Beaupedia

Human Under Construction

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Back To Earth

After nearly two weeks of being super positive and completely optimistic, I think I got my first heavy dose of reality tonight. My friend Ariel is leaving the program, against medical advice.

I had the wind knocked out of me when I heard. She started a day after me and I’ve grown to really see her as a friend and a steady source of support. It just sucks.

I wish I could say she’s the only one, but she’s not. Terry will also be leaving this week, against medical advice.

I’m struggling to separate my concern for them from my own recovery and not let it get in the way of my progress.

A little emotional meltdown on my couch and a phone call with Carmen have helped to get my mind back where it needs to be, but fuck, this sucks.

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Family, Community, and the Zen Room

Well, I’m sitting in what I have named the “Zen Room” with Jade and Nora. It’s where I start writing most of my posts before eventually finishing them at home. It operates as a second lounge and the art room during the day, but between 5 and 6 PM I lower all of the blinds, turn off the lights and turn on Dish Network’s Earth channel (a 24 hour live satellite image of the earth with calming music playing). It’s incredibly relaxing!

The view from my favorite “Zen Room” chair.

Now that I’m all Zenified, I guess I can talk about yesterday. I had my first family session, and I was a nervous wreck leading up to it. My family therapist Allison is awesome, but I was really not very optimistic about the conversation with my Mom. I ended up being entirely wrong, and we had an amazing conversation. My Mom was fully supportive and even talked about some of her own  struggles in the past. Hearing that really was a game changer for me in terms of my connection with her through this process. Huge success.

We had our Community meeting yesterday as well; thankfully we didn’t have anymore goodbyes, we’ve had enough of those for a bit. People were open and honest, expressed their concerns, their struggles, and their successes. I always benefit from the entire community coming together and being real with each other. It’s one of the meetings I look forward to.

Today is my therapist’s Birthday, so HAPPY BIRTHDAY to her if she’s reading this, as I suspect she probably is.

Oh, and one last thing. A success for me, I’ve been moved to Level 3! Basically I get to sit at a table without “adult supervision” and at lunch we get to serve ourselves from the buffet with guidance from our dieticians. We have more freedom and flexibility overall, and best of all, we get to participate in cooking classes. I am really excited about those.

Well, it’s dinner time, and I’ve been half-assed writing this post for two days, so it’s time to hit “Publish”.

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Help me raise the money needed for my treatment.

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The Lighter Side of Recovery

So, recovery at ERC is intense. Wonderful, but intense. That being said, we still have tons of fun. To that end, I’m going to start including some of the ridiculous, hilarious, inappropriate, often had-to-be-there quotes from throughout our days.

Also, blog note, I’ll be changing people’s names to protect their privacy. Lots of them will be named after people from TV shows or elsewhere in popular culture, and lots of them will come from baby name websites. I’m not that creative.

So, first, let me tell a little bit about my friend Carmen (she gets her fake name from Carmen Sandiego). Most of the entirely inappropriate things said at ERC come out of her or my mouth but we generally keep the place laughing. The quotes for the most part are just for us to remember; people following my blog who aren’t part of our group probably won’t find us funny at all, especially without context.

“Fuck you, little poops! Don’t tease me that way!”  – Carmen

Waiting for your body to adjust to you eating normally sucks. We’ll just leave it at that.

“That’s what you get for having an inflatable child!” – Me

Just…inside joke.

I think on my normal posts I’m just going to throw the quotes on to the end of the post, so expect that from here on out.

Today, well, today was intense. I personally had a good day despite an epic (isn’t that word so overused? It’s such a good word, though!) storm of shit flying around the center. We have a total of five people leaving our track (due to the number of patients, PHP is broken up into Track 1 and Track 2) within the week.

First, we’ve got Alice who has been in treatment for a while and is absolutely ready. She’s had some rough spots lately, but she’s an inspiration and it’s tough to see her go. Extremely happy for her and proud to see her “graduate”.

Secondly, we’ve got Marion who has all of the tools she needs, but should’ve had more time to practice using those tools. Her time in treatment was cut short because her insurance company are assholes. YAY ‘MURICA! Profits before health, and all that BS. It’s just infuriating.

Third, we’ve got Wayne who is leaving in a bit of a cloud. It’s…unfortunate. Thankfully he’ll be getting outpatient treatment back at home.

