Sunday, January 24, 2010

There comes a time

I've been struggling... Yesterday, I wrote about how I wanted to change the world, but all I could think about was stupid eating disorder CRAP. I spent last night "acting out" but also pacing between my bookshelves, movie shelves, and piano.

I want to read something, but the only things I have are autobiographies and biographies of people with really hard lives or therapy-type books. I am tired of the hard. I want something fluffy... only I HATE fluffy. I get angry and anxious with the fluffy...

Watch a movie... but I can't bring myself to just sit there. Something inside tells me there is work to be done. Movies with silly characters, annoy me. Anything with sex or violence triggers me. I could force myself to watch that, and maybe eventually it wouldn't bother me so much. But... no...

Play the piano, but there is so much emotion in music. I don't want that.

In the end, I spent the night obsessing about eating disorder crap.

Thinking about it now, I feel selfish. Not in the way that other people have called me, but in the true definition of selfish. I don't want hard. I don't want emotions. I know there is work to be done, but I don't want to.

There is a reason I feel the way I do. There is a reason I have gotten so angry. There is a reason I have been led on this journey. There comes a time when getting angry alone in the office is just not enough. In order to change things, I have to be brave.

What can I do to change the things that make me so angry?
I don't know. One thought: put my blog out there for people to see.
(But they won't want to read that stuff... It is all stupid crap from a silly girl... It won't make any difference to anyone...And I don't know if I could handle that...) Maybe that's true, or maybe one person will see one thing and it will help them.
Actually send the letter I wrote to President Monson... Actually write articles to the church magazines... Actually talk OUT LOUD to someone that could make a difference... Share with others like I have talked about doing... Actually do SOMETHING instead of just thinking about how much things suck.

And maybe doing something to help someone else will help that other part of me realize she can get up. She doesn't have to stay there. She doesn't have to let him keep hurting her.

And maybe, I just might change the world.

Saturday, January 23, 2010

Its just not happening

I had planned to spend the day blogging... or reading... or doing something helpful...

I just don't feel like it. There is a lot I wish I had already written about:
objectification of women/pornography
people in the church have perpetuated the belief that I am worthless because I am a woman, but its not really their fault... its the world we live in...
getting angry
the ride yesterday

But again, I just don't feel like it... I am having a hard time gathering my thoughts well enough to write anything down. Every time I sit down... all that is there is eating disorder...I know there is so much more than that. I KNOW it! So, why is this SHIT (literally) consuming my brain?

I want to make a difference in the world. I want to inspire others. I want to make people laugh and smile. I want people to know that just because they have been through hell, they don't have to stay there. I want to share the miraculous.

Instead, I am thinking about the evils of cookies and DDR and silly stuff like that...

Tuesday, January 19, 2010

Thanks so much!

Talking to a tech at CFC... She said, "I hear you are doing SO GOOD! That is awesome!"

"So good"... what does that even mean?
I ate my dinner tonight
I spent the day crying uncontrollably for no reason...
I just finished yelling and screaming at my poor husband... again for no good reason... except that he is male...
I slept like two hours last night, and that was filled with night terrors...
I am so angry at you for even saying this, I am currently picturing clawing your face...

So, yeah, I guess I AM doing so good...

And then, I smile and say, "Thanks so much!"

Monday, January 11, 2010

I thought everyone thought like me...

57 guys signed up to play basketball in our ward. Two teams.

Dann asked if there was anyone willing to "sit this one out". I was sure EVERYONE would say they would... He wouldn't even have enough for one team.

55 guys said they "want to play every week!" (In other words, I don't care that the slots are limited... I want to be the one that plays!)
One said he was willing to be a reserve player.
Dann said he would sit it out. (He REALLY wanted to play, but wanted to give someone else a chance.)

How could I have been so wrong?
I guess that is why EVERY WEEK, we hear about how we shouldn't be selfish... we should think of others...

Two guys... TWO! were willing to give up what they wanted for someone else...

You're right! I'm not a size ANYTHING. I am Jen.

I went swimsuit shopping with a friend yesterday. She was stressing that now I know what size she wears. In an effort to get her to stop stressing about the DAMN NUMBER, I said, "Presently, in my closet I have size 1 to size 10, and I wear that whole range. It just depends on the cut... SIZE is NOT important!!"

Her reply, "There is no way you are a size 10!"

You're right! I am not a size 10! I am Jen, and I just happen to wear the clothes that fit. I don't care what number that is... 10, 1, 7, 42... It doesn't matter!!!

She didn't understand. She still thinks she's right. She entirely missed the point...

Friday, January 8, 2010


In an attempt to cope with life... while not being able to ride horses in the mountains... I have taken up photography... Just for fun... at least it gets me outside:

Who's a survivor?

