I don't wish for the courage to end my life.
I wish for the courage to live it.
No matter how many miles you pound, your demons are right behind you.

No matter how much your body aches, no pain is greater than the pain you feel inside.

No matter how loudly you scream, the voice in your head screams louder.

And no matter how frantically you try to escape, you will always remain trapped.

The years are adding up and I'm no further from ED than I was three years ago. Hurting and haunted. The voice strangles my mind. The blows hit just as hard. The shaking just as strong. The urges just as violent.

Is there any escaping this hell? Will this torture ever end?

I have a body.

I have a body.

What a silly, obvious thing to say, "I have a body."

For someone with an eating disorder or disordered eating mindset this can be a realization that is difficult to accept. For having a body means you have to look at it, look after it, nourish it, and take care of it. When you have urges and desires and needs they are to be met.

But when you are dealing with an ED mindset the drive to turn off those urges and desires and needs becomes painful and loud and often times unbearable. You long to escape the body you're trapped in, the body you hate to look at, look after, feed and nourish.

When the sad realization that you simply cannot discard of this body, this thing, this entrapment, every day can become a nightmare, or what I call a "silent hell."

This past week I had fallen back on restrictive ways. I had tasted the comfort of ED. The craziness, the physical pangs, I welcomed all of it with open arms. I was willing to throw away all the days that I struggled to maintain recovery, the mental well being, the physical health, all in the pursuit of "perfection." A perfection I never once obtained when in the darkest days of anorexia, a perfection I know intelligently does.not.exist.

Yet I keep striving for it.

At this juncture in my life the constant pull and back and forth is almost worse than the ED itself. I know the repercussions of restriction. I know all of these positive ways in which to keep my foot in the present and not give in. But that constant strive for perfection... it haunts me.

I used to say I felt like a fraud and that feeling has never felt more real to me than it does right now. I'm crippled by it. How can I possibly want to work in a field helping people to heal themselves when I can't even help myself?

Perfection, denied.

Each day, with each sunrise, I am forced to make a decision: Stay well or relapse. Most days I stand firm in my decision to move forward. Other days, well, it's a massive struggle. Some days I can accept that I am who I am, who I am becoming, and who I am meant to be in this world. Other days I'm simply not good enough. That feeling is almost as familiar as the body in which I reside.

Today, though, I chose recovery. Today I chose to stay present. Today I chose to recognize that I do not need to be anything more or other than who I am. Today perfection doesn't exist. Today I am content with just being me.


I decided to share my writing in a different space and reserve this for something else.....

Leg Workout

I wasn't feeling the gym today so I decided to put together a leg workout of my own. It's important to work all parts of the leg and from as many angles as possible. Most important though is proper form in order to avoid injury!

I performed the following workout as a circuit, from start to finish with a one minute break between sets. I did three sets of 15 reps each (15 each leg for single leg exercises). Don't forget your warm up and save the stretching until you're done.

1. Dumbbell Squat - You can also do a basic squat. Be sure your knees do not go over your toes and keep your back straight.

2. Forward Lunge with Ab Twist - I used a 10 lb weight. Again be sure the knees do not go over the toes. I find it helpful to be mindful of pushing back to the starting position with your heel.

3. Stiff Leg Good Morning - I used a 10 lb weight held behind my neck - but not resting on my neck. Be sure to bend at the hips and do not curve your back.

4. Glute Bridge with Dumbbells - I used two 10 lb dumbbells rested on my pelvis. You can use one dumbbell, a medicine ball, a weight plate, or you can nix the weight altogether.

5. Standing Bodyweight Calf Raises - I did this on part of the frame of my Bowflex. You can do it on a step or anything else that is sturdy. Or you can do it on a flat surface.

6. Plie Squat with Dumbbells - You can hold the weight(s) up or hung between your legs. You can add in a bicep curl, shoulder press, lateral raise, etc., upon standing. Same with the basic squat. More bang for your buck. Doing compound movements uses more muscles and burns more calories.

7. Step Up with Backward Lunge - These are my favorite because they get my heart rate up pretty quickly. When starting out it's best to start with a low step and work your way up. Move slowly so as to not lose your balance. Also dumbbells can be incorporated as you progress.

8. Stiff Leg Dead Lift with Dumbbells - As with the Good Morning bend at the hips and don't curve your back. Bend down until you start to feel a pull in your hamstrings and slowly rise back up.

9. Single Leg Calf Raises - This can also be done standing on a flat surface if you don't have a ledge of some sort. Be sure you have something to use for stability, such as a wall or railing.

10. Donkey Kicks + Fire Hydrants - I did the set of donkey kicks followed by the fire hydrants for one leg and then switched to the other leg. I feel it more when performed this way. But you could do a set of DK for each leg then the FH for each leg.

I was dripping sweat at the end of this circuit and my legs were a little shaky. I felt great!

I hope someone finds this just as exciting as I do!