Today I was in yoga class and the teacher said “There is no end to the pose”.
In my recovery I was always looking for the end. When will this process be over. When I gained x number of pounds? When I was symptom free for x amount of time? When I was happy with my body image? For a while I thought that it would be over when I had something more important in my life – a baby. The goal of having a baby is what initially pulled me out of the torture pit of my disorder, I thought that finally fulfilling this goal might make my life finally worth more than my disorder.
For a while it did, I walked around and didn’t care how I looked because I had this beautiful baby boy in my arms. I was SO proud of him and what I had done to get him here. A few months later that started to fade. I started to be more and more concerned with my body, not only the post eating disorder weight gain but the post baby weight gain was leaning hard on my mind. A couple of months ago this started becoming a real concern in my mind and just a few weeks ago my mind started to really run away with me.
I started to get really intense urges for restriction and purging. I know exactly how to lose a lot of weight fast, I know exactly what I did last time to lose over 40lbs in 3 months even though it was over 12 years ago. The problem is that my life now is not conducive to exercising for hours a day or fasting for days on end. I was so deep into my thoughts and urges that I even started to resent my family for getting in the way of what I knew would work.
Thankfully, I was able to outlast this latest onslaught and am feeling in a much stronger place emotionally. What I realized this morning was that, there is no end to my journey. There is no place I can get to when I can drop my guard and get comfy. There is no time I can sit down and relax or pretend that I was never plagued by my eating disorder demon.The moment my guard is down and I think I’ve reached the end that demon can start to creep back in.
That’s not saying I can never enjoy my life or that I always have to be looking over my shoulder I just have to remember that there is no end to the pose. There is no end to the work, no goal to work towards when I can kick up my feet and relax. The goal is the process and to make this process as easy as possible. The goal is to get to a place of comfort (not completion) and then stay there. I can’t expect my journey to have an end or I will truly reach the end of my journey in recovery. A friend once said to me that as a parent I don’t have the privilege of being able to self destruct and she was so right.
So, my new outlook is to remember that there is no end to the pose, there is no place where I will be done exploring the fullness of any of my yoga poses, no time when it will be the same pose every day. And as such, there is no end to my recovery, no time I will be finished exploring the richness of life without my disorder.