed.  My weight went up, then went back down a bit.  I started taking a drug, then stopped.  I've been seeing W every week and opening up even when it's hard and uncomfortable - but not many of my thought processes have changed at all and this does not make sense to me.  Shouldn't I be cured me by now?  Why do I still count calories obsessively and work out X minutes a day, every day?

It's just so frustrating to find my head in the exact same place it was six months ago, eight months ago, a year ago.  Thousands of my parents' dollars have been sunk into this treatment thing and I'm still clinging to my same old rituals and anxieties.  Tell me, W, why am I still like this?

Hopefully this lapse in motivation is just end-of-summer introspection gone wrong.  I am not under any illusions that I can or should get by without therapy, and I'm completely committed to starting with someone in College City as soon as I can set it up.  It just would be nice to have something to show for my past eight months, aside from a few extra pounds and frustration through the roof.


  1. I feel the same way you do. My therapist keeps telling me it takes TIME, TIME and more TIME. I really hope she's right...
    Sometimes I feel completely free of ED, others I know he's still got a hold on everything I do.
    I pray it's just time, recovery work...or a miracle...I wouldn't say no to waking up "cured"

  2. A therapist once told me that she rarely sees an ED patient for less than 2 years if they're serious about being fully recovered. It is a looong, slow, pain in the ass process, but hang in there and don't let yourself get stuck in neutral. Maybe seeing the new person will bring a bit of new perspective and kickstart some more progress for you. I know what you mean about taking a while to warm up to people, I have had a couple of therapists "fire" me because my shell just wouldn't crack.

    I am so excited for you to be starting back to school, because I know you've wanted it so badly. Hang in there and trust that you can do this, because you can, and not only that but you will be GREAT.

    Fingers crossed that it works out with the new therapist! Is your current treatment team going to send over a report or case history to the new crew? I found that to be really helpful when I had to transfer treatment when I started grad school.