Commitment in anything is a funny concept. Something about dedicating yourself to something wholly can be terrifying, ask anyone who has ever had cold feet the weeks or night before their wedding! I had cold feet before I was married, not because I was worried about spending the rest of my life with him but because I was afraid I couldn’t commit to recovering from my eating disorder and I felt it was unfair to have C commit to me in the hopes I would eventually find freedom from my demons. I could commit myself to him but I was having an incredibly hard time committing myself to recovery.
The biggest issue I had was that I thought I was committing to a lifetime of recovery which seemed impossible. I had only just started to actively recover and make headway in the fight against my disorder 3 months before I was married, how was I supposed to promise that I could crawl out of the pit forever? I finally broke down and told C about how I was feeling and he told me that I didn’t have to commit to recovery forever, I just had to commit to trying to recover. Then and there I promised that I would keep trying, no matter what.
Something I’ve learned about commitment is that it isn’t a one time decision. Not only do you have to choose recovery over and over but you have to constantly commit and re-commit to it. I constantly find myself recommitting to things in my life like treating my dog better, walking her every day, making sure my son has at least one great thing that happens every day, waking up early to get things together, sticking to my weekly meal plan. Commitment isn’t a one time decision but something that is meant to be revisited and reconsidered often. Just because I miss a few days of walking my dog doesn’t mean that I should give up on her or on myself. I realize that I have lost my commitment and recommit, we go out for a walk. Just because you slip up in recovery doesn’t mean that all hope is lost. Realize that you have faltered (not failed, that is a crucial distinction) and recommit. Recommit as many times as you have to, just dedicate yourself to trying no matter what comes.
I didn’t commit to recovery forever, I just committed to recovery for “now”, but a thousand “now”s have somehow become forever.