There it is. I saw this on Pinterest (Obsessed. Did you know it’s the fastest growing social media site ever? I learned that from an infographic I saw on Pinterest) and it really resonated with me.
Recovery is one of those things that everyone thinks they’ll be able to just jump into as soon as they make up their mind to. Obviously since we’re completely in control of our eating disorder we’ll be totally in control of our recovery, right? I think fighting for recovery on my own, outside of treatment, was the first time I’d realized just how in control of my eating disorder I wasn’t. I thought I’d be fixed overnight, but almost a year later I’m still far from “recovered”. I mean, I’m doing well with the food stuff, but I still have a long way to go before I feel “normal”.
Y’all know I love me a good metaphor, and I’ve got a good one for this “steps to recovery” thing. And guess what: it’s dance-related.
When I started back into ballet in January, I figured I’d just pick back up where I left off. I mean, I’d only been off dance for less than a year. No matter that I’d starved off all my muscle and regained a ton of weight that, well, wasn’t muscle: I was gonna be a ballerina in no time!
No such luck. Nothing was working like it was “supposed” to. I was driving myself insane(r) trying to focus on everything I needed to fix. I couldn’t fix everything at once. So, I decided to do it in chunks. First chunk I fixed: my arms. I figure it doesn’t matter what your feet are doing, so long as your upper body looks supported and correctly positioned. My arms improved. Other things improved along with it without my noticing. I’ve worked my way through my body, focusing on a new part every few weeks: core, turnout, spotting, feet, leg stretch. I’m never going to be a prima ballerina, but I’ve improved a lot.
I feel like the same thing is true for recovery. You’re probably not going to be able to eat a cake right away (or even a year later, in some cases . . . so I’ve heard . . . ) but something is better than nothing. I started off by adding things to what I was already eating. I added an apple to my bowl of (in the interest of not sharing any unhealthy tips and tricks, I’ll just call it “air”) , and adding bit by bit, slowly that bowl evolved into my über healthy current breakfast. The current breakfast contains no (air), but I almost didn’t notice it changing. Almost. It was fucking terrifying every step, but the little steps were WAY more manageable than going from (air) to my souped-up steel cut oatmeal.
Patience is hard. But so is recovery. Baby steps make it less hard – slightly. The important thing is to keep taking the steps. When you stop stepping forward, you start stepping backwards, and I promise: that’s not where you really want to be.
(P.S. The pint-sized prima ballerina? Baby Liza. She’s never looked more like her Mama)