CURRENTLY SCHEDULING: Interested In Receiving Recovery Coaching 1×1? Or Tips on Blogging? Let’s Talk!

I’ve been a slacker on the blog this past month and some. Tis’ true.

I’d love to make 100 different excuses as to why (and will totally take this as an opp to shamelessly plug the fact that my partner and I are engaged as of a week ago!) but the truth is I have really just allowed myself to overextend commitments.

Whether it’s recovery meet n’ greet coffees or planning recovery speeches or my 9-5 job or traveling for my 9-5 (and recently for a recovery speech) I am at the point where I can no longer give a present (and meaningful) amount of time to any one email, Instagram direct message, or phone call.

Someone told me once that I needed to create boundaries in my advocacy work or I would get burned out and be of no help to anyone, least of all myself. I ignored this for another two years.

Of course I can, I told myself. I cherish ALL conversations and emails. (I do.)

But, it’s dawned on me since that that person had a point.

While I cherish all connection, I also cherish the privilege to show up and genuinely give my invested time, energy and presence.

I simply cannot do that in unstructured ways.

Over the last year, I have received daily emails that range in various needs: from assistance in finding local resources to treat eating disorders, to starting a personal recovery blog, to general recovery coaching, to parents asking about how to talk to their children.

Continue reading “CURRENTLY SCHEDULING: Interested In Receiving Recovery Coaching 1×1? Or Tips on Blogging? Let’s Talk!”

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Reminder: No One Is Staring At Your ‘Bikini Bod’ Because They’re Too Busy Judging Their Own

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Originally posted this on Instagram, but felt it calling me to post here.

Was out last night, wandering the Boulder streets for dinner.

It was Boulder Creek Fest so people were fluttering about – groups of women in their summer gear. 88 degrees at 7:30pm. Doesn’t get much better than that.

I thought about how it’s turning into that part of the year where heat dictates how little or much clothing we wear. And how difficult that can be to transition out of the eating disorder safety of winter.

A reminder on this social media-bikini-posting holiday weekend that when you’re scrolling your feeds feelin’ like shit:

Almost every single one of us – in different forms and fashions – filters, preps, angles, and frets over what we’re posting. Likely puts on make up before a pic is taken (as I was doing when I thought of this post). Likely exclaims “hell no, redo,” to their exasperated partner who’s just tryna take a pic.
Continue reading “Reminder: No One Is Staring At Your ‘Bikini Bod’ Because They’re Too Busy Judging Their Own”

My Eating Disorder Documentary Went Live This Morning!

 

This morning, a lil mini-documentary about my eating disorder, and recovery aired on Barcroft TV, and what a unique moment in life.

There’s always something to note (like LOLZ on all the “looking into the distance” shots or HEY check out some of the laughable YouTube comments), but I’ll keep it simple.

A reminder today that:

Eating disorders come in all shapes and sizes. My story is common because I am a white, small, cisgender female who grew up engulfed by “diet and beauty” culture, and the insecurity and expectation that it breeds. That is not to be ignored, but there are millions out there who do not have the same background. Men, women, ethnicities, nationalities, class. I am not the sole representation of what an eating disorder looks like, and will never pretend that I could be or am.

You will never be “sick enough.” You deserve help, no matter your circumstances, religion, shame, or weight.

I had a strong support system when I went to treatment. Most don’t (or they do) and it still means that sometimes they go back to rehab a few times before they get their shit straight. I am still working on what that means in my own life.

Recovery is ever-changing, ever-evolving. That’s why it’s flexible.

It is okay to live with an eating disorder. Recovery is accepting its presence in your life, not ignoring it as “fixed.”

Thank you to my best friend Kim Dyer for being in this, and Kristina Doelling for watching it from her apt in Brooklyn. Thank you to my parents Joanna Byers Hall for putting themselves out there, and being vulnerable to millions as parents of someone with an eating disorder. Thank you to The Renfrew Center for inclusion in the documentary, and taking time out of their lives to participate. Thank you to the camera crew and the producer for not making this salacious. Thank you Bradley’s parents for raising a beautiful child. His life has been the inspiration for so much of my recovery. Shout out to my partner for helping me get through that day, and waking up at 6am.

