Returning Home

Hello world.

Excuse me if I am a little rusty at this writing thing today. It has been a while since I found my fingers on my laptop keys typing away as my heart spills the truth it needs to have heard. Gosh I have missed it…

It has not been that I have had nothing to say. That is far from my reality. A tremendous amount of life has unfolded in the months since my last blog post. I have seen death and life. Joy and sorrow. Breakdowns and breakthroughs. I have felt the deepest of pains and the highest of hopes. I have been wounded. I have been healed. There were steps forward and there were steps back. I have grieved and I have celebrated. I have watched beginnings unfold and endings be revealed. These past four months have felt more like four years. How so much life can be crammed in to such a short amount of time is mind boggling to me. It has been just a tad overwhelming. And by tad I mean challenging-stressful-worried I may not make it-suffocating under the weight of the heaviness of hurt-drawn back to darkness-isolating overwhelming. I always promise to keep it authentic with all of you. That is my truth. There were plenty of days I was so unsure my heart and mind could take anymore and wanted to give up on life completely.

But nevertheless, here I am. Trying to rise. Trying to survive. Trying to be free. The best place I know how to regain what the past months have tried to steal is right here writing this blog. This is home to me. This is my something familiar to keep me grounded. This is my sanity.

So then why the absence? Life clearly gave me plenty about which to write. But something important to know about me is I don’t speak or write just because there is something to say. Everything I do is with purpose, with intent, and with passion. Writing is an emotional outlet for me. It is my form of healing. It is my means of being transparent and that transparency is what saves me.

Transparency for me is not a luxury. It is a necessity. I need to be open with my journey and struggles. Transparency is my spirit’s greatest muscle. It needs to be exercised to strengthen. For many, it takes courage to be transparent. For me, it takes transparency to have courage; courage to fight my mind, to say no the inner voices trying to tear me down, to believe in a better tomorrow, to let go of the anorexia that I cling to so fiercely. I need the vulnerability to be strong so the disorder can weaken.

Transparency is the greatest threat to the anorexia. By being vulnerable with others about the disorder, I am exposing it for the truth that it is. I am shining the light into the darkness where it is hiding. I am revealing all the parts it wants to keep unknown so it can thrive. The more I speak, the less it does. The more I share, the less power it has. It shrinks and I grow. The grip loosens and the thoughts lessen.

Transparency is my survival.  

But it too has its own threat. My ability to be transparent hinges on one thing; how safe I feel in my life. And that safety can be compromised in many ways; the unexpected happening, being placed in situations I have no control over, death of people and dreams, betrayal, being manipulated or lied to, disappointments, neglect, overwhelming emotions, loss of self, seeing what really is behind the rose-colored glasses. The more unsafe I feel, the less transparent I am. It diminishes my trust level which is key in the ability to be vulnerable with people.

My safety has been stripped away the past few months. Right there lies the answer to the question of my absence. There has been a lot to share but the transparency to speak it was compromised. And if we want to connect the dots even more, if transparency was eliminated then that means something else in my life had more space to take up; the anorexia. Its nemesis was gone, and it knew it. It took advantage of the quiet and the isolation and the lack of safety. It saw the opening, scoped out its surroundings, and when it saw me notice it but then look away, it walked right back in. It made itself at home. It is still dwelling there today.

Having it there is a comfort. Its presence is familiar. The feelings are known. There is more control. It gives me everything I look for to feel safe even though it is killing me at the same time. It is a false security. I logically know that. But that does not stop my mind from running to it. That does not stop me from retreating to it for a breather. That does not stop me from relying on it for relief. Call it insanity but it is my stability standing on very shaky ground. It always surprises me how easily I can adjust back into that lifestyle as if I never was gone. Everything is right where I left it. It is all waiting to be picked up again, to be thought again, to be felt again, to be seen again. The script is always the same for me to read from. The character is just a little older.

I wish I could sit here and say that I hate it, that I want to let go, that I want to change where I am. If that was the case then this journey would have been over a long time ago. The difficulty of walking out of this storm is EXTREMELY underrated. It is not a simple yes to life one time and then it is done. It is having to repeat that yes again and again and again with a mind that is trained to see what is false and conditioned to self destruct. I don’t always believe in what recovery represents. I don’t always trust the promises of freedom it tells me will one day be fulfilled. I don’t always feel I have the strength to endure the road ahead with no guarantee of what awaits me at the end. And being completely transparent, why I continuously find myself back in this place of coexisting with the disorder is because I don’t trust the body recovery will give me. There is a part of me that is still fighting to maintain control over how it looks. It is what keeps me attached to the anorexia.  It is what keeps me craving it. It is what keeps me following the pull. As long as this body is my number one obsession, the anorexia is not going anywhere.

But I know I cannot let it stay. The illusion of what I think it can give is never going to turn into something real. It has not the past eighteen years I have walked on this road, and I know it will not start now. So, I guess that is why I am writing this blog today. Even though I have a part of me debating if it will even be posted, I have a very slightly larger part of me begging to fly again that is not able to write this fast enough hoping the transparency will weaken it a bit. The war of two worlds is always ongoing. Every second I am faced with choosing which side will win. Every second I don’t always make the right decision. But every second always lends the way to another one for me to give it another try.

If you are reading this then you know who I wanted to see claim victory today. You will know I decided to pick myself back up. You will know I am determined to be free. You will know I am ready to be okay again. Maybe not today and maybe not tomorrow. But someday.

Someday, I will be truly okay.

J. L.