Monday, October 31, 2011

Halloweekend Recap

Sometimes the weekends take more out of me than the work week - this one especially. Lots going on in terms of school, friends, random activities, food stress, etc. Plus, I'm sleep-deprived.

First of all, thank you so much to everyone for the comments/e-mails about the medication question; it's hugely reassuring to hear about other people's experiences with or without drugs, and helps me see the issue more objectively. I'm not one hundred percent decided either way, but will definitely discuss it more with R this week. In general, I just feel a whole lot better and calm about the whole situation. So, thanks!

My date went well! Scary, but well. Scary in terms of the food part, well in terms of the date part. The restaurant was just as terrifying as I had anticipated - I did pick out a menu item ahead of time, but the dish ended up being much bigger/gooier/richer than expected. I wasn't particularly hungry either, which always makes food extremely unappetizing to me.

BUT I soldiered through, ate a decent portion even though I didn't really like/want it, and tried to focus more on the conversation than the puddle of grease on my plate. Before going, I had sort of made a commitment to myself to just eat like a normal person, not look weird, and not freak out because it was just one meal. The hard part isn't thinking one meal will make me fat, because I know that it won't. The hard part is not knowing the ingredients or the calories, and sitting with the gross, fat, full feeling afterwards.

Despite that, I had a really good time. He paid. Again. So....yup.

Afterwards, my roommate and I had a quick date recap while assembling half-hearted Halloween costumes, and then went out to a party at our others friends' apartment. I think the alcohol helped me loosen up a bit about the big dinner earlier, because I had a great time and, for a while, forgot about feeling fat. I am not a big drinker (CALORIES), but I do love nice, girly mixed drinks. I get made fun of for how weak I make my drinks, but I call it being economical. Even just a teensy bit of alcohol calms me down tremendously.

The next morning, I woke up feeling super exhausted, bloated, and yucky. Between the salty restaurant meal and extra alcohol calories, I was positive my weight would be up. The smart thing to do would probably have been to skip my morning weighing ritual, but of course I didn't.

So imagine my shock when I stepped on the scale and the number was down.  Not drastically, but below the usual range, and the lowest it's been in months. Obviously, I must have been dehydrated from the drinking or something, but I was still taken aback. My body baffles me.

Yesterday was spent frantically catching up on homework, taking care of random errands and laundry, and trying not to obsess about my weight, food, calories, or boys. After all the excitement, I was dozing off by about ten-thirty last night. So, a successful weekend overall, I think. But I'm kind of relieved that it's Monday.

Saturday, October 29, 2011

Date Night

New source of stress in my life. I'm shy so you don't get all the juicy details, but suddenly there's this dude who keeps wanting me to go out to dinner all the time!

I kid, I kid. He's actually a really good friend who I've known since freshman year, and we may or may not be progressing beyond the Friend stage. Currently, we're still navigating the are-we/aren't-we question, which is complicated by the fact that we've known each other for a while already. But we've had a few solo dinners out together, and thus far he has insisted on paying every time. me old-fashioned, but I'm assuming that officially makes these Dates?

Oddly, I kind of like dating, even though it can be awkward as hell. I like getting to know a person one-on-one. I also tend to get along with guys really well, whether as friends or boyfriends or whatever. One of my guy friends here once told me that I'm "more laid-back than other chicks," which made me snort water out my nose laughing because I am the least laid-back person you will ever meet. Yes, I am beyond skilled at hiding my neuroticism.

So in the past few weeks, I've actually been doing pretty darn well playing it cool and going with the flow in terms of food with this guy. (Should I assign him a letter? Maybe not yet.) I've told him a little bit about the anorexia, nothing hugely specific, and I definitely gave him the impression that it is basically In the Past and totally Under Control.

Tomorrow will be a test, though. He's taking me to a restaurant that serves a type of cuisine I am NOT comfortable eating, and would otherwise avoid at all cost. I checked the menu online (obviously) and there is nothing remotely "safe." Nothing that wouldn't be a huge challenge to eat even without the added pressure of being on a date.

