since my last post! I can’t believe it’s been that long but ’twas a crazy series of events. I took my last final, finished up swim practices for the semester, went home for Christmas, went to Puerto Rico for our swim team training trip, flew back to school and continued training (despite the freezing temperatures and snow in Ithaca) and have had two swim meets. Without classes, the training hours are long everyday and training is more intense – I’ve felt stuck in the perpetual cycle of swim, eat, sleep, repeat every day.
The reason I’d been staying away from my blog – aside from being busy – is that I’ve been trying to separate completely from my eating disorder. Ever since I had to take time off from swim for my concussion, I have been intuitively eating – which appears to really have made a difference in my recovery. It definitely was not easy in the beginning and I’m sure there were a few days that I did not eat as much as a should have; however, now I can honestly say I have re-learned my hunger cues and that eating what my body wants is much more important than what I think my body should need. Life is so much simpler now – for the most part – and obsessive thoughts have declined completely. Throughout the holidays, during training trip and even now I feel more confident in myself and for the first time (probably EVER) I can say that I like myself.
All of this probably sounds really fast or too good to be true, but that’s how it happened. It hasn’t been all “rainbows and butterflies” but now I realize that blaming myself for a negative situation gets me nowhere! It’s really about reacting in a positive way to negative circumstances.
Since so much happened over the break, I thought I’d just list everything as it comes back to me and not in any particular order:
- I got my grades back, and was ecstatic to see that I’d made Dean’s List again!
- I have always loved baking, and returned to that love when I went home. I made toffee oatmeal cookies, double chocolate biscotti (my fave with a fresh cup of coffee) and Christmas cookies with homemade icing.
- I ate cookies. And chocolate. Without feeling “out of control” and stopping when I was satisfied. Not in secret. And not feeling guilty.
- Instead of swimming every day while I was home, I went to the gym and ran on the treadmill a couple times but also took about 3 days completely off (over ten days).
- I was supposed to fly out for PR on December 27th, but ended up getting to spend two extra days with my family because of the blizzard that hit the tri-state area! 🙂
- Even though I could have gone to swim practice or the gym, I decided to go sledding in said blizzard instead and had a blast
- My older sister got engaged to her boyfriend of six years! In spite of our differences, I could not be happier for her. Maybe this will let us put our past behind us? My younger sister and I will be co-maids of honor in her wedding, which is extremely exciting. They just set a date of October 8th of this year and there is a ton of planning to do between then and now!
- I got a “nook” for Christmas – the Barnes and Noble e-Reader. I didn’t ask for it but WOW I absolutely loveeee it!! I have always been an avid reader but didn’t read much during my disorder because I couldn’t focus – happy to say that is something I have overcome and I’ve been reading like crazy 🙂
- I swam in my first meet of the season against Yale and was happy with my mindset about the races.
- I found out that I didn’t get the job in Boston. However, it is completely true that as one door closes, another door opens. Recently I’ve been searching for potential opportunities and have found a lot of jobs that I think will be a better fit for me during my gap year(s).
- I’ve applied to about ten jobs in the last week, which has required lots of resume updating and switching around, lots of cover letter writing and lots of online applications…in addition to communication with the people writing my recommendations. AKA a crap load of work. And I’m not done yet! I’m trying to get a bunch done before classes start next week but I am so excited about the places I could potentially be next year!
- I learned to laugh at myself again.
- Watched my favorite team the New York Jets and my future husband Mark Sanchez beat up on the New England Patriots (FINALLYYY)
- Realized I kind of like being a rebel when our team went to a sketchy Puerto Rican club and I enjoyed myself to no end (alcohol did its part here).
- Realized it’s okay to eat sugary cereal and fell in love all over again. Life is so much better when you eat things that taste good.
- Also fell in love with cheese…again.
- Became exponentially more comfortable in my own skin and more confident in my abilities. I laugh more now, can concentrate on tasks and don’t doubt my instincts.
- Had an awesome time while doing all of this!
Honestly, I’ve been really enjoying myself on a daily basis. Yes, there were things that didn’t go so well. I didn’t get the job I was hoping to get. But I realized that everything happens for a reason! This can even apply to my eating disorder. Before my disorder, I was anxious all the time, worried about all the “little things,” did not like myself and never enjoyed myself. I thought to enjoy life I had to achieve tangible goals in swimming and in school. I had no idea that life is not about these things – life is about so much more. It’s about taking a day off from working out to go sledding with family and friends. It’s about taking joy in work and play. It’s about really feeling happiness instead of accomplishment, and following your heart and intuition. It’s about kind words and laughing until you cry.
I hope everyone is experiencing these things in their lives and looking for the good. More posting ahead from me!