I am feeling many things, as one does when they see their sniffling face on film. Mostly, I am grateful for the life I have led – in all its ups and downs and side doors and mirrors.

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The Part About Changing Your Life That No One Talks About

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As we wrap up the first month of 2018,  the cliche remains: “Where did the time go?”

How are we so shocked when we look down at the screens of our phones and realize we’re 31 days into a new year.

Where were we the last 31 days? Did we go into a mindless Instagram vortex and disappear?

OR… do I just tell myself  that because right now, in this moment, I’m feeling that way.

ANYWAY. I detract.

I know it’s “new year, new you” and all that crap, and many of us are off starving ourselves or worshipping new gym memberships or trying to stick to the belief that are bodies “are fine as is” even when we want to act out… regardless where you’re at, there’s an aspect of these “life changes” that doesn’t get acknowledged or valued enough. And that’s the loss.

The loss of the life you were leading. I know we’re supposed to be all like “YAY recovery life. I don’t want that old life back.”

But, as Mark Manson says, you can’t change or grow without losing a part of yourself. And that loss, even when it happens for a good reason, it hurts. It shapes.

And that’s not even getting into losing something or someone for a bad reason.

It’s terrifying.

Out of the hundreds of emails I read each month seeking recovery or ‘what next’ advice, I’d say nearly 50% relate to loss in some way. Loss of an eating disorder. Loss of a relationship. Loss of family. Loss of career. Loss of friendships. Loss of identity. “Who the hell am I without X?”

I’ve been there. Sometimes, I’m still there.

Continue reading “The Part About Changing Your Life That No One Talks About”

This Is Why You Relapse

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Heavy-hearted, I write today.

Truth is, this headline is declarative. I have no idea why you relapse.

As I sit here in a coffee shop – mulling through this post – I got a call from a close friend.

“Have you talked to X lately?”

“No… He dropped off a couple months ago and stopped answering me, so I assume he’s relapsed.”

“Linds, it’s bad. Just feel you should know before you hear from anyone else. His liver and kidneys are failing. Was in ICU for 13 days. Respiratory failure. Got out and got back on the painkillers. Sister found him slumped over a coffee table. He’s going to die if he doesn’t get help… and I don’t know if you want to reach back out – but we’re trying anything.”

I stared at my phone.

Stomach sinks. Not because it’s unexpected – but because it’s so expected and yet, no matter how much you can prepare for anything – you never know when the day will just come.

My ex might very likely die, which is two of my exes that I am waiting for that call.

“He’s gone.”

I received it once already – when my best friend fell out of a tree.

And I know it’s only a matter of time these days, before I get it again.

Being a messy person creates a messy life. And I have always held a love for messy people.

Continue reading “This Is Why You Relapse”

“You Must Eat Intuitively … But, Actually, Eat At Exactly 8am, 12pm, 3pm, and 6pm”: The Truth About ‘Intuitive Eating’ In Recovery

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This post has taken me a long time to write.

(What’s new? Generally speaking, everything I write takes me till the next half moon … but I think I like starting posts off by saying something declarative to build anticipation … probably some public relations gimmick. I’m a fraud.)

ANYWAY, this post is hard because I don’t have a solution.

Usually, if I’m going to blabber on about a topic, I like to have an end in sight – but this one is different because I’m not an intuitive eating coach.

I’m just a girl with an eating disorder that feels confused by ‘intuitive eating’ methods – vs reality.

It’s not that intuitive eating shouldn’t be an end goal, it should. In my humble opinion, we all deserve to chow down on Pecan Pie at 4pm on Thanksgiving and move on with our lives.