I can't decide if it would be better to pore over the options tonight and freak out/obsess/pick something ahead of time, or put the issue out of my mind and not worry about it until I get there. Hmm. Mostly, I wish I could just chill the fuck out about food and look forward to a nice dinner with a nice guy.

Wednesday, October 26, 2011

Drugs Revisited

Anyone have any experience with SSRIs? I know I've been opposed to medication in the past, but lately R has got me reconsidering. It's not so much for depression as it is for the constant counting, circular obsessions, and endless anxieties over minuscule matters that seem to have gotten worse in the past few months. Are there calories in Sprite Zero? In multivitamins? Toothpaste?

In therapy today, I was talking about my calorie-counting habit. How my brain seems wired to automatically start counting any and everything. R seemed struck by how present these thoughts really are for me, and how this might be the biggest barrier keeping me from committing to the meal plan and making real changes. He made me wonder: what would my mind be like without counting calories? Without all the background noise?

Lately, my moods and thoughts have just been so unpredictable. My brain is exhausted. What if a pill could regulate everything, bring me back to normal? I hate the idea of a foreign, artificial substance messing with my insides, but what if it helps?

Biggest fear: weight gain. ALLEGEDLY, according to R, Prozac doesn't cause weight gain like other anti-depressants, but I'm skeptical. Does it just increase appetite? Because I can deal with that. That would probably even be good for me, considering how unwilling I am to eat when I'm not hungry. But if there's some magical chemical process outside my control that will actually make my body bulk up  - well, I don't think I'm down for that.

I haven't made any decisions yet, and I would absolutely rather NOT take anything. But sometimes my irrational obsessions and fears make me think my brain needs a little help.

The possibilities of side effects and dependency are really freaking me out, and I would love to hear if anyone has any experience or advice! Feel free to comment or e-mail me:

Monday, October 24, 2011

Honesty Homework

One of the goals R set for me this week was to tell my roommate that I'm struggling with my eating disorder and ask her to eat more regularly with me. This wouldn't be that big of a deal - my eating disorder isn't a secret and we've talked about it before - except that I feel like it would draw SO MUCH unwanted attention. Seriously, there's no better way to kill my appetite than to scrutinize my eating habits. It makes me want to take my plate into the next room and scrape off all the food into the garbage can.

R is convinced that if I make my friends aware I'm struggling to eat enough, it will keep me accountable and reduce my anxiety about the increased intake and weight gain.

I'm convinced that if my eating is suddenly under the microscope, I'll freak out, have a nervous breakdown, and lose my mind. And somehow, inexplicably, get fat in the process.

Either way, R is probably right that I should try to eat with others more often - but easier said than done. I still have major anxiety about eating around other people because I worry about: a) looking weird, b) eating too much and getting fat, c) not eating enough and getting hungry again five minutes later. So yes, eating my own food in my own kitchen is much simpler.

I did manage to shake things up this weekend though - in fact, I ate in restaurants twice (yeah, TWICE). People, this is big. I hate restaurants. Or at least my eating disordered-self does. This actually is a good gauge of healthy-Kaylee versus ED-Kaylee because I used to love going out to eat. Not just for the food, although I liked that too, but for the whole festiveness of the occasion. Now? Not so much. Break in routine, unpredictability, unknown calories, etc. - all the usual suspects. So this weekend was an exercise in both social eating AND quitting the counting habit.

Anyway, back to R's assignment: I sort of indirectly brought it up with my roommate last night, just mentioning that things have been a little stressful because I am "supposed" to be eating much more than I am physically or mentally comfortable with. No mention of specific foods or meal plan requirements or the case of Boost stashed under my bed.

So...I guess I partly completed the exercise? For some reason, I don't think R will be totally satisfied with my half-hearted attempt. I didn't exactly mobilize the Food Police the way he seems to want. I just hate making my eating disorder an issue with others. Mostly, I hate the prospect of being forced out of my comfort zone. Call me stubborn.

On the plus side, I actually DID buy the Boost.

