Monday, August 24, 2015

August Updates & Fun Visitors

Hi friends!
I'm sorry it's been awhile! There has been a lot going on in my life over the last couple of weeks! If you follow me on Instagram you have an idea... So let's just jump right in!
I have been going through a 'lapse for weeks now and I am no longer weight restored, unfortunately. This has only consisted of restricting, but it has been getting worse and worse, so I'm trying to get it under control before it turns into a complete relapse. I don't want to ever hand my life over to anorexia again! On the bright side, I have reached out for help very quickly and here's where I am with things:

  • I already have a therapist here, so I will be seeing her weekly now and I have signed a release for her to speak with the rest of the "team."
  • I saw my doctor last week. She had been out for over a month! She has ordered blood work. She is also getting me in to see a specialist for my jaw. I am suffering from a slipped disc on the right side of my jaw as well as TMJ. It is terribly painful at all times and of course it interferes with my desire to eat, which is the last thing I need! It came on completely randomly, but according to the dentist, it's not so random. I survived some severe assaults years ago with major trauma to my face. And the TMJ started a few months after I had some major dental work done, so the dentist said that's basically the perfect storm for something like this. Lucky me.
  • I found an amazing dietitian whom I began seeing last week. She's seriously wonderful! I feel very blessed to have found her on my first try, as I'm quite choosy about my providers. We will meet weekly for now as well. She has me using an app called Recovery Record (screenshot below). It's brilliant! The app is linked with her and customized to the plan her and I agreed upon for me. It reminds me of my meals and snacks and I enter them after I eat. I also input my feelings at the time, urges to restrict and how strong they are, as well as a brief journal entry. It may sound daunting but it's actually not very time consuming and it helps me to really be present in what's going on for me at the time. I highly recommend this! And she is able to check in on me whenever she likes. We can also message each other through the app. Maybe some time I'll do an entire post on it!
  • Recovery Record App
  • I also had an intake interview/appointment for an eating disorders group that meets weekly for 3 hours and it's 12 weeks long. I have not been accepted into the group yet. The leader would prefer me to be weight restored first, and actually suggested that I enter outpatient treatment and do the group next time around but I don't think I need that level of treatment right now. So she's in the process of consulting with the rest of my providers and will get back to me at the end of the week after my blood work comes back to let me know if I'm in. I'm not feeling too strongly either way at this point. Right now I'm just happy to have found a great dietitian!
  • The last piece I feel like I must find as soon as possible is a psychiatrist! I am on antidepressants prescribed by my primary care physician but we both agree that a psychiatrist needs to be following me as well. I have never had so much trouble finding help as I have here in California! NO ONE calls back! It's crazy! I've been calling and calling and emailing to the point of near harassment and I just can't get anyone to contact me! It doesn't make sense! I've been working on this for nearly three months! So that's the treatment update. A lot, right?
As for the fun stuff, I just had the most fun weekend I've had in a very long time! The girl I used to nanny, S, was in town to visit with her mom this weekend! I haven't seen her in about six months. She just turned 5 years old. On Saturday the three of us had a girls' day in the city and it was a blast! We had a "teatime" at this cute little tea place, went shopping, got mani/pedis and went out to dinner. It was just a delightful day! S and I are very close. I was her nanny for 2.5 years, so we really bonded and we have missed each other terribly!

Also, my parents were in wine country for a few days on a mini vacation with friends, so last night my fiancé and I drove up and had dinner with them. Below is a photo of me and my beautiful Mama!
I hope everyone's week is off to a wonderful start! 
What was the highlight of your weekend? 


Thursday, August 13, 2015

Thumbs Up Thursday!

I know this post title is so silly but I want to make sure I dedicate a day of the week to a strictly positive post! Today I have a few fun things to share!

First of all, the other day I shared a couple of habits that I want to work on breaking. One of those is avoiding liquid calories and/or choosing the low-calorie version of a beverage. Since I'm not a soda drinker this means adding some fruit juices and full calorie Gatorade into my life. It's only been a week, but it's going well so far! Here are a couple of the drinks I've chosen:

*and I do not adjust my food intake if I drink calories. I don't think that's what healthy, non-eating-disordered people do 

I also wanted to share a link that really hit home for me this week:

Better With Sprinkles A PSA About Eating Disorder Recovery This post really resonated with me! It's basically why I started this blog! I don't want
 to be in that mindset of "recovery" where I'm still holding on to my eating disorder. Anyway, I'm not going to summarize it, go read it! It's challenging, but REAL! 

