Category Archives: For the hard stuff

The Freshman 15

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Twelve years ago I was a freshman in college and I was bulimic.

I would be bulimic with stints of anorexia for the next four years when the obsession slowly faded. There are lots of reasons and feelings that coalesced in to the creation of my bulimia, some of which I may discuss at a later date. There’s been lots of therapy and soul searching; I’ve come to terms with what I put myself through and accepted it as part of my story. Sometimes I can even spin some positive threads around all that I learned from those years of my life. But one of the most ludicrous reasons for losing 30 pounds in a couple months, one that’s never settled in to my understanding comfortably, and one that was at the fore-thought of my mind during the first months of my new obsession was the following: I didn’t want to go back to visit my High School Alma Mater during Christmas break and have my old friends whisper behind my back “She gained the Freshman 15.”

I went to an all-girls High School and cattiness existed, but not as much as you probably think. My friends were amazing, encouraging, supportive, positive young women. Visiting your friends still in High School on the Christmas break of your freshman year of college was something of a right of passage and I looked forward to it. But when I was a Senior in HS, I remember a few girls coming back to visit and, after they left, friends would comment about how much weight they gained. It was out of character for our group which is maybe why it stuck in my head so solidly. I would be damned if I was going to give them that reason to talk about me. I just couldn’t bear the idea of being viewed as having “let myself go” or any other negative connotations attached to gaining weight (and aren’t there so many?)

And so it began. I lost a shit ton of weight so I could allay my fears of being gossiped about. And very quickly, in my head, my weight came to define me and my worth.  Energetically, how I’d show up  to anything became intrinsically tied to the number on the scale. Lower than yesterday? You better believe I’ll be in the middle of the crowd, laughing and smiling and easily making new friends. Higher than yesterday? I’ll be in the corner, not smiling or making eye-contact, or, better yet, at home in bed.

Fast forward to now. My weight has fluctuated up and down for years and I weigh more than I ever have in my life. Typing that out feels oddly satisfying. Like coming clean on a dirty secret.

But why am I telling you all of this? Why is this coming up now? Well, because I’m meeting a friend from High School next week. One that I haven’t seen in 12 years. And do you know what my first thought was after we set up the meeting? “I can’t wait to see what we have to offer each other and how we click; I’m really looking forward to seeing her.” Nothing about my weight and tying it to my worth, nothing about fear of judgement, nothing about not being good enough because I haven’t dieted enough this month. When I realized how similar the situation and how astronomically different my response, I almost cried. The hope that we would excite each other intellectually and have interesting things to talk about outweighed (haha, get it?) the fear that I wouldn’t be liked because I’m no longer a size zero. My priorities have changed. They will continue to change and evolve but right now, I am so happy with where they are.

Change happens. Progress happens. Hard work pays off. Don’t forget to look back and see how far you’ve come; it may surprise you. 

Steps Forward II

Like we always do,

We will make it through, rough spots

Make us stronger now

Step forward

This is the first step

Continue slogging through mud

You’ll find your way back

 

Lost

You are not mine, child

You belong with someone else

I hope you find them

Independence

I am an Island

Sad, Alone, but so Powerful

Maybe not so Sad

Listen to what makes your heartbeat quicken

Danielle Laporte is a genius and this post on forgetting about time management and listening to what gives you a rush is a great reminder. Sometimes you just need to get out of your own way.

Questions to remember:

From Havi:

In no particular order…

  • If I were to rewrite the weekend that resulted in being here now, what would I do differently?
  • What are the parts that I would do again?
  • What does this remind me of? Any elements that feel familiar?
  • Who else has played my opposite role in this situation in the past?
  • What’s my pattern here? And am I doing it now? Yes, yes I am.
  • What are my options now for consciously and lovingly interrupting this pattern?
  • Any scared parts of me from then who need attention and/or safe rooms?
  • Talk to the resentment. What does it know?
  • Hello, “You’ll Never Get Out Of Bed Again”. You must be one of my fuzzball monsters. What do you need in order to feel safe?
  • Would you like to do some coloring?
  • What am I sorry about?
  • I forgive myself for __________ because ___________.
  • Another person I want to forgive is __________ because ____________.
  • What’s the most unexpected thing I could do right now that would still feel safe, supportive and congruent?
  • If I had stronger, clearer, healthier boundaries, I’d probably…
  • The version of me who’s really clear about sovereignty — what would she do?
  • Slightly Future Me has already resolved this. What does she wish I knew?
  • Without negating the legitimacy of the hard and painful bits, what is useful about this experience?
  • What am I learning from this Time in Bed that is going to serve me well with my mission? Note! I don’t have to know what my mission is in order to answer this question.
  • What’s next?
  • What needs to change in my kingdom?

Someone else’s guiding principles.

http://www.gwenbell.com/the-skinny/2011/8/26/the-skinny-guiding-principles.html

1. Arrange your life in such a way that you can practice.

2. When writing, tell from experience.

3. What we say matters.

4. We get one of each moment. No do-overs, no repeats, so it’s best to live on purpose.

5. The body has 9 wounds. It’s each person’s responsibility to dress their own wounds.

6. The only way through is through.

7. The only way through is to live always brokenhearted, open to what arises.

8. Alignment comes from knowing yourself.

 

What are my guiding principles?

3 Simple Rules

A quick reminder:

http://yfrog.com/h3ttpddj

Always test, always push, this is not a dress rehearsal