How to deal with the people

How to deal with the people in your life during recovery…

You didn’t ask, because why would you?

Why would you know something is going on? That something is OK to talk about?

You didn’t ask, because why would you?

How would you know? Why would I expect you to?

I don’t.

One of the toughest parts of facing an eating disorder, anxiety, depression and/or all of the above, is talking about it with other people. Or you know, not talking about it all.

Because you want people to relate, but at the same time you don’t. Many people in your life may struggle to a certain degree, some may struggle more than you, some may not know what you’re talking about at all. And while this may cause strife in relationships, or irritation within yourself when someone close to you “doesn’t get it” — you need all levels of relationships on your journey.

You need someone that gets it, someone that has been there. And while it pains me to think of my loved ones going through anything similar — I am grateful for the friendships that allow me to discuss my struggles on that level.

You need someone that kind of gets it, that you can help from your own experience and strategies in order to mitigate theirs from escalating. You need those that can calm you down while also, kinda, sorta, understanding.

And, you need those that don’t get it at all. For a long time this one was tough for me. I wanted the people I loved the most to ask me what was going on, to take it seriously, to say the right things — to get it. But they didn’t — because they didn’t know how. What I realize now is that these people aren’t there in the way I hope they can be, not because they don’t want to, but because they can’t. Because they don’t know how.

Because they don’t get it.

And thank god for that.

I am so incredibly happy that many people haven’t experienced similar things. I am so incredibly happy they can’t show up for me fully in ways I sometimes wish they would.

And I see that now.

I spent a lot of time when I first started facing what was going on with me alone. Not because I was afraid to tell people, but because I wasn’t getting the responses I hoped for — the responses that probably didn’t exist, the responses that I probably didn’t even know I was hoping for, because it’s possible that nothing would have ever been the “right” thing to say in those moments. But I’m done with that. I’m done wasting years of my life exuding negative energy toward people I love that love me back, simply because they can’t do exactly what I need.

Because the truth is, they’re doing everything they can.

And everyone doesn’t need to be everything to me.

They’re there when I call. They listen when I go through the same things over and over and over again.

They’re there.

And they love me.

And I love them.

And that’s all I need.

I guess all of this is to say, there is not one answer. Not one cure. Not one strategy, one therapy session, one group meeting — one person that will save you.

It’s all of those things and it’s more.

It’s knowing what different people can be to you in your journey to freedom. It’s trial and error. It’s failing miserably and getting back up and trying again. It’s looking deep within yourself and not being afraid of what you might find.

It’s waking up each and every day and making a choice to fight. A choice to get better. A choice to live the life you know deep down in your heart you deserve.

It’s all those things and it’s more.

I’ve been on a path to figuring out my battles for a few years now. Sometimes I think I’m there. Sometimes, I feel like I’m back to square one. Sometimes I fight and other times I don’t. Sometimes I’m honest with myself and sometimes I’m a liar.

I fail. I fail hard.

I get back up again.

I don’t know the answer — I wouldn’t be writing this if I did. But I think that’s because there isn’t one.

It’s a choice. It’s faith. It’s allowing hitting rock bottom to help guide you to the top.

It’s all those things and it’s more.

And I want to say thank you. Thank you for being here for me while I struggle. Thank you for holding my hand when I’m walking alone. Thank you for worrying about me even though I wish you didn’t have to. Thank you for forgiving me for thinking you weren’t there for me when you were.

Thank you for loving me.

For awhile I’ve gone about my “new life” pretending as though nothing is wrong because sometimes it’s easier that way. But the truth is I still have battles. They’re smaller than they used to be, sure. But I still have to fight. And sometimes, I still have to lose.

I don’t know what the rest of my journey looks like. I’m sure it’ll be a total and complete mess most of the time. It’ll be deviated, I’ll stray from the map.

But I intend to keep moving.

This time, I don’t care what my destination is. I don’t care what’s at point B. I care about what’s along the way.

I care about falling and proving to myself that I am strong each and every time I pull myself back up. I care about the unexpected stops in the route, the flat tires, the beautiful highways.

I care about it all. And I accept that it won’t be perfect.

What I don’t accept, is not getting in the car at all.

And I’m scared. I’m scared that I’ll find out that I’m vain, more fucked up than I thought, or anything else. I’m scared of taking my time to do this. I’m scared of admitting it. I’m scared of finding new coping mechanisms and straying from my comfort zone.

I’m scared, but I’m doing it anyway.

I’m living the answers instead of trying to find them — by making little choices to fight and forgive and love and fall and get up and sweat and cry and work each day.

And I guess that’s what I came here to say.

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