Good afternoon everyone,
Today is a very different kind of friday for me.
Usually on Friday’s, I always have Shabbat dinner with my family.
When I was living completely immersed in my eating disorder, Friday’s were determined by one thing: my weight that morning.
If that number was good enough that day for Ed, he would let me go to dinner. If it wasn’t, he sometimes made me stay home, so I could not be tempted to eat around others and be able to restrict all I wanted.
Today is the first Friday since I’ve not had my scale that I do not have a Shabbat dinner with my family because they are going away for the weekend.
When I realized that I didn’t have dinner plans tonight, Ed immediately tried to creep back into my world and tell me what a great opportunity this would be to have a night all alone just for me and him. A night all devoted to restricting just one more time. Just one last night of restricting-especially since it is rare that no one is home and I have no dinner plans.
But instead of listening to him this morning, I actually wanted to listen to myself instead.
I want to take the opportunity I have tonight and turn it into a chance for me to be kind to myself.
I want to take this opportunity and shut Ed down. I want to break the pattern of thinking that on the Friday’s I don’t have dinner with my family, it is a green light to restrict.
Never, before this point in my recovery, do I remember having such a strong desire to be kind to myself and treat myself well.
I did think about what I could do tonight since I’ll be home alone.
I did think about going to the gym. I did think about getting by with a dinner that would not be in my best interest. I did 100% think about it all.
But the thing is, none of those things even sounded appealing to me today.
The first idea that came into my mind this morning, was that I want to take myself on a date.
I want to have a date night at home just for me. I want to be able to enjoy being with myself, and I want to be able to actually cook myself dinner, sit down, and enjoy it.
At first, I only said the idea out loud and then quickly told E that I am not ready for this. But by the end of the session, I decided that I am ready.
Why should I not be ready to be kind to myself and to treat myself to my very own date night?
I am not saying that it will be easy.
I actually know there might be moments or even whole minutes while cooking or eating my meal, that I will feel uncomfortable, fearful, or unworthy.
But I also know, that those moments will be overpowered by the strength and power that I will feel from treating myself well.
It is beautiful to me to be able to look back on 67 days ago and realize that if this exact situation were to happen then, I would be sitting here now in pure and utter bliss fantasizing about how great it will be to not eat tonight.
But now, now I am sitting here, a little afraid, but also excited, ready, and wanting to treat myself well. I actually feel I owe it to myself to treat myself well tonight.
I already went and got the food I will make. I know exactly how I want to make it. I might even light a few candles.
These concepts of me wanting to treat myself with kindness, of me being OK with being alone with myself, and of me actually turning down the opportunity to skip a meal or restrict, speaks volumes to me about where I am in my recovery today.
I know Ed will try to take a seat right beside me on my date with myself tonight, and I am not going to be unrealistic and try to say he won’t be there, because he most certainly will.
But I am realizing that it is possible to acknowledge his presence, realize he is trying to pull me down, and then move on with my recovery for that moment, and that is what I will try to do tonight.
I am not going to put on some old tight clothes tonight.
I am not going to put on anything fancy and try to be something I’m not.
I am going to wear my most comfortable clothes, leave my hair however it decides to be, and I am just going to let me be me and try to enjoy every second of it.
Yup, I am actually having a date night with myself, crazy or not-it is a big step in my recovery.
And when I am sitting down at the table tonight with the meal that I will have cooked all for me, I will take a moment, close my eyes and whisper to myself, “hello life.”