Sunday, August 19, 2012

Doing The Next Right Thing

It was fun while it lasted! I rather enjoyed not being "hooked up" to my pump all day, just running feeds at night and being free of attachments.

About ten days into it, however, I completely lost my mind. I blame the caffeine for most of what happened, but part of this was also due to a semi-starvation state that we in the eating disorder recovery circles all know and understand.

Friday continued with the intermittent crying-for-no-reason-even-though-I'm-not-sad deal. Friday night I did not sleep. I sat awake writing frantic notes in my journal, trying to get all the words out. It was an exercise in futility, however, because the more I wrote the more the words kept piling up. I was sure that what I was writing was The Answer To All Life's Questions. It would get published, it would be critically acclaimed, and I would no longer be just another disabled body on SSI wandering aimlessly, continually looking for cause and purpose.

I got a text somewhere in the middle of the night (really?) and it was my friend, asking if I was going to bible study this morning. This morning? I looked at the clock. It was 7:30 AM. I texted back that I hadn't slept and I was tired ("maybe next week?"). The truth was I was WIRED, I was ON, but I knew this could not -- should not -- continue. So I took some of my thought stabilizers (haha) and a pain pill since my GI pain was through the roof. I edged off to sleep...

When I awoke I leafed through what I had written. Garbage. Nonsense. Random leaps of logic (if you can call it that), almost hallucinatory concepts that would never hold up in a debate. It's simply delusional, all this bantering. I then realized that I had essentially been chasing my figurative tale all night, therefore wasting it. Night is for sleeping, not charging down rabbit trails ON PURPOSE. I felt sheepish at my own conviction: I am not in my right mind

Saturday I made the only logical solution: go back to my "burst feed" schedule (four hours on a continuous rate and two hours off in my case. Pump still connected, but gives my sore gut a rest). Oh, but it was HARD. So hard, in fact, that I did not do it on Saturday. But I thought about it all day.

"I'll start tomorrow..."

Sunday. Did I hook up feeds that morning? Why yes I did! But then I took them off three hours into it.

What was my deal?

And then it hit me: this is no different than eating disorder behavior. That this is, in fact, eating disorder behavior. And I have a choice: do I or don't I? Will I choose to, once again, go chasing after the mirage that is the elusive "perfect..."? Everyone has their favorite fill-in-the-blank.

Or will I do the next right thing and start my continuous feeding schedule again. It is the only logical solution. Do I like it? No. Do I have to? No. Is it uncomfortable? Of course. Will I move past it and on to something greater even than odd behaviors and even the feeding pump and everything involved with it? You bet.

Will I move beyond myself and make a difference out there?

That, my friends, is the whole point.


  1. Danielle, I love you. I needed to hear this, about making the next right decision. And sitting with the discomfort. It actually made me cry, I've been struggling a bit with ED lately, and I guess I just needed to hear someone tell me that we could fight, no matter if it's ED or GI frustrations. So...thank you for making me cry (sounds crazy, but we are...right? I know I am, and life is more fun this way). <3

    1. Megan, as always, glad I could help :) I always LOVE hearing from you, even though I am really sorry you are having a rough go right now. But doing the next right thing, as it says in Jenni Schaffer's book "Life Without ED" (although it is really an old AA saying), is always a key component in this journey. Recovery is a process, not an event. And if you ever need to vent or even share exciting news with me, feel free to PM me or write on my timeline on FB. I also have a new phone # so if you PM me I can give it to you. Love, love <3

  2. ED is always just around the corner and I'm glad you recognized him and are choosing life.

    1. To you too Karin :). I am so proud of you!