the worst that can happen.

This morning I had a cup of milk on my cereal. I know it was a cup, because I measured it. This is not something I usually do. This morning I had to force myself to measure out a cup of milk, as per my dietitian’s request, because this is not something I usually do and whilst I measure my cereal I do not measure my milk. I have always pronounced this to health professionals triumphantly – I do not measure my milk, therefore I am not obsessive and I can be flexible and I am smashing this whole recovery thing.

The reason my dietitian requested I started measuring out the milk that goes onto my cereal in the mornings is because I use not measuring it as an excuse to have less than I probably should. In attempting to appear as if I wasn’t being disordered, I was. And my dietitian pulled me up on it.

So this morning I measured out my cup of milk, poured half of it over my cereal and fruit and began to eat. As the milk started to soak into the cereal, I tipped more in. I did this until eventually the cup of milk was gone and the cereal had all been eaten. Afterwards I felt “fuller” than usual (impossible, my friends). I was fidgeting. I actually thought I was going to cry about the extra milk. And I really just wanted to go for a run, to be honest (I didn’t, just FYI because Running and Rebekah are incompatible).

So I sat there with the feelings for a while, but they didn’t go away and I still felt yuck and guilty and full and all those fun things that come along with recovery. But then I asked myself this:

What’s the worst that can happen?

I drank a cup of milk instead of half a cup and what’s the worst that can happen? My head says “you might gain weight”. Rationality leads me to see that an extra half of cup of milk a day is not going to change ones weight. And so what if it does? My head says “you will feel guilty.” Yes, I will feel guilty. So what? “You won’t be able to tolerate the disgust”. But I am. I do. I did. Somehow we get through. “You will have to exercise more”. Well no, I won’t have to. I can choose to. I can choose not to. That is a choice that is mine.

The worst that can happen is that you will feel bad and you will feel guilty and you will find these things hard to tolerate, but you’ll find a way to feel those things anyway. And then they’ll pass. And then they’ll come back, because you’ll do something else that’s in line with recovery that your head doesn’t like. And you’ll keep on doing those things and at some point you’ll be proud you’re doing them and you’ll be pleased you did and you’ll be grateful because if you hadn’t done them, you wouldn’t have recovered.

What’s the worst that can happen?

The worst that can happen is that you’ll do all these hard things and you’ll challenge yourself and it will feel intolerable but eventually you stick it out and stick it out and stick it out for what feels like eternity… And you reach a place of recovery. The worst thing that can happen, in the eyes of your eating disorder, is that you will recover. Not today, and not tomorrow – but eventually it WILL happen, the more you continue to challenge yourself and fight back.

What’s the worst that can happen?

Ask yourself that. And then do the scary thing anyway, because the worst thing that can happen is actually the very best thing.

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3 thoughts on “the worst that can happen.

  1. Love this! Well done! We seem to be at the same point of challenges those thoughts about ‘the worst that can happen’. Also this -> “In attempting to appear as if I wasn’t being disordered, I was”I do this too!

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