Another difficult goodbye was saying bye to Emma, who has relocated to residential treatment. It was unexpected by most of us, but I am so incredibly inspired by her honesty and bravery. She was honest with her treatment team, and courageous in stepping into that higher level of care. I know we’ll see her back in PHP soon, but damn do we miss her.

At the same time, we’ve got new people coming in, new stories to learn, and new friends to meet. It was a day of constant shifting and adjusting, but it was a day we all made it through.

I did have my first battle with behaviors last night, but was thankfully able to use the tools I’ve learned to prevent it from going into an all out binge and purge. All in all, using a wonderful thing called perspective, it ended up being a big victory for me.

Another success of the day was throwing all of my laxatives into the trash in my therapist’s office. Much thanks to her (Laura) for reminding me that doing it was indeed a success for my day.

Yay for pooping normally! (That one is for you, Carmen.)

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Help me raise the money needed for my treatment.

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Recovery – Week 2

Well, today marks two weeks since I arrived here at Eating Recovery Center. I’m having a pretty good Monday, though I am a little tired. Today is Pajama Day (decided by the patients, not some cheesy thing forced on us), there seems to be about a 10% participation rate. I didn’t come in Pajamas but I think I may participate in Punk Rock Day tomorrow, we’ll see!

The routine here is basically as follows:

  • Check-in, pee in a cup, get weighed, check vitals
  • Breakfast
  • Group (Recovery Skills, Boundaries, etc.)
  • Morning Snack
  • Group (Body Awareness, Yoga, Psychodrama, etc.)
  • Lunch
  • Group (Process Group, Community)
  • Snack
  • Transitions (First week group to help us settle in.)
  • Group (Grief & Loss, Nutrition, Body Celebration, Spirituality, etc)
  • Free Time (1 hour to do whatever we want)
  • Dinner

So that’s basically my day. There are 10-15 minute breaks between each thing, but it’s a pretty busy day. Weekends are a little different, but same idea.

ERC Room

Today, Monday, started out great, but by the end of the day it kind of fell apart. We have one person leaving due to insurance issues, another leaving to go to inpatient, another leaving tomorrow because she’s ready (Yay!), and yet another leaving Wednesday who is not ready.

Having insurance/money come between someone and treatment for a serious illness infuriates me. To pretend that this country in any way has it’s priorities straight is such a joke.

Overall I am still feeling optimistic and positive about being at ERC, it was just an emotionally challenging second half of the day.

ERC Wall Quote

A quote on the wall of ERC.

 

Well, it’s bedtime. Here comes Tuesday.

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Help me raise the money needed for my treatment.

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By

Recovery – My Eating Disorder

Well, here goes. I’ve been on this stage of this journey for one week, as of today. My eating disorder was also mostly private, until today.

The titles aren’t important, but for the sake of understanding and others maybe working through the same things, I am dealing with bulimia and binge eating.

I have been bulimic since high school, though the behaviors have varied greatly in frequency over the last 10 years. Sometimes they were mostly nonexistent for months, and sometimes I had behaviors every day. Years ago, through working with a therapist, I was able to curb my purging, but the binging never stopped. As a result my weight has increased, but more importantly my health has degraded.

I may get into the specifics of the journey that led me to where I am today at a later date, but for now,  I want to document where I’ve been and what I’ve been experiencing.

I am in a Partial Hospitalization Program at Eating Recovery Center here in Denver. I feel incredibly lucky to live so close to this place, especially once I found out that most of the patients are from all over the country. I went through the intake process on Monday, August 27th and have completed my first full week as of this writing.

Eating Recovery Center

Already I am noticing major changes in my relationship with food and my interactions with the world around me. Prior to entering treatment I had become incredibly isolated, barely leaving my apartment. I was avoiding work due to anxiety resulting from my body issues and had simply lost control.

I am grateful for my job at Comcast and the benefits offered that allow me to be away from work and working on my recovery. I am definitely fortunate.

Well, I suppose that’s enough for today, it’s about half an hour past my bedtime and I should head to bed. Program starts at 8AM, meaning I wake up at 7AM, which is usually the time I go to bed, following my night shift at work. It’s been an interesting transition.

My Favorite Room - ERC

My favorite room at ERC.

One final thing, just to throw it out there: I am thankfully covered by insurance, but it doesn’t cover everything and while the deposit was broken into multiple payments, it’s still a challenge. I’ve setup a fundraising page in hopes of raising some money so I can focus on my recovery and not on my bank account.

Thanks for anything you can do, and thanks for reading. I hope to continue blogging multiple times per week as I go through this journey, so, until next time.