Lastly, FASHION AND SHOPPING!!! I fell in love with this sweater the moment I saw it on the Nordstrom website a couple months ago! Unfortunately they were already almost gone, so I could only buy one color. But good news, friends, this sweater was so popular that they brought it back!! I just ordered more! It's called the Free People Shadow Hacci Top. I love their sweaters but I think this is my number one favorite because it's cozy, it hides bloating (come on!) and it's super stylish with the open back. You just can't go wrong with it!
Nordstrom website 

I also ordered the Converse Chuck Taylor II. I am a huge fan of Chucks and I've heard nothing but good things about these! I can't wait for them to arrive!

Have you made any fun purchases recently? If so, what? 
Any links you loved on the Web this week? 


Tuesday, August 11, 2015

Dark Times & Feelings

Well, I don't really know how to begin this post. If you follow my Instagram you know that I was in Texas for several days visiting my oldest brother, sister-in-love and niece and that for the weekend our estranged biological father visited. He left our mom and us when we were 4 and 2 and they divorced. Since then my mom (she remarried to my dad who raised us and I have two more brothers) always tried to keep us in touch with him and make sure we visited him, etc. And although he didn't deserve this in my opinion, she never spoke poorly of him or allowed us to. Anyway, as we grew older we realized that without Mom dialing his number for us, we probably wouldn't talk at all since he rarely initiated contact. Fast forward to now and I have not seen this man in nearly a decade, since my grandfather died. To make it easier I'm going to refer to him as BD. So BD arrives and he's non-stop talking about all these "special memories" of the days when we were a little happy family, blah, blah, blah... and I was becoming increasingly angry! Why? Because he left us! I mean he abandoned his family - his beautiful wife and children - before us kids were even old enough to start coding long-term memories, so NO, BD, I don't remember any of these stupid stories!!! And then I was angry that he couldn't sense my anger because he doesn't even know me! There was one point on Sunday night when he brought up something particularly triggering and traumatic for me. I don't want to go into detail about all of it, mostly because it would require that I type out so much of my life story and everything. 

Anyway, it's important to note this first:
During the early days of my eating disorder back in my teen years, purging was something I did. It was never a regular part of my eating disorder and I was never bulimic but I did, at times, purge. It always happened at my parents house, which is for a whole different post. I have not purged in at least ten years. I have not even considered purging. For me, since I began my recovery journey purging is one behavior that stopped completely and it's a line that I never thought I would ever think of crossing again.

Back to the weekend, on Sunday night, BD lied to my face about something that was extremely triggering and traumatic that I've been holding since my childhood. I got so worked up that I went to the bathroom for a few minutes alone and I actually thought about purging. This was a terrifying moment for me! I didn't do it. I didn't even try. But the fact that I seriously considered it, even though it was days ago still scares me. That was a dark moment.

I'm back home in California now. And I'm so blessed to have my wonderful fiancé who is so supportive and is here for me as I try to navigate my way through the aftermath of feelings after the weekend. I also talked with my therapist yesterday. It was really good! She told me that she's actually proud of me. She explained how all of the anger I feel is normal and that I'm just not used to these intense feelings because most of my life I have starved them away.I would be lying if I said I am not tempted to starve them away. The intense anger that I feel towards this man is quite uncomfortable. However, I believe the only way to heal is to feel it rather than get around it. So here I am. Feeling. It's raw. It's painful and it sucks. And ana wants me to starve it all away but I refuse to let her win, so I'll keep fighting.
Sorry for the dark post. But I promised authenticity.

To end on a positive note, being with this little sweet pea for 5 days was food to my soul! My niece is perfection! I wish I could bottle up her laugh, her smell and all of her babbles!

How have you dealt with some of your darker times during recovery?


