Sunday, January 18, 2009


Anxious. Sometimes I feel a bit anxious when my responsibilities seem too much, and my qualities seem too little. Or I feel anxious when I do not feel enough, or too much at the same time. I feel anxious when I haven't called my parents in awhile, and they have to pin me down so we can talk for 10 minutes. I feel anxious knowing that I could be nicer, more laid back, more efficient, more funny, or more care free. I feel anxious when I am overwhelmed by good things in my life, good opportunities, and yet I can make them sound like burdens. I want to write more music, read more books, learn guitar, continue drawing, learn to be more environmentally conscious, be vegan, lower my cholesterol.

Too much. Thus, I feel a bit anxious.

The above list is nothing more than what anyone else deals with on any given day. I'm not saying I'm unique, I just seem to get more easily overwhelmed than most. Those thoughts keep bombarding me, making me feel like somehow I am running out of time (which is funny because the title of my blog yesterday was, "There is Time").

I'm up and down. But some things tend to bring me back and calm me down.

Today I was listening to a mix that Ben Yancer sent to me in Cambodia. I was craving new music, and so I played those CD's over and over and over again, until I learned the words and the melodies played in my head all day long.

One particular song I remember listening to while walking down the busy Cambodian road. The sun beating on me like punishment in the 90 degree heat, sent sweat trickling down my face. The rhythm of the music matched with the cadence of my feet. The men stared and yelled at me. The children pointed. Choking on the dust through my surgical mask, I tried to pretend that my reality was as calming as the music in my ears.

I was taken back and reminded to be grateful for what I have in front of me. I am not in Cambodia. I can heal now.

This morning I "stumbled" upon a picture I drew 2 years ago by orders from my eating disorder counselor at that time. She told me to paint her a picture of what recovery looked like to me. So I drew a peaceful Heather, more content with who she was. Someone who had a greater purpose than just battling the demons inside of her. Some one that I was making up because I saw none of these qualities in myself at the time. It was a nice wish, basically to imagine I'd ever be any of those things written on the paper.

On it, I wrote: "What does recovery look like? It is healing of the five areas of my life: physical, social, spiritual, emotional, and mental. I will no longer over stuff my body or restrict calories. I will not purge, eat what I "should" or exercise because I have been "bad". I will not lie to people or fake how I am feeling. I will stop using anorexia as an excuse not to pray. I will stop beating myself up. I will no longer allow ED to control my thoughts. I will eat what I want. I will make other people a priority. I will know that God loves me not because of what I have or have not done, but because of who I am: His. I will love myself. I will be present, stable, and aware. I will live in moderation and balance. I will love my life and look forward to each new day. I will live in peace."

Some days looking at that picture was easier than others. I hated reading it and realizing I'd slipped up or it didn't feel like I was getting any better. But now, it's different.

Now I read it and think, Holy cow! I've come a hell of a long way! I'm still working out the kinks on a few of those areas, but I have much to be grateful for, because compared to where I've been, I feel like I can do almost anything.



Carley Brown said...

Its a good feeling! To have come a long way. Some people don't make it that far. I read an article of a girl who died from an ED. I think its amazing that your alive, well, and thriving.