Saturday, 29 November 2014

Take It Like A (Hu)Man

I am about to tell you all about my grocery shopping adventure with my dietitian today. Which had a striking resemblance to one of my favorite musicals. Legally Blonde. Assuming you have all seen the movie, I won't go into the plot. However, I will explain how the title of this blog and the song it is based on tie in here. In the scene, Elle Woods is taking Emmett Forest to go shopping for clothes. For various reasons. And he does fight her in the beginning. Pointing out that you shouldn't judge a book by the cover and the thing is that her response is also correct : "I know. But I also know that tattered books get left on the shelf". In the same way, I know that the accomplishments I have made mentally do matter but being able to show them physically is the only way for others to see . So, we all do things that we don't always agree with. The song I'm referencing is called "Take It Like A Man" and the entire song has moments where my dietitian and Elle must have been best friends. Including the very beginning and the very end. In the very beginning she explains where they are and instructs for breathing to occur. And at the very end when Emmett no longer feels like himself, she says "that's the best part. The outside is new but now it reflects what's already in you". I was definitely made to breathe in the start of my grocery store trip and Elle's almost last statement is something that I feel deeply and that my dietitian constantly reminds me. Yes, things have changed but now my life is starting to reflect who I was already was and am by myself. 

We started simple and moved onto harder and harder things. But what shocked me most is that we laughed the whole time. It was actually a lot of fun. We got some healthy things and some more fun foods and even things that I haven't had since before I developed my eating disorder. It was really exciting and it felt so nice to have someone that I trust with me. The weird part was not looking at labels the whole time, but I made it and I still haven't looked at what we bought. I know I will check the facts before I eat it but for right now, I consider it an accomplishment. She even listened to what I really don't like to eat. Which I seriously appreciated. Because I am human. I was really nervous before this appointment but I can honestly say that it was a great experience to have. 

Thank you Bobbi. 

Stay Strong
xo Aria

Oh! I highly recommend listening to the song in the link below!

Friday, 28 November 2014

Thanksgiving With An Eating Disorder

I want to start this post with the disclaimer that all eating disorders and all sufferers are different. So, what I write may not be true for you or your loved ones. Nevertheless, thank you for reading and I hope you get something from it.

Thanksgiving is possibly the most stressful day of the year. It has food (with unknown nutritional info), family and stress. Not to mention that right now is when most relatives start talking about how they're going to have to diet after the holidays. People talk about being stuffed with food and attach guilt to food. But at the same time they judge how much we may or may not be eating and have no problem offering more. I know that I constantly feel judged on this holiday and that the idea of it makes my skin crawl. It's like all my worst fears coming together on this one day. And I can't escape it plus avoiding is a big no-no in recovery. So, I had to go to dinner. And I made it through but I can tell you that what I ate doesn't fit the typical Thanksgiving plate picture and I was still shaking with fear at the end. Thanksgiving with an eating disorder is terrifying and paralyzing and be a dangerous relapse point. Which is why as I am typing this, I am eating breakfast. You can't let one scary meal affect everything else you are working on.

Thanksgiving has more meaning to it than just food. You just have to find it.

Stay Strong
xo Aria

Friday, 21 November 2014

Two Years

Two years ago I put it down
Two years ago the last burn was made
Two years ago I decided to let them heal
Two years ago I wore long sleeves all the time
Two years ago I was fresh out of treatment
Two years ago I was in pain
Today I refuse to start again
Today my scrapes are not self-inflicted
Today my scars are faded
Today I can wear short sleeves
Today I have a life
Today I am still in pain, but
Today I know how to handle it.

November 22 2012. That was the last time that I self-harmed. I have wanted to. I have come close to it. I have had dreams about it. But I haven't acted. I have asked for help and made promises. Because of that, I am two years free of self-harming and my scars are almost invisible to the outside. I am so thankful to everyone that has stood by my side. Especially those who have sat with me while I have cried and made me make promises. Thank you. Without you, I wouldn't see how strong I truly am. 