Friday, August 7, 2015

Texas Heat & Breaking Old Habits

I'm in Texas visiting my brother and his cute little family right now (more details on Instagram) and I decided to take a short walk to the pharmacy at 1pm in the scorching heat! Oh my goodness, it's hot! I actually like it but since I'm not used to it I decided to pick up a Gatorade for the walk back. As I was leaving the store I realized that I had picked up the "low calorie" kind. I didn't even think about it, it's just habit. Of course that got me thinking again about how these seemingly tiny little habits all add up to NOT RECOVERY!
Outfit details:: dress - Target // sneakers - Chucks via Zappos // sunnies - Dior

So here's my list (so far) of habits I have that simply come from the eating disorder and not me. 
They need to be broken:

1. Not drinking calories or choosing low calorie options.
New habit - incorporate some fruit juices or full calorie Gatorade as I don't enjoy soda
2. Refusing dressings or condiments.
New habit - try some and see what I like

I am sure there are more but this is what I can think of right now. And I think it's important to replace old habits with new ones rather than just trying to stop an old habit. Just my opinion.
Other than that I'm trying to just survive this day without restricting. Today is hard. My biological father left when I was very young. I don't know him. My brother and I have recently been in touch with him. We are nervous about seeing him and he is OVER-THE-MOON with excitement about seeing us. So I'm just trying to manage my anxiety... Tomorrow morning is coming and there's nothing I can do to stop it.

Do you have any habits that interfere with your recovery? Or your personal growth in general?
If so, what? How do you plan to change them?


Welcome to Ice Cream & Authenticity!

WELCOME to Ice Cream and Authenticity!!! My name is Dionne. I started this blog after joining the beautiful Instagram community of friends in #REALrecovery Personally, I have been  battling anorexia for over ten years. It has been a long, grueling battle. Some years have been full of life and love and success and some have been darker with relapse and illness. I am in a new chapter of my life as I have recently gotten engaged to the love of my life and subsequently relocated to California (and away from family and friends) for my fiancé's job. I am so happy to be here with him, but it's also a major life transition and it's been quite bumpy recovery-wise. I'm also battling chronic illness, which I'll write about another time. Anyway, with all of these changes I am facing my recovery in new and different ways and I am challenging myself more than ever. I started this blog to keep myself accountable, as I believe that so much of recovery is AUTHENTICITY. You have to be true to yourself and others in order to truly be free of an eating disorder, and I plan to do that! I want to be accountable to me, even if no one at all reads this. And if anyone does read it, perhaps something you read will encourage you! So welcome!
I was going to keep this post very light and short and end there, but I think I will further explain the name. I have been considering starting a blog for weeks now and I knew it would have ice cream in the name. It might sound silly, but ice cream has been significant in the turning point I've reached in recovery recently. I don't like milk. I haven't liked it for as long as I can remember. I've also told people since I was very young that I don't like ice cream. Now, as I recently verified, I truly do not enjoy vanilla ice cream, as it reminds me of the taste of milk, but hand me some chocolate, and it's ON!!! Even since I've been in recovery for years, I have continued to tell people that I don't like ice cream. Why? Because it's always been a fear food, and I hate to admit this. It's shameful, really, but throughout over ten years of recovery and being weight restored for the majority of those years, I have held on to many of those fears and not allowed myself to indulge in them, How is that recovery?? Guess what? In truth, it's NOT. After starting my recovery Instagram account (@aimer_dionne) and reading an amazing blog, I have been challenging myself and my ways of thinking about recovery. It's time for REAL RECOVERY! I tried ice cream a few weeks ago and loved it! Since then I've had several pint parties and as I've posted on Insta, nothing crazy happened to my body- I didn't gain ten pounds overnight or turn into a blimp - sure, I had some bloating, but that's totally normal. So here I am.... Real recovery. No fear foods. No diets. No exercise regimens. No extremes (except I do have some weight restoration to do, so for now no exercise at all and I'm doing Minnie Maud guidelines). It might not be perfect because I'm not perfect. What I am and what I will be is AUTHENTIC. This is me and my authentic, honest, real recovery. 

Goodbye disorder. Goodbye anorexia.

Are there parts of your disorder that you've tried to hold on to in your recovery (i.e. exercise, food stuff, etc)? 
Are you still holding on to them? 
If not, how did you let go?