1. The act, process, duration, or an instance of recovering.
2. A return to a normal condition.
3. Something gained or restored in recovering.
4. The act of obtaining usable substances from unusable sources
Recovery is one of those tricky words. Where no matter how many times I see the word, I can’t feel it. It doesn’t matter how many times I say the word out loud, or write it down, it just seems unreal to me. It’s just a word. Just a word made up of 4 syllables and 8 letters. Just one word that has so many meanings and I am still trying to grasp it.
Ten years ago if you would have told me I’d be in recovery for an eating disorder, I would have told you, you were crazy. Even just writing that down, is absolutely weird. Ten years ago I couldn’t have even imagined how my life would just fall apart. That who I am today is a fraction of the person I was in the past. I’m not the same person I was a year ago. I’m not the same person I was since I started this bullshit mess. That’s what it is to me. It’s bullshit. A waste of my time. My time that I could have spent enjoying life instead of obsessing over every calorie and wondering how much longer it would take to purge everything out. I know parts of me still harbor a monster inside, I’ve just learned how to tame it. Some days I wish I could just start over. New person, new body, just someone different from who I am.
Recovery isn’t easy. Even at my 2 year mark of being eating disorder free, it hasn’t come easily. I still have a hard time with food. I still obsess about the outcome of everything I put into my body. While I am healthy it’s still hard for me to come to terms with the body I see before me. I look back at photographs of when I was sick and couldn’t understand why I was so hard on myself. Why I treated myself so poorly and hurt myself so many times. Its hard to look at the scale and see the numbers increase instead of decrease. It’s hard to see people work toward their fitness goals and I’m just slowly coming to terms with my body. A part of me tries to look on the bright side but reality is it’s hard. It’s hard to hold back the urge to be my expectation of perfection. It’s hard to see my body change and be okay with it. This is reality and most of the time I am not okay with what I see.
Recovery is a process. Its this work in progress motion that brings us to where we need to be. Every day I struggle with the balance of feeling okay and feeling miserable. Just as with emotions some days are good and some days are complete nightmares. Even at two years, I still have so much to work on. I need to find that balance of letting go and being okay. To find that realization that being healthy is better than being perfect. It still gives me severe anxiety to hear people talk about their bodies. Somewhere in my twisted mind, I start to think that about myself. I snap out of it but the struggle starts all over again. This never ending struggle of being okay and being perfect. I wish that with recovery you can just erase the past years and be completely healed. Maybe then it wouldn’t hurt so much to hide this pain. The reality is you have to let that notion go. Let all those negative feelings leave and look at the positive things. I am healthy now. I am getting better. With each year, I find strength through the struggle. I will never be my expectation of perfect. I will always struggle with how I look. I have to be able to come to terms with being healthy is better then dying.
Recovery is my salvation. Recovery is what will eventually set me free from this bullshit feeling. Getting rid of a lifetime of negativity won’t happen in a day. As much as I wish for this feeling to disappear instantly, I know that every day is a process. I am always going to be a work in progress, I just have to finally be okay with the imperfections. I am not and nor will I ever be perfect, I just have to accept that. Only then will I truly be free.
Here’s to healing and all it’s glory.