Stay Strong
xo Aria

Tuesday, 18 November 2014

To-Do List for Now through December 1st

Ok, if you have been following me long enough then you know that every so often I post a to-do list. This normally happens when I'm feeling ridiculously overwhelmed and have way too much to do. And putting it in list form helps. The first list is just everything I have to do. The second is it all again but listed by priority. Sorry for the boring post!

  1. eat more regularly
  2. drink water or at least less caffeine
  3. english paper 1 :compare/contrast
  4. english paper 2: cause/effect
  5. english paper 3: characterization
  6. history quiz 2
  7. history article review
  8. history bibliography
  9. psych movie analysis
  10. psych experiment assignment
  11. psych advertising assignment
  12. sleep for more than 3 hours
  13. teaching class powerpoint
  14. teaching class assignments
  15. teaching class portfolio

  1. history quiz 2
  2. history article review
  3. psych movie analysis
  4. pysch advertising assignment
  5. teaching class powerpoint
  6. teaching class assignments
  7. english paper 1
  8. english paper 2
  9. history bibliography
  10. english paper 3
  11. teaching class portfolio
  12. eat more regularly
  13. drink more water
  14. sleep
  15. psych experiment assignment
I'll cross things off as I finish them. Hopefully starting tomorrow with the history stuff. 

Making lists can either be helpful or stressful. You pick.

Stay Strong
xo Aria

Friday, 14 November 2014

Life Is More Than a Competition

When I look back over my childhood, most of it is marked by competition. I was (am) a gymnast, I did theatre to be better than my cousin, I always had to get good grades. Competition was my everything. I loved it. I still do. I thrive under pressure and love competition and performing. But over the last year and a half, I've learned a different side of competition. It used to also be negative because I couldn't mess up. I had to be better and I had to win. Which don't get me wrong makes for a good athlete. But it also takes away the spark. And a fantastic student but you lose the love of learning. I went through years of hating reading and writing because it was never good enough. I was terrified to come back to gymnastics because I knew I couldn't compete as well. I had wasted all of my potential and had been reminded of it. I lost the competition. I had lost at life. The thing is though, if you don't view it as a win or lose situation the. It isn't so bad. Competing can bring out the best in you. It makes you work harder and helps you get up when you fall. I used to never want to try new skills unless I knew they lived up to standards because if the coach wasn't happy then I wasn't happy and it was a mess. It was a failure. A loss. But I've come to realize that losing can teach us a whole lot more than winning. It teaches us where to work from and how to improve. And most importantly it allows us to have fun. If nothing is more important than winning...then what do we do when we lose? Never stand up? Life needs to be more than a constant competition. Otherwise it isn't worth it. 

Let something other than winning be important.

Stay Strong 
xo Aria

Friday, 7 November 2014

Little Sisters Notice Everything

I have been very fortunate in the past year to gain more little sisters than I ever thought possible. Almost 20. Of course I am closer to some than others and those are typically the ones that have called me their big sister. It is probably one of the greatest honors that I have ever received. To know that I mean something to these girls that mean so much to me as well. One of the best parts of these relationships is the close friendships that come out of the sisterly ones. Three of my best friends are from the gym. And they have taught me so much more than I could ever imagine. Especially about what younger kids can pick up on. Today, I was texting one of them and said that I was "good" instead of what I normally say which is "fine". I didn't really think anything of it until she pointed it out and said she was glad that I was finally something better than just "fine". She also asked me what made today different and I wasn't totally sure what the answer was, until right now. It's better because I finally see that I am surrounded by amazing people. I have an amazing support system that if full of some people who don't even know that they are supporting more than just my gymnastics career. I have never felt more grateful for a group of girls. And I am so proud to call them my teammates and sisters.

Don't underestimate what people notice.

Stay Strong
xo Aria