Last week, I wore my new "Survivor" sweatshirt to Wal-Mart. (BJ bought it for me. I wore it while we were riding because I didn't think the horses would care.) I had just gotten back, and hadn't taken it off... I didn't think I would see anyone I knew. I was wrong.

N... The girl who's trial was that her husband went to basic training for three weeks... The girl that I feel cranky towards whenever anyone talks about trials.

I hid from her. I know she saw me. We made eye contact... but I was scared she would read my shirt, and think... What?!? I wasn't sure... I just couldn't let her see me... and know THAT about me...

Today, all of facebook decided to post the color of their bra in an attempt to bring awareness to breast cancer. I refused... I just didn't want to... The whole thing frustrated me. The final straw came when an acquaintance (notice I didn't use the word friend...) posted, "So as far as this color thing is concerned-I will just say that my color is whatever color a "survivor" wants to be."

Inside my brain, I lost it. ANGER. If I had been congruent, there would have been explosions coming out of my ears and smoke from my nose. But I didn't understand why I was so upset, and Dann was sleeping, so I just sat with it. And now I am blogging about it...

How dare SHE call herself a survivor. She lived. So... Does that say anything about those that die? And that's the WORST that can happen... you either live or you die. And everyone talks about it, cares about it, helps those with cancer through it... To abuse survivors, they say such things as:
  • When are you going to get over that?
  • Why do you need so much attention?
  • It was just sex... what's the big deal?
  • Stop talking about it...
  • Or they just get uncomfortable... and I feel like crap because they are uncomfortable
To clarify, I want a cure for cancer to be found. I know it must be awful to go through the chemo, and the fear of dying... but... there are worse things than dying.

And I can't even go to Wal-Mart with a survivor shirt on without feeling like I am dirty, disgusting, horrible, sick, attention-seeking, etc. etc. etc. And she can just post it, and people congratulate her? Call her an inspiration?

People don't know. Don't understand. Don't care.

I lived. I continue to fight, to live, to survive, and maybe someday to thrive and make a difference. No one knows how long or what it will take.

Can I call myself a survivor if most people will never know about the battle? And no one knows when or what it takes to win?

Saturday, January 2, 2010

Stroke of Insight - Sleep

It was a while ago that a friend of mine suggested the book, Stroke of Insight. I bought it, but then couldn't convince myself to pick it up and read it... A few days ago, I picked it up again...

The book is about a brain doctor who suffers a stroke. Dr. Jill Taylor tells what it was like to literally "lose her mind" and then find it again. Reading about her recovery, reminded me of my own...
She talks repeatedly about the importance of sleep to. I marked several passages about it:
"On and off throughout the day, the energy in my body waxed and waned from a little bit of energy to a completely empty tank. With sleep, my reservoir filled a little and then I spent that energy trying to do or think something. Once my reserve was used up, I had to go back to sleep. I learned that I had no staying power and once my energy was shot, I fell limp. I realized I had to pay very close attention to my energy gauge. I would have to learn how to conserve it and be willing to sleep to restore it."
How many times have I experienced that completely drained feeling... limp... but I forced myself to keep going? lots...
"Over the course of several years, if I didn't respect my brain's need for sleep, my sensory systems experienced agonizing pain and I became psychologically and physically depleted."
Ummm... sounds like almost everyday of my life... hmmm
"I firmly believe that if I had been placed in a conventional rehabilitation center where i was forced to stay awake with a TV in my face, alert on Ritalin, and subjected to rehab on someone else's schedule, I would have chose to zone out more and try less. For my recovery, it was critical that we honor the healing power of sleep. i know various methodologies are practiced at rehabilitation facilities around the country, yet I remain a very loud advocate for the benefits of sleep, sleep, sleep, and more sleep interspersed with periods of learning and cognitive challenge."
I believe rest is far more important than anyone understands. So many people pushed me, saying, "It's depression." It WAS depression, because things weren't right, and pushing... didn't really help.

Slowing down, resting, laying down in my little corner... is so necessary. Going s-l-o-w is when I process the past trauma and things change. The more I push, rush, hurry, etc... Everything gets so jumbled, I forget my own name.

At least its not a million (anymore)

Recovering from a stroke is not that different from recovering from PTSD and an eating disorder:
"Recovery was a decision I had to make a million times a day. Was I willing to put forth the effort to try? Was I willing to momentarily leave my newly found ecstatic bliss to try to understand or reengage with something in the external world? Bottom line, was I willing to endure the agony of recovery?"
I walked around in a numb daze. It was not what I wanted, but at the same time, it was hard to leave the comfort of the numbness. And recovery... has been agonizing.

The comfort of the numbness, the dissociation, and disconnecting, still call to me... Am I willing to endure? I have endured a lot... and I suppose you could say I hope to endure all things... But I still have to make the decision to recover at least a hundred times a day.

That's something no one tells you at the beginning...