Day 192: Lessons Are Clothed In Gray

Hi everyone,

My apologies for a late post, today was a busy day-and a gray one at that.

Usually, my days are very consistent. Either they are extremely busy and hectic, or they are very relaxing and calm. Sometimes I eat exactly on my meal plan, sometimes I don’t at all. Either way, I am able to tell when my day is white, black, or gray.

Today was definitely a day lived in the gray, and it felt weird to me.

I wish I could sit and think of a better or more articulate word for it, but weird or out of place are the two descriptions that come to mind.

I went running today on what I thought was a 3 mile loop at a park. OK, well, I had intended to go running the whole time, but I stopped and walked part of it-gray area number one.

Then, when I looked at the app on my phone that tracks how far I walk or run, after I got back to my car, it said only two miles-and I thought it was 3-gray area number two.

For lunch, I wasn’t really in the mood to eat, so I got a little bit of frozen yogurt, and only ate half of it-does that count as restricting, or am I just listening to my body that it wasn’t hungry?-gray area number 3.

Life in general right now, is gray. I don’t have specific plans for my weekend yet, but I know I’ll make some-but even that is gray for me.

So much gray today, yet here I am at the end of the night, sitting and writing about it so matter of factly.

I am not saying I like living in the gray because I don’t, I don’t at all. It feels like a big blur to me. But, I do like that I can recognize the gray now.

Before recovery, my life was only black and white, and I could not imagine it any other way.

“Genius and virtue are to be more often found clothed in gray than in peacock bright”.-Van Wyck Brooks

I like this quote because I think over time, it is going to prove itself to be true to me.

Maybe it is days like these, where I walked instead of ran the whole time-or where I had to figure out if my lunch was really what I wanted or what Ed wanted-or on weekends when plans are not set in stone-maybe these are the times I will discover the most about my journey and most about myself.

When things are black and white, there really is no discovering left to do-all the answers are right there in front of you.

Living in the gray areas, means giving room and space to thinking about the answers that are not there,.

For example, even asking myself the simple question what do I want to eat for lunch, instead of eating the same thing I always do when I am in my black and white state of mind.

The gray is kind of scary, don’t you think?

It gives us the undeniable time to think about why we are doing what we’re doing, and if we’re satisfied with it.

For me personally, I was not satisfied with some of the decisions that I made today, and the gray areas helped me see that.

I should have eaten what I wanted and how much I wanted for that lunch, and I should have walked more and ran less if I felt tired on my run, and more than that-I should have not even checked the distance tracker.

But the should s are not important in the gray areas of life-they are only important to the black and the white.

Should, would, could-those words belong to the world of black and white.

Learning and experience-those words belongs to  the grays.

These learning experiences about how to live my life in recovery, whether it be about food or people, will indefinitely be clothed in gray.

So, today was dressed in gray, and that’s OK.

Gray skies are nothing but clouds moving anyway, so maybe tomorrow it will be a little bit more clear…and if not, I’ll look for the lessons and beauty hidden in the gray anyway.

Hello life.

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3 thoughts on “Day 192: Lessons Are Clothed In Gray

  1. Shira,
    I think accepting that life is sometimes ambiguous (gray) helps us to give up trying to control everything and live in the moment instead. Because when you’re so busy trying to control everything, you miss out on what’s really happening right before you. Living in the present is truly living your life and that is a good thing.
    I was recently interviewed and asked what advice I would give to people who are trying to find their life’s purpose. It was a big and complicated question. But my answer was rather simple. I believe that we should embrace today because that is all we really have. The past is gone and the future may not arrive, at least in the way we hope it will. So paying attention to the little everyday things gives definition to our lives. In the end, it is the accumulation of all the small moments that gives our life meaning.
    It takes time and patience and a lot of faith to become comfortable with the gray. But during the past six months you have made a good start. You have come such a long way. If success is measured in distance traveled, you are already a success.
    I love you.

  2. You are such an inspiration to me. I completely agree..learning to “live in the gray” is so tough, especially after an eating disorder. I’m in the VERY early stages of recovery right now and giving up control is TERRIFYING.

    But your blog has been so encouraging to me, I can’t even explain! So keep your head up girl and have patience. You’ll figure it out 🙂

    Much love,
    Andie

    • Hi Andie,

      Thank you so much from the bottom of my heart for this comment. I really wasn’t having the greatest day, and I just read this, and it turned it all around. We are in this fight for recovery together, and it feels so good to know that are other people like me fighting too. Go us =)

      Sending you strength, hope and love,
      Shira

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