Thursday, September 24, 2009

Do I Expect Too Much??

I've been very frustrated lately. While I know that my expectations for myself are still too high sometimes, I'm much nicer to myself than I use to be...:)
My house isn't spotless, and I kind of like that I can (do) still use the excuse that I 'just' had back surgery (two months ago) to put off doing housework....very different for me.
Me...the person who would follow a 'schedule' no matter matter WHO was sick, including myself, no matter how much pain I was in, no matter ANYTHING, if I didn't clean my house, blah blah blah....WHAT?? I guess I had nothing else to cling other way to feel safe..although I wasn't.
So now I have no clue when I plan to 'clean'. My house isn't dirty. I'm still anal about clutter, but a little dust, some pretty cat what?
Now what was I saying....?
I'm very frustrated at the moment with people who say they will do something, then just don't do it. Please don't commit to doing something if you aren't going to do it. And if you do, and something happens that prevents you from doing it, then TELL ME! Especially when there are third parties to know?
Of course I go back to "if you want something done (right), then you have to do it yourself".
For most of my life, I was just too stubborn to ask for help. Or I thought no one could do it 'good enough' (including myself), so of course I just never asked. That section in Nursing School about 'delegating'? Forget it.....
So DO I expect too much? I don't think so. I don't ask much of others. I know when I am thinking critically towards someone, it's usually a criticism of myself....I get that now.
I don't approach very many situations in my life with 'expectations'....huh. I can thank 'the love of my life' for that....what a man....hey, married three years today....WOOHOO!!
I expect to be treated with respect. I expect to be free to speak my voice. I expect that I will treated in like as I treat others....old fashioned? I don't think so.
Yeah...I'm frustrated that my life is narrowed in some ways due to present circumstances. I DO love my Mother-in-Law!! I WILL NOT regret this when I look back years from now...assuming that I am able to do that.
More than that, I know that I allow things to fester more than I should before I release them....THEN I SCREAM!!
So, yeah, I probably take on more than I 'should' sometimes, but who else can I count on...:)

Wednesday, September 16, 2009

River Centre Clinic

Hands down...the River Centre Clinic saved my life. When I write that, I include every single staff person, including doctors, therapists, kitchen staff, program directors, office personnel, and every single one of the women I had the pleasure of being in treatment with. RCC is located in Sylvania, OH...which is actually right alongside the great city (a city is only as good as the people who occupy it, right?) of Toledo, OH...:) During my long battle with my eating disorder, I was in and out of many various types of treatment, including hospitals, psych wards, and specific ED treatment facilities. People ask me how I finally did it. Hmmm...I can't say it was ONE thing, but I do believe it was ONE place...RCC. I do believe that my previous treatment experiences were absolutely necessary, for negative and positive reasons, in order for me to end up at the door of RCC on January 21, 2002, desperate to find my path to life. My 'story' exists in other posts on this Blog, so I won't repeat myself. There were many aspects of my treatment at RCC that made it possible for me to fully recover, but the first and most important thing that I was given was HOPE. I had never been told that someone believed I could recover. Many people had given up on me..including myself. There were other aspects of my treatment at RCC that were unique, including....the scientifically-based treatment model that was used, which allowed me to utilize my obsessive mindset to propel me toward recovery....rigid meal planning...personalized therapy and treatment plans....a carefully planned aftercare plan for prevention relapse...their attention to the continuum of care, beyond the PHP program.....the constant focus on the development of MY identity....outside and without an eating disorder...and something that I never considered important-developing a support system by forming healthy and honest relationships. My recovery didn't happen quickly...but it has certainly become COMPLETE!! The most amazing thing for me now is to wake up and not feel fear. I had lived my life in fear before recovery. I have an amazing ability to LOVE, and I love laughing and being totally and completely silly! I now think a lot about TODAY, and what is important RIGHT NOW. After all, do any of us really know that we have tomorrow? I have seen many adolscents, young women and middle age women find hope and health through their treatment at the River Centre Clinic. Check it out at !!!

NEDA Conference

I had an amazing experience last weekend in Minneapolis at the National Eating Disorder Conference! It was truly an honor to be able to meet and share with some of the experts in the field of treatment and research of eating disorders. Not only did I learn a great deal, but this experience has expanded my vision for my own work in this field. I ask myself daily, "how can I make a difference"?
The Conference also allowed me to meet some amazing women who have also recovered from their eating disorders. ALWAYS REMEMBER FULL RECOVERY IS A REAL POSSIBILITY...A REALITY!! I met a very genuine, caring young woman named Jenni Shaefer. She is fully recovered from an eating disorder, and has written two books. I highly recommend that anyone with ANY interest or concerns about eating disorders read her books!! She also speaks all over the country, and works especially with students on college campuses. Way to go Jenni!! I came home with a lot of information, and some additional ideas about my own path as I strive to support others in recovery. I'm trying to figure out how to add more hours to my day! Since it isn't possible in the literal sense, I have to decide how I can manage that in terms of balancing my personal life..which is an important goal for anyone in recovery. More to come soon...:)

Wednesday, September 2, 2009

ED-NOS a REAL Eating Disorder?

Anorexia nervosa and Bulimia nervosa are the two most common diagnoses given for someone who is suffering from an eating disorder. If a person is struggling with eating disorder thoughts, feelings or behaviors, but does not have all the symptoms of anorexia or bulimia, that person may be diagnosed with eating disorder not otherwise specified (EDNOS).

Some known examples of EDNOS include:

1. Despite having regular menses, all of the criteria for anorexia nervosa are met.
2. Despite substantial weight loss, the individual's current weight is in the normal range.
3. Binging may occur, but at a frequency of less than twice a week or for a duration of less than 3 months.
4. A normal body weight is maintained, but inappropriate compensatory behavior after eating small amounts of food (such as purging after the consumption of two cookies) is seen.
5. Repeatedly chewing and spitting, but not swallowing, large amounts of food.
6. Recurrent episodes of binge eating in the absence of the regular use of inappropriate compensatory behaviors characteristic of Bulimia Nervosa.
The “not otherwise specified” label often suggests to people that these disorders are not as important, as serious, or as common as anorexia or bulimia nervosa. This is not true. Far more individuals suffer from EDNOS than from bulimia and anorexia combined, and the risks associated with having EDNOS are often just as profound as with anorexia or bulimia because many people with EDNOS engage in the same risky, damaging behaviors seen in other eating disorders.

Often, people categorized as having ED-NOS are basically anorexic or bulimic, but cannot be classified as such because of a technicality. Obviously, ED-NOS can very easily lead to a diagnosis of one of the two other clinical eating disorders. Some sources point to as many as 50% of eating disorder cases being diagnosed as ED-NOS.
In the meantime, if you mention "ED-NOS" to most laypeople, they will not have a clue what you are talking about. While anorexia and bulimia get all the publicity, people diagnosed as NOS are often left in the shadows. They may look at the criteria for anorexia and bulimia and feel puzzled. They know something is "off" about their eating habits, but feel invalidated because nothing out there tells them that what they have is in fact an eating disorder. Invalidation, usually unintentional, may also come from family or friends. (The person who has lost fifty pounds by starving themselves but is still overweight will more likely get praise from loved ones rather than concern, for example.)
Even though ED-NOS may not get quite as much publicity as its more infamous "cousins," it is important to remember that ANY eating disorder has the potential to be lethal. In the long term, it's not the label that matters; it's the PERSON. And a person diagnosed with ED-NOS deserves just as much care, consideration, and support as any other eating disordered patient.