Monday, February 28, 2011

National Eating Disorders Week


Last week was National Eating Disorders Week and according to NEDA, it was a record breaking success as far as rising awareness. It is really encouraging to know that this disease is starting to be acknowledged by more people. I had a great experience last weekend at the First Annual NEDA Walk in Tampa Bay, Florida. My friend and sister in recovery, was the coordinator of the event. Bailey is 17 and is a true champ. She and I were in treatment together at University of California San Diego. We didn't know each other before the week of treatment, but we have definitely been close ever since. She raised over $30,000 for treatment and research. It was so empowering to watch her speak of her recovery in front of so many people and then to have us lead the pack of walkers. It was truly incredible to see how many people came to support the cause. It's amazing how much life can change so quickly. My spiral downward into depression and restriction seemed to go from normal to life-threatening in a blink...but then to look back and see how far we have come, is incredible! The freedom I felt walking with Bailey was surreal.

We marched through the park remembering stories from our past. We reminisced on our days in rehab, thinking of our worst times. We remember the horror of Bailey's meatball sub, and my terrifying quesadilla...and then laughed histarically because we have new minds now. We can now see out of the trenches we were trapped in. We can now giggle at the silly habits we were so obsessed with. When fully recovery is in reach, there comes a point where you can feel joy through the terrible things that have happened. I'm not saying that it is to be mocked or that people who struggle don't have a right to feel the way they do...but when recovery is achieved, it feels good to be able to find humor in being afraid of a quesadilla!

Overall, National Eating Disorders Week seemed very successful. I am so proud of those who are taking the necessary steps to begin recovery and continue the process. I am so excited to see how awareness continues to spread!

D and K

Good Read

This was an article we came across and found it to be very interesting! Hope you enjoy.

D and K

Thursday, February 10, 2011

Love and Support


During times of AN, we as the love and support really need to be careful about the things we say and do. The mind is at such a delicate state while going through this process and many times the littlest things can trigger a reaction we were not expecting.

I always let my wife know how beautiful I think she is, and that is something that I will never stop letting her know. However, during the times of her struggle, I had to be careful when saying that to her because of the fact that her mind was just not all their to really comprehend what I meant. Someone that is struggling with AN, can totally spin that around and take that as they need to do more now to look beautiful for you. I realized that some things that I just say naturally to my wife, became somewhat triggering and was something I needed to hold off on saying. Just a simple "you look beautiful today" became a trigger for my wife. I am lucky that I was able to catch this trigger early on, and as hard as it was to hold back on saying some nice things to my wife, (things that I thought were encouragement or confidence boosters) it had to be done for her sake. It's not necessarily a bad thing to tell your wife that she is beautiful. However, the point is to make the supporters aware that some things said to a healthy person would be a compliment, but to someone with an eating disorder, can be twisted into something completely different. Compliments are not bad. Just have a better sense of awareness.

One of the greatest things we can do as the love and support, is to stay positive through this process and let our significant others know that we are here every step of the way. Although many times they will not want you there, you have to show you strong love and support constantly letting them know you are right by their side. Look for things that may be triggering, and constantly look to push forward on the path to recovery. My wife and I feel we have a very unique story and are open to share every single detail with you all. Please feel free to contact us at any time, as we are very open to help. Our thoughts and prayers are with you.

D and K

Wednesday, February 2, 2011



There are many different stages, phases and faces of AN and all EDs. It is interesting to look at the disease from different angles and perspectives. To the sufferer, AN may start as a thought. It then grows into a decision, then a pattern, then an obsession. Not to say that having an ED is a is anything but. However, a small lifestyle change can quickly snowball into more. It is a fine line between control and obsession. To the outsider, friend or loved one, AN is see in a very different light.

I can confidently say that I am now recovered from my ED. Looking at my time of sickness is interesting now in hindsight. I remember the beginnings...a small decision to get healthier, to be a little bit better, to attain a higher level of perfection. I remember the first time I realized I had a fear of food. I remember the pain, hopelessness and fatigue in the throws of the illness, and yet the rush of needing to start the pattern all over again the next day. I remember treatment...the hell that it was, but the light that came of it. I remember recovery, the good days and bad, the discouragement, but then hope that some days were getting a lot better. I remember the feeling of freedom. A freedom I couldn't have fathomed only a short time before. Perspective is interesting...and it is interesting how ED can change his face to fit the deceit of that moment. In the middle of battling the illness it is hard to think about others. It's just a reality that when the mind is malnourished, it can't focus correctly on all it is meant to. I wasn't able to consider the concerns of those surrounding me. The lies were too much to overcome on my own.

Maudsley Method is an interesting school of thought in that it recognizes the lack of ability in the malnourished mind to think concretely. Since the one who is sick cannot make rational decisions, he or she needs help to make those decisions in order to live. Seems pretty simple, doesn't it? Now that my mind and body are re-fed, I can see their perspective. My husband and parents were looking out for my best interest, even when at times it seemed that they were ruining me and everything I had created.

There is so much to be said, but I know that I wouldn't be here if it wasn't for my husband, parents and those who supported me the entire recovery process. They chose my meals when I couldn't. They chose life for me when I didn't want it. EDs are complex. Everyone is different, but all are treatable. I see now the importance of community in the treatment process and how it has changed my life. Perspective is interesting...and now my world has become much bigger.

D and K