Sunday, October 23, 2011

Positive Thoughts

I promise I'm not such a downer in real life! If for no reason other than to keep my last post from showing up front and center, here are some happy things in my life:

- I love my classes and I love my job. And I love getting paychecks! (Boo unpaid summer internships.)

- My two best friends and I had a delicious dinner out earlier tonight. I didn't restrict or overexercise beforehand, and I was okay with it. I even got hungry later and ate an extra snack.

- The school/work/social balance is starting to come together. Fewer teary meltdowns.

- I had a really good session with R this past week. Good in that it was challenging and a little uncomfortable, but ultimately helpful, I think.

- I have an awesome Mama Bear who calls just to talk and has lots of good advice, even when she drives me nuts. ("Yes, Mom, I'm doing what Dr. R says. No, I'm not drinking too much. Yes, I get enough sleep.")

- Speaking of sleep: the horrible insomnia I had for most of last fall semester has not returned. Hallelujah. In fact, I've been sleeping really well, assuming I get myself to bed at a reasonable time instead of messing around on the internet or catching up on TV shows.

- I got an A+ (do they even still give those out??) on a paper that I worked really hard on and was really proud of.

- There might be A Guy.

Saturday, October 22, 2011

Monster Mood Swings

Sometimes my mood is so unstable it scares me. I can be fine in the morning, too busy to notice by afternoon, and ready to cry by dinner.

Like yesterday, for example: wake up, coffee, gym, shower, breakfast. All good. Class, lunch, and coffee/killing time with friends, which put me in a fantastic mood.

But then I walked home in a cold rain, my head hurt, my backpack was too heavy, and by the time I got to my apartment, I was practically in tears. No reason whatsoever, other than the fact that I was tired and everything seemed like too much.

Dinner became a nightmare because I was starving but didn't actually want anything. Option A wouldn't fill me up, Option B didn't sound good, and Option C just wasn't right. I just wanted to get it over with because I had a ton of reading to do, but decision-making was not happening. So I was hungry, exhausted, and basically falling apart at the seams.

Then my roommate came home, and a five-minute, completely mundane conversation with her brought me back to earth.

I know that part of it has got to be hormonal because it's back - right on schedule. My appetite is insane right now, leaving me empty and achy and worn out all the damn time. Combine that with cramps and bloating and a constant dull headache, and you haven't exactly got the makings of a happy camper.

Part of it is stress - I'm busy and worn out, but don't feel like I have a right to it because my class schedule right now is lighter than any other semester thus far. So I vacillate between anxiety over schoolwork, guilt about not doing "enough," and frustration at still feeling overwhelmed by a relatively underwhelming course load.

Part of it is also loneliness, because my apartment is not convenient to campus and I don't really live near a lot of friends I saw regularly last year. Usually I need my alone time, but lately I've just been too stuck in my own head. Sometimes I can't focus on anything because the whirl of worry is too strong for me to pull myself out of without external distractions.

My concentration is abysmal, my self-esteem is non-existent, and my anxiety levels are through the roof. I spend half my time running around in a manic half-hypoglycemic haze, and the other half collapsed in total body-numbing exhaustion. I lose track of my moods because they seem to change hourly. Just one day - one hour - of brain silence would be priceless.

I know this is the kind of thing I need to talk about with R, but it's hard to articulate. His priority is getting me to gain weight, but I quite honestly have zero desire to devote any more time and energy to food.

Monday, October 17, 2011

Relief and Running

Crazy busy last week/weekend. I just handed in the last of three BIG papers that I've been working on for the past two weeks or so, and feeling a slight sense of relief about finally getting those finished. For some reason this semester, school stuff just isn't coming as easily as in the past, and it feels like I'm struggling so much more to accomplish the same amount of work.

My job, however, is going really well. Without getting too specific: I get to do lots of issue-related research and interviews with various academics and professionals. For the first time in a while, I find myself getting totally engrossed in projects and forgetting about the millions of other things that are usually weighing on my mind. Like weight.

