Wants and needs are scary things . . . they leave me feeling, well, wanting and needy. When I was trying to come up with ANY reason to commit to recovery, I wrote a list of things I wanted to be able to do (or have) that I couldn’t do (or have) while dating ED. While the list has changed (carbs, dairy and junk food are now a part of my meal plan, so therefore no longer wants . . . in fact, they’re DON’T wants a lot of the time . . . ) a lot of them are still worth mentioning.
1. A degree. In spite of spending 6 years in school, I only have a certificate and a diploma, no degree. Because my diploma is in Musical Theatre, it’s really good for nothing else. I always valued earning a degree, but a) it wasn’t necessary for a career in performance and b) there were no degree programs in musical theatre in Canada when I was in school. Having a degree leads directly into . . .
2. A career that makes a difference. I always valued that. The reason I got into theatre was because, as a child, theatre was a manner of escape for me, and I wanted to be a part of showing kids like me what a happy ending could look like. I still want to do something along those lines, just not in the theatre. I think mostly I want to be an activist, and not only show people that a better life is possible, but to help create a better future.
3. I want to own property. I thought I loved the gypsy life that goes along with a life in musical theatre, but I’m learning how much I value stability. I want to have my own place to come home to every night, where I feel safe and have some security. And it would be nice not to have to pay rent forever . . . I’ll take a mortgage over rent any day.
4. A dog. I really want a dog. I loved having a dog, and they always make me feel better, even just while walking down the street. I want a rescue dog . . . we can make each others’ lives better. In order to have a dog, I’m gonna need at least a career and a house, because I’ll need money and somewhere I haven’t had to pay a security deposit . . .
5. I want to travel. Again, a career and money would come in handy for this one. Mostly, I need to be relaxed enough in my food etc. rituals to actually go places and eat in restaurants, in front of people, etc . . . It’ll happen someday.
6. I want better relationships all around. Because I’ve had to hide for so long, and lived in fear of abandonment, I’ve always kept people at arm’s length, and my inability to express my true emotions makes all my interactions pretty surface level. Once I don’t have my eating disorder symptoms to protect me and keep me numbed out, I hope all my relationships will improve.
7. I feel like the last one should be fun and frivolous. I want to win the lottery! If I won the lottery, I could pay my parents back for treatment, have unlimited sessions with the best therapist ever (mine), do yoga as often as I’m medically cleared to, buy property, pay tuition, travel, afford a dog, start an eating disorder charity, and afford to buy a new wardrobe every time I go up a size in this fucked up process . . . and I would buy a Kelly bag. I think I’ve mentioned before how much I need a Kelly bag.
Hey. You. What do YOU want?