Tuesday, June 25, 2013

The Elephant in the Room.

It took me a long while to decide that I was actually going to start blogging again.
I'll be honest, blogging gives me slight anxiety. And when I say slight, I mean MUCHO GRANDE (if you don't know Spanish, relax, neither do I, But I think it means something along the lines of big?)

So now that I've admitted to the uncomfortable feeling that I get when I think about blogging, I think it might be necessary to explain to you why it is that I'm doing it anyway.

First things first.
I'm going to expose the elephant in the room. And maybe you're thinking what elephant?? Which is not surprising because I'm very aware that this elephant blends in extremely well (with my African themed room and all) and most people aren't even aware that its there.

 ...I really do have an elephant in my room right now, which is why I was compelled to use that metaphor :)

Okay. I'll just get straight to the point.

I have been struggling with an eating disorder--or more specifically, bulimia, for the past 4..ish years of my life. And actually, let me rephrase that. I have been SUFFERING with bulimia. There. That more accurately describes my experience because it truly has felt like suffering rather than struggling. Struggling sounds much to mild for what it has been like.

Now, before you say anything, DONT SAY ANYTHING. Honestly. There is no need for any comments because my experience with peoples responses haven't been very good ones. But just some advice...if anyone ever tells you they have an eating disorder, do not, I repeat, DO NOT respond with anything close to the following:

"Really?? You don't Look like you have an eating disorder"

"Wow! I never would have guessed! You look so healthy!"

I could probably make the list longer, but I think you get the gist. My point is, comments like those are anything but helpful and truth is, to have an eating disorder does not mean you have to look emaciated. A person with bulimia can look average and sometimes even overweight. That doesn't mean that they aren't engaging in harmful behaviors multiple times a day. Another truth that people fail to recognize is that an eating disorder is more of a mental thing than it is a physical thing. Sure, it may affect your appearance quite a bit, but what its really destroying is your mentality (and your health).

Anyway, I am not telling you this very personal information because I'm seeking sympathy or attention in anyway, and no, I do not feel special or extraordinary for having an eating disorder, because unfortunately, what I'm dealing with is all too common. In fact the majority of people reading this have either suffered from an eating disorder themselves, or know someone close to them who has, so please don't misinterpret my intentions.

With that said, why don't I go ahead and tell you my intentions for this blog. That way there won't be any confusion.

 I have had the amazing privilege of spending the last few months living in a rehab facility for women and girls with eating disorders. I have since moved home but I still attend the day program there and I am still battling my eating disorder every day. Although it has been hell, I also see it as one of the biggest blessing in my life. And because I feel so blessed, I would feel selfish not to share what I'm learning in there with everyone I possibly can. If it were in my power, I would make everyone go and spend a few weeks in there whether or not they had an eating disorder, because the skills/tools we learn to use in there would benefit anyone. But since it's not feasible to send all of my loved ones to a place like that, I have committed to taking what I'm learning in there and passing it on in any way that I can. And what better way to do that then a blog??

 I have this overwhelming desire to help people. Maybe that's why I want to go into nursing. But while I wait for that dream career to come true, why not find other ways to help people. I believe I can help people by simply inspiring them. And the best part about inspiring people is that unlike nursing, I don't have to get accepted by a program to be able to practice it. I can be completely imperfect but still be able to inspire someone else. I believe that we can learn a lot through other peoples trials and shortcomings.

So I guess this blog is your invitation to come along on my personal journey to finding myself, and my hope is that maybe you'll be able to find parts of you along the way as well.  

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