I've recently started running again after taking time off for a hip injury this summer. It hurt a little at the beginning, but has settled down since then. Maybe this isn't a good thing from a recovery standpoint, but getting back into running feels beyond wonderful. I'm being really careful to take it slow, not do too much all at once, and mix it up with intervals of walking, but still, wow. It feels so good.

Admittedly, my caution has more to do with a fear of re-injuring my hip than it does with a fear of falling back into anorexia, but the ends justify the means, right? And running just makes me feel so much stronger, so much more exhilarated, than any other kind of exercise. So I am satisfied with doing less of it than I would be with, say, biking.

In semi-related news, my metabolism has been freaking out lately. Eating makes me hungrier. Is this possible? I swear, within thirty minutes of finishing a meal, my stomach starts growling. You'd think extreme hunger would make meal plan compliance easier, but mostly it's just irritating.

Although, it is making me wonder about intuitive eating a bit - like, what would happen if I just ate when my body said FEED ME? The idea intrigues me, but I honestly don't think it's possible at the moment. I am way too aware of calories to ditch the counting habit, and as long as the tally is going in my head, I wouldn't be able to choose foods without calories being the main consideration. So, maybe something to think about in the future.

....and my neighbors just brought out the bass and amps. I'm off to go pound on the wall.

Friday, October 14, 2011

More or Less

Lately I've been thinking a lot about where I was a year ago. Getting competitive with myself, I guess. Compared to last year, I now weigh more. I eat more. I know more about myself - what my limits are.

I also cry more. I worry more.

Last year, I had more fun. I liked myself more. I laughed more. I took more classes. I was involved in more clubs and activities. I was more productive. I put myself right in the thick of things until my low heart rate put me in the hospital. Until then, anorexia hadn't taken me out of commission whatsoever - and I feel like recovery has.

I'm better off now -  I know that. But there's more anxiety, more stress, and more self-consciousness. Everything makes me nervous. Part of me wants to go back.

My confidence is just shot. I feel like I can't do the same things I used to be able to do. I used to zip through my reading each night, grind out papers, sail through exams, raise my hand in every class, and still go out every weekend and have a fantastic time.

But now? Now I can't concentrate on a textbook for more than five minutes at a time before I start picking my nails and jiggling my leg and counting calories in my head. Essays take me forever to finish; the ideas just aren't there. In class, my mind starts spinning and it feels like everyone else is three steps ahead of me. I got a B on an exam that I was positive I aced. (Yes, I know I won't get much sympathy for that. But it still bothers me.) I am so fucking uncomfortable in my body that sometimes being around my friends - even the best ones - makes my skin crawl.

My mom has gotten more than a couple distressed calls from me. I freak out randomly about things that do not deserve my attention. I hate hate HATE how I look. As if it even matters.

After almost nine months of treatment, I feel like there's less of me in me, even though there's supposed to be less of the anorexia. What gives?

I am, however, finding that I have more intense friendships. I rarely go out with a big group anymore, but I go out with one person, or two, and feel more alive afterwards. Last weekend, one of my best - and first, actually - friends here took me to dinner. We couldn't get a table for an hour, so we walked around the neighborhood, just talking. Then we spent two hours in the restaurant, talking. Then he took me home and we talked some more.

So, maybe less fun, but more memorable? Less adolescent, more adult? Less exciting, more important? Sometimes it's just so hard to accept that I can't be who I was before. I was manically productive and my days were jam-packed with a million things I couldn't wait to do - but I was sick. So I can't be that anymore, and I'm not sure where to go from here.

Thursday, October 13, 2011


Double treatment session this week, so I saw my dietician J first, then had therapy with R. I think they had pow-wowed about me since last week because J went right to work upping my meal plan.

She prescribed that yummy liquid goop - BOOST. Which I despise. It's expensive. It tastes bad. It makes me feel sick. It's humiliating to buy. I don't want to leave it sitting in the fridge for my roommates to see. So I haven't bought any yet, but may do so this weekend. Haven't decided.

