So, what is it like to be free from and recovered from a chronic eating disorder? My life is far too different to relate everything, but I'd like to share a bit about this past weekend. I drove down to my hometown, 325 miles away, for a GNO (Girl's Night Out) on Friday, and then I stayed until Monday morning to celebrate my Mother's birthday and visit with my family. Would I have been excited to see classmates from 35 years ago if I still had anorexia? No. I would have been embarrassed, too tired to be up after 8:30 pm, and just not interested in trying to talk to people when my brain was fried from starvation.
But I was very excited to be going!! I saw many friends from HS, plus people from my community who I think may have thought I had died. I ordered dinner without a second thought. I walked up to people and talked to them whether I was sure they knew me or not. I danced like a schoolgirl and sweat like a football player, and I had the time of my life!! The ONLY drawback was that my sweetie was back home taking care of his Mom. That's the way we have to do it right now. I wore myself out, but left with some new happy memories.
My relationship with my Mom is better than it's ever been. I'm not afraid to say what I think, even if I know she doesn't agree with me. It's OK for me to be different..to be ME....and I've found that my family actually shows me respect for standing up for myself...now. I miss my Dad. Memories of him are everywhere. I cry and move on, and focus on what a respectful, loyal man he was. That doesn't mean I always agreed with him.
I visited the cemetary where my son is buried. The Azalea I planted in April is thriving. I talked to him. I cried. I told him I love him, and I left with a picture in my head of he and my Father laughing and riding the tractor (John Deere of course!).
My siblings and I got together and celebrated my Mom's birthday...a bit early. I eat what I want....really eat....and I enjoy my brothers and sister for who they are, not for how I measure up to them. I wasn't waiting for them to leave, as has always been the case in the past. I picked green beans in the garden. I went to my brother's house that night to celebrate his wife's son's 30th birthday. But the real reason I went was to see the 7 month old twins and the 6-week old baby boy of my niece and her husband. Babies are popping out all over down there....:)
Rested more on Sunday....ate fried chicken for the third time in a row...who cares? But by Sunday night, I knew once again that I would never be able to live there again. I would smother to death. Too many memories and reminders of being sick. By the time I loaded up and started back home on Monday, I couldn't wait to get home.
I didn't count calories or meal plan while I was gone. My body is beginning to know how to care for itself. My weight has been stable for many months. I praise God that I can trust my body and mind to allow me to be healthy. But I'm not naive. I will always keep meal planning in my life to keep me stabilized. I've been through Hell, and I don't want to go back there again.