But, I still feel like 4 years into recovery – and I’m often asking myself “what the hell is intuitive eating?”

Continue reading ““You Must Eat Intuitively … But, Actually, Eat At Exactly 8am, 12pm, 3pm, and 6pm”: The Truth About ‘Intuitive Eating’ In Recovery”

The One Sentence You Should Never Say To Someone With An Eating Disorder

“I can’t even tell that you have one.”

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This sentence helped take away 8 years and 40lbs of my life – and I’m reposting it here today because in light of NEDA week, I think it’s a reminder to anybody searching for resources on the internet.

“I can’t even tell that you have one.”

Such a simple few words. We say it all the time.

Continue reading “The One Sentence You Should Never Say To Someone With An Eating Disorder”

5 Things You Need to Know About Eating Disorders & Your Heart

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Originally seen on SheKnows.com

5 Truths You Need to Know About Eating Disorders and Your Heart

Here’s the truth about eating disorders: we are often uneducated as to their risks.

Sure, we “know” they are detrimental, but when I struggled for 8 years I had no real awareness as to what type of bodily harm I inflected on my organs.

I noticed the physical effects: thinning hair, sallow eyes, and stress fractures from running. I observed the light-headedness and fainting spells, but I never took time to explore what that meant internally, especially for my heart.

Now in recovery from my eating disorder, I spent time speaking with cardiologists and medical professionals around the country to learn more about the harmful effects that eating disorders can have on your organs – specifically, your heart.

Here’s what they had to share: Continue reading “5 Things You Need to Know About Eating Disorders & Your Heart”

“Can You Grab My Spanx?”: Weddings With An Eating Disorder

 

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Wedding season.

… We’ve all been there – or will be there – and once you do, you’ll know what I’m talking about.

Picture this:

It’s the weekend of your best friend’s wedding and you’re a bridesmaid.

You’re back at your parents house; surrounded by crinkled pictures, dolls in plastic bins, old love notes from high school boyfriends that you refuse to throw out (even if they’re all married with a kid on the way; nostalgia is a real disease), and a high school Geography and Algebra book you never returned.

You’ve just showered: the fumes of yesterday’s spray tan wafting through your nose. Your hair is up in some makeshift form, water running down your back, and a towel wrapped loosely around your chest.

You’re hunched over childhood chest of drawers.

Where the hell is it? You’re wondering, tossing aside a neon yellow tank top you bought in Costa Rica on your Senior trip.

You push around an oversized college t-shirt, a ragged spaghetti top, and some winter Long-Johns your mom bought one Christmas that you never wore them. (They’re polka dot for Christ’s sake).

You sigh. WHEN WAS THE LAST TIME I WORE THOSE BLOODY SPANX, You’re now chastising yourself – moving on from the Long-Johns.

Kim’s wedding? Amanda’s? April’s?

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Continue reading ““Can You Grab My Spanx?”: Weddings With An Eating Disorder”

“Is It Wrong To Have An ED Right Now?”: Grieving With An Eating Disorder

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9 years ago on 9/15/07, my best friend fell out of a tree and in a moment, he was gone.

He was just – gone. My life, his family, our friends – forever altered the night my best friend went to fetch a football from a tree, and a branch snapped.

There are images of that day that seem so clear – there are hours I can’t remember at all.

70+ phone calls. The muffled ring tone I thought was my alarm.

“Your phone’s been going off ALL morning,” my roommate complained.

Groggy, displaced, unaware – I picked up.

“He’s dead,” my best friend screamed. She screamed. I do remember that.

“Bradley,” she screamed. “Bradley fell. He fell. His brain. He was – he climbed a tree. He fell out of a tree.”

“He WHAT?” I said. “Say words Kristina – say fucking words,” I felt the phone go limp in my hand.

“He fell out of a tree,” she sobbed. “Jordan called. They all called. WHERE HAVE YOU BEEN. Lindsey, he’s gone. I don’t know what to do. He’s gone. He’s dead.”

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