One thing J focused on was me creating a treatment setting for myself. Like, having meal support, meeting people for dinner, showing my roommate my meal plan, etc. The point, I guess, is to keep me more accountable by telling other people what I need to be eating - but that is just SO not my style. I barely talk about my eating disorder at all with anyone. So it would be weird and uncomfortable to suddenly ask friends to babysit me during meals.

J was also big on separating "Kaylee" from the "eating disorder" this week. When I said that restaurants are stressful for me, she jumped in with, "Restaurants are stressful for your eating disorder." Well, okay. But it's not exactly as if I can excise the eating disorder from my "real" self at the moment. It's too intertwined. So for now, we're stuck with each other.

Then R. He was twenty minutes late coming out to get me from the waiting room, and I was super irritated until I realized that he had been meeting with J (who I had just seen) about me.

Something I felt better about this week was that it seemed like they both listened to me when I said things like I don't think I can do that. I told J that I honestly wasn't sure if I could drink as many supplements as she wanted, so she told me to at least get them at the store so that I would have the option, and then just do what I could. Then I told R that I didn't think I could gain as much weight as he wants - that I wouldn't ever be able to fully commit to it because it just feels too unnecessarily high. So he agreed to let me aim for a range - the lower limit is where I last got my period and the upper limit is the ultimate weight he and J originally wanted.

For the first time, I felt like they were being realistic about what I would and would not do. I didn't want to feel bullied into agreeing to something just to make them happy, knowing that I wouldn't follow through. I hope it doesn't sound like they're letting me off easy - the meal plan was substantially increased and weight gain is still absolutely nonnegotiable. But now, I no longer feel like the weekly goals are so far out of reach that I don't even want to try.

Sunday, October 9, 2011

The Ritual

Exercise hasn't always been tainted by anorexia-fueled motivations for me. I was always an active kid; I played a ton of sports, primarily soccer and lacrosse. In high school, I got hooked on cross country and track, and now long-distance running is still my exercise of choice. I get really antsy after sitting still for too long on any given day, regardless of what my eating habits were like on said day. I genuinely believe that I need a daily (or almost daily) sweat-sesh to maintain a happy, productive, sane state of mind.

THAT BEING SAID... I'm having a bit of a problem. Lately, my workouts aren't excessive, per se, but they aren't exactly healthy either. I don't spend insane amounts of time at the gym, but I go every. single. day. At the exact same time, too. The gym employees could set their clocks by me. I rearrange my schedule to accomodate my exercise time. I freak out if something gets changed, and I immediately go into damage-control mode to make up for the moved/shortened/altered workout.

I have gone through periods of working out much, much, much more than I do now. Over the summer, it was bordering on the extreme (although I was eating much more then, too). But that's not really the problem anymore. Recently, it's just been all about the ritual. Wake up. Drink coffee. Work out. Shower. Start day.

I feel like I can't miss a workout or everything would collapse. Actually, I don't think much about what would happen, because I wouldn't even consider skipping a workout. It isn't a decision anymore. It just happens. It's just what I do.

I'm not sure what my rationale is, either, because I don't pay attention to the calories I burn or adjust my intake based on expenditure. (Still wary of the BMR issue.) It just doesn't connect in my head. There's a vague sense of Maybe I should eat a little less since my run was a little shorter today, but I don't do any calculations or anything. My thinking is more like: I will feel so gross and lazy and awful if I don't work out today, so why skip it? What is so special about today that should merit a day off?

I feel like I wouldn't be able to function after skipping the gym because I'd be so preoccupied by guilt and disgust with myself. Even knowing that one day off wouldn't affect my weight, and that it would in fact probably be beneficial to give my muscles a break, I just can't justify it. So I guess I'm more scared of feeling fat than actually getting fat?

Yet again, my brain's lack of logic astounds me.

