Wednesday, June 3, 2015


I promise I didn't lie...
Needless to say, I am having a hard time finding the time to blog. I thought I was back in business before, but its been...whoa...almost 2 months since I last published a post. I think about writing often. But thinking about it and doing it are not the same thing...obviously.

I have good intentions. In everything I do, I honestly can say I have some sort of orientation toward "the good". I don't want to get into philosophy here mainly because it's not my point, but, also because, I'm not sure I remember how to logically spell out a philosophical argument anymore. I have flashbacks to those hilarious freshman year classes. What I remember, however, is more about an infamous door as opposed to actual content. :)

If I am going to continue this blog, I have to let go of perfectionism. I don't have time to read and reread my posts over and over until they are "perfect". If I am going to keep this up, I  just have to write, quickly glance, hit that button, and walk away. If I can't do that, then this is over, BlogSpot. Ultimatum.

You're going to love these...
Recently, I've been into TED Talks. Our Apple TV added the "app" and, since then, I've been hooked. The talks do a great job of motivating me to feel motivated, whether I actually do anything is another subject. But it's nice to feel motivated. (You'll get my emphasis later.)

Here are my two favs so far:

Embrace the shake by Phil Hansen
"In art school, Phil Hansen developed an unruly tremor in his hand that kept him from creating the pointillist drawings he loved. Hansen was devastated, floating without a sense of purpose. Until a neurologist made a simple suggestion: embrace this limitation ... and transcend it."

Your elusive creative genius by Elizabeth Gilbert (author of Eat, Pray, Love)
"Elizabeth Gilbert muses on the impossible things we expect from artists and geniuses — and shares the radical idea that, instead of the rare person "being" a genius, all of us "have" a genius. It's a funny, personal and surprisingly moving talk."

Still struggling with body image...
I don't remember where I first read these tidbits of knowledge, but they have stuck with me for some time now.

"You need love the most when you feel you deserve it the least."


"You can’t hate your way into loving yourself."

When I am struggling with body image, I hate myself - I hate the way I look, I hate my style, my hair, my skin, the way I get the drift. I get caught up in this endless cycle of self-hate which inevitably translates into unlovable. "If I hate myself, then how can anyone else possibly love me?"

It helps me to remember that, when I am feeling this way, indulging in those self-destructive thoughts will not help me feel better. I have to stop them as soon as I realize what I am doing. (Easier said then done.) And get myself back on a positive track.

Its hard to act against your feelings. It seems unnatural. It seems fake. But, if you think about it, it's not.

We often let our feelings dictate what we do. But feelings are not facts, feelings are not truth, feelings are not the end-all-be-all. Sometimes we have to act a certain way despite our feelings.

Acting on feelings is precisely the downfall of our post-modern culture. Do whatever you feel like doing as long as it doesn't hurt anyone else. ...But what if hurts you? Are we free to hurt ourselves? I guess so. But why would we want to do that?

Ahhh, Relativism, it always comes back to you...

Feelings do not make a good or bad person. Just because I feel like I am unlovable doesn't mean I am unlovable. Its my actions that determine my fate.

Sunday, April 12, 2015

Post-Recovery Counseling

I first started seeing a mental health counselor/therapist my senior year of college.  I've had all kinds of experiences with all kinds of professionals.  My last counselor was through a crisis center.  About two years ago, when I started to wean off my anti-depressant medication, I found myself going less and less to counseling.  It’s been more than year now that I haven’t seen a mental health therapist, counselor, or psychiatrist.

It had been my intention to continue to go to counseling even after I was “recovered”.  I thought it would help me maintain my state of mental health and prevent any major setbacks by catching them early.  But I find myself here, one year later, having not been back.

Part of my dilemma is that I don’t feel like I can go back to place I did before.  Because it was a crisis center, I don’t feel like I deserve a spot there.  There are plenty of people who need the services more than me.  The center was always busy, and the staff was always overworked.  I would feel guilty if I went…like I was taking up space…space someone else needed more than me.

When I think about it, it’s not just that place that I don’t feel I can go.  I don’t feel like I can go anywhere.

I continue to struggle with depression and anxiety, yet I know I’m not as bad as I once was.  I’m not nearly as bad as some people who need counseling more than me.  I hate feeling like I don’t belong somewhere or I am wasting someone’s time.  Even if I am paying them for their services, I am keenly aware of when I am burdening someone.  Counselors and Therapists are human too – how can they handle listening to people’s problems day after day and not get worn out or develop a mental illness themselves?

...Just some of the thoughts that go through my head.

Even though I think I need regular counseling, I talk myself out of it.  I don’t feel like I deserve counseling.

The fact that I said “I don’t feel I deserve” should raise some red flags.  Part of the reason why I ended up in a mental hospital was because I had such a poor self-worth and didn't take care of myself...symptoms of my depression.

I need to remind myself that I am deserving, I am worthy, and I should not feel guilty for trying to take care of myself.  If anyone tries to make me feel bad for doing what I do, then that is their problem…not mine.

Easier said then done...

Sunday, March 1, 2015

It's Not Poison

Nursing makes you really hungry...really really hungry.  I think I have a bigger appetite now than when I was training for my marathon.

Being able to eat a lot can be fun...if you let it.  However, if you struggle with an eating disorder, being uncontrollably, perpetually hungry can be terrifying.

Since having a baby, some eating disorder thoughts have crept back into my life.  I was anticipating having minor setbacks because of post-pregnancy body image issues.  I also knew it would be difficult to control negative feelings with not being able to use my coping skill because of the responsibility of taking care of a baby.  For the most part, though, I've been ok.

The other night I was really down because I ate a huge dinner.  I was beating myself up and having a hard time moving on.  I was upset, tearful, discouraged.  I felt ugly, worthless, defeated...all too familiar feelings, making things worse.

Craig reminded me of an important fact.  He said, "You ate food, Mary.  It's not like you drank a gallon of poison.  You body will use it as energy and food for Dominic."

Food is not poison.  Eating food does not make me a bad person.  And repeat until it sinks in.