Friday, October 7, 2011

Fifty Facts

In honor of my 50th post, here are fifty facts about me:

1. My favorite meal is a peanut butter and banana sandwich - breakfast, lunch, or dinner.
2. I have chronic dry eye.
3. As a kid, I played soccer, lacrosse, softball, tennis, basketball, and field hockey - but running cross country in high school was the one sport that stuck.
4. When I was four, my older brother punched a kid for being mean to me.
5. I hate wearing makeup, but love painting my nails.
6. In elementary school, I had several pet frogs. Never got that puppy I always wanted, though.
7. My favorite colors are purple, green, and orange.
8. I hate grape-flavored anything.
9. Currently, my favorite TV show is Mad Men.
10. I also love Weeds.
11. And Modern family.
12. And 30 Rock.
13. Sometime during my freshman year of college, I went on a mission to watch all six seasons of Lost. I made it through the beginning of season four (maybe five?) and then it got too weird so I never finished. Still don't know how it ends.
14. I watch too much TV.
15. If there were no such thing as humidity, I wish it could be 95 degrees and sunny every day of the year.
16. Although I do like fall foliage and nighttime thunderstorms.
17. Violin was my biggest passion for a long time.
18. I started playing when I was five.
19. Public speaking terrifies me, but for some reason I never got nervous performing.
20. I tried to keep practicing violin my first few semesters of college, but I was just burnt out.
21. I know that I'm cheating on this list by splitting up facts over multiple numbers.
22. Whatever.
23. Fifty is a lot.
24. I have both ears pierced twice.
25. My bedspread is reversible - one side is pink and the other is brown. I flip it at random intervals based on my mood.
26. I spend too much money on books and coffee.
27. I really want to stop counting calories. I don't know how.
28. When I was a little kid, I used to fantasize about living on a farm. Now, I can't imagine not living in a city.
29. I met my best friend when we were two years old.
30. I met my other best friend two years ago.
31. My ex-boyfriend was arrested last year for something horrible and I can't imagine that he actually did it. But people change, I guess.  I don't know what to believe. We broke up my junior year of high school and I haven't spoken to him since graduation.
32. One of my cousins has been in college for seven years. He keeps switching majors.
33. I don't know how the hell he's paying for that.
34. There's no way I could pick just one favorite book, but some of the contenders are: Beloved by Toni Morrison, Half the Sky by Nicholas Kristof, Madness by Marya Hornbacher (who also wrote Wasted), The Road by Cormac McCarthy, and The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo trilogy by Stieg Larsson.
35. One of my non-food-related rituals is watching an episode of a TV show followed by reading a chapter of a book in bed before going to sleep.
36. My mom speaks fluent Spanish. She was very sad when I stopped studying it after high school.
37. I am an incredibly light sleeper. Anything and everything wakes me up.
38. When I'm not going through a bout of insomnia, I sleep six hours a night like clockwork.
39. I have never broken a bone, but I've dislocated my toe three times.
40. I've also had a million various overuse injuries from running - hip flexor strain, tendonitis, shin splits, etc.
41. All four of my grandparents are dead.
42. My favorite holiday is Thanksgiving.
43. According to my dietician, I drink too much water. I swear it's not an ED thing - I'm just always really thirsty.
44. My mom and dad both work extremely hard. I am so thankful for everything we have, and that they have good insurance and can pay for my treatment. My parents have never deprived me of anything (I mean, within reason) that I really wanted or needed. (Although I never did get that puppy.)
45. This is a really long list.
46. I can't decide whether to go with a Blackberry or an iPhone when I get an upgrade. Thoughts?
47. I was supposed to study abroad this semester but the damn anorexia screwed that up.
48. Both of my parents are lapsed Catholics. I wasn't raised under any religion, but I am fascinated by all of them. I used to tag along to church with one friend, and regularly went to another friend's house for Shabbat dinner on Friday nights. Last year, I wrote a paper on Scientology for a class. This semester, I'm doing a project about prayer in Islam.
49. My vision is terrible. I cringe to think about how bad my eyes will be when I'm, like, eighty.
50. DONE.

Wednesday, October 5, 2011

Failing at Therapy

R wants me to gain weight so that we can move forward and talk about things other than food.

I want R to fix my brain first so that I feel okay with gaining weight.

Obviously, he's right and I'm sick. But the bottom line is: I don't feel capable of adding calories and gaining to the weight he wants. I just don't. At this point, my mind won't let me. I'd hate myself too much.

To clarify: my weight is NOT in a danger zone. It is lower than optimal, but not deathly (I swear!). So yes, I should gain the weight that R wants - or at least regain the weight I've lost since May - but it isn't a matter of life of death at the moment.

So it's hard for me to agree with R when he goes all alarmist on me about it. It's not that I'm not taking it seriously, it just doesn't seem like something that needs to be fixed right this second or else you won't make it through the semester. 

Right now, I just feel stuck. I'm not trying to intentionally antagonize R by being a stubborn little snot, but my brain is caught in a rut and the idea of changing up my meal plan with the goal of actually gaining weight is absolutely unfathomable. It's not that I don't think gaining weight is necessary - I do think it's necessary, to a certain extent. I want my period back. I don't want to be ruled by food rituals. I want to be able to eat in restaurants without freaking out before, during, and after. I want all of these things, but I just cannot see myself actually giving up what I have now. Which is, essentially, a pathological obsession with meaningless numbers.  Yay.

There was a moment in my appointment this morning when I actually thought R was going to fire me. He didn't, but did start pushing "more intense treatment." The options he laid out: 1) stick with what I'm doing by seeing R and J each once a week but actually follow the meal plan, 2) see R and J each twice a week, and have my mom come out for "support," 3) start going to group therapy in addition to seeing R and J, 4) start attending IOP in the center where R and J work, or 5) go home.

Obviously, I picked the first option. I basically told him IOP was NOT an option. Not interested. Not necessary, in my opinion, and not exactly feasible with my schedule. I know that health is the priority over school, but still.

So. I guess that's where things stand. I'm really going to try following the meal plan.  But if it were that easy, I would have done it already.

Sunday, October 2, 2011

Settling In

I, for one, am glad that September is over. It's a month of too many changes. And while most of them were good this year (starting my junior year of college after taking a semester off, moving into a new apartment, being back on my own after living with my parents for eight months), the instability of the transitional period left me constantly anxious and on edge.

Now, I'm feeling much more settled. I'm used to my apartment, my roommates, my walking routes, and my classes. I have my daily routines. My anxiety levels have been toned down by orders of magnitude from where they were a couple of weeks ago. Now, my biggest anxieties are school-related, which oddly, I am much better equipped to handle than the little things like running out of yogurt or losing my umbrella on a rainy day or forgetting to do laundry on my one free afternoon. That stuff practically sends me into hysterics.

I am also getting used to R, my new therapist. At first, I was hesitant to see him because he is, you know, a dude, But I'm way more comfortable with him now after only three or four sessions. I really like R's personality and approach. We are still at a bit of a stalemate over the Weight Issue, but I'll get there. I think.

Lately I've been spending a ton of time with my roommate K (same one I visited back in June), and realizing how much better life is with such a good friend. Even though I am incredibly independent and need my alone time to function, I had forgotten how much easier life is with friends. I have been sloooowly opening up to K about the ED, which is big for me. For the longest time, I only ever discussed the anorexia with professionals - e.g. therapist, dietician, doctor. In some ways, that's easier because they are already familiar with the symptoms and don't need to be educated. Real people don't always get it. But when I talk to K about it, she seems genuinely interested in trying to understand my mindset and learn what is helpful/not helpful for me.

Food is more of the same. I really do want to do better because I've been noticing that my energy is definitely down. At times, I find myself slipping into that slightly manic must-eat-now state that only happens when I'm restricting. If I am consistently eating enough to sustain myself, I can hold out for longer and not dissolve into a shaky hypoglycemic panic if lunch gets delayed by an hour. Even though I haven't really lost any weight in the last couple of weeks, I think the recent loss combined with the lower intake (not scary low, just lower than R would like) is starting to take its toll. So I am motivated to turn things around NOW while my brain and heart and metabolism still have a fighting chance.

Okay, gotta get moving. I've got a 14-page paper and two 10-pagers due this week, plus a presentation and a big project for work. Peace!