Day 242: Lets Luncheon

Happy Friday everyone,

Today I spent the day covering an event for my university where the alumni were being honored, specifically those who were celebrating 50 years since graduating.

I was extremely nervous for this event for two reasons.

First, because I had to go in there by myself and hope that people would talk to me, and second, because half of the event consisted of a luncheon.

A luncheon= people plus food. Ed hated luncheons. Actually, Ed doesn’t do luncheons.

Ironic as it is, the woman who I happened to be interviewing right before the luncheon began, had an Ed of her own.

How do I know that? Without saying anything triggering to anyone , I will just say that she had all the physically visible signs of it.

And then when I told her we can continue to speak after the luncheon, she said,”Oh sweetheart, I don’t need to eat. We can still talk.”

And there was Ed’s moment he had been waiting for.

The green light to participate in an eating disorder along with someone else. I used to love those moments when I was so ruled by Ed.

But today, it wasn’t going to happen.

I actually had to tell her that I needed to go sit at my assigned table, so I couldn’t keep talking with her. I’m the one who excused myself to go eat.

I mean, wow, talk about a shift in the driver’s seat—Ed was not even in the car at that moment.

I sat across from her table, and while she didn’t touch any of her food, I knew I had to eat mine. And I was so glad I did.

Had I not gone to the luncheon, I would never have met Rusty, my favorite person I met all day.

Rusty was sitting next to me, and he was telling me about how he used to protest on campus for things he believed in.

And then he looked at me and said the comment that changed my whole day.

“I always tell my kids to leave Negative Ned at home.”

Who, I said?

“Negative Ned, you know, like a negative attitude. I tell them to leave it at home.”

I’ve heard of negative Nancy before…and now I’ve heard negative Ned.

It just made me realize yet again, that everyone has some kind of “Ed” of their own who they deal with on a daily basis, and just how Rusty said, I guess it really is our choice if we want to leave them at home or not.

I can definitely say that I left Ed at home today.

I ate that entire lunch and spent the whole luncheon talking to Rusty and his wife listening to their experiences and stories, and Ed wasn’t there to distract me.

And as for my first fear about people not wanting to talk to me today…I was proven so wrong.

All I needed to do was go say hi and ask them for their story.

Each and every single person, one after one after one, talked for at least 20 minutes about different parts of their lives they wanted to share with me.

I guess it goes to say how we all have a story that needs to be told, and sometimes it just takes someone asking us about it to let it out.

These people, most of them in their 80’s, were so happy to share their experiences, knowledge and wisdom with me.

Like E told me a few days ago, today was my chance to give someone else a platform to share their story, just how I am sharing mine on this blog.

Rusty left Ned at home today.

I left Ed at home today.

And now I am leaving him here again as I go to my family dinner.

Hello to luncheons, hello to leaving our Ed’s and Ned’s at home, and hello life.

 

 

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6 thoughts on “Day 242: Lets Luncheon

  1. We can learn so much from people! As you know I will speak to any stranger and always find something to talk about because if you are open to them everyone does have a story. A story of the day, a story of their year and special stories of their lives! And being a reporter you actually have a wonderful opportunity and reason to speak to total strangers! What a wonderful thing.
    So happy you were able to be present today and enjoy the people you met and that ED wasn’t even in the car!

  2. Awhile back I tried to become a volunteer at the local VA. I told them that I wanted to go sit with all those who could no longer care for themselves and listen to their stories. Old soldiers will tell the best stories, not just about their military experience, typically not about that at all, but about their lives. I remember talking to this man while waiting for my cars oil to be changed. He wasn’t being helped because he was dressed a bit frumpy (probably because of the arthritis in his hands) and was hard of hearing. I noticed a military insignia on his cap and thanked him for his service and asked how he was doing. That was all I had to say. He told me about his whole life, how after he got out he was a lawyer and worked in Washington DC. He told me about the people he met who later became Presidents of the US. He went on to tell me about his family and more until his ride came. Talk about being blown away in 15 minutes.

    Unfortunately, the volunteer application process is insane and I was never called. They have to do an FBI background check and said it is much harder to do on ex-military (meaning me), so that was that. I just thought I’d share since it seemed you would now understand how that felt.

    Also, big time congrats on eating. I find being around underweight people still very hard but am getting better. One neighbor is unbelievably thin, looking emaciated, and yet, she does not have an ED. She is much older than me and just has a tiny frame. She eats and the only “body” complaint she has is her utter frustration at people still calling her “cute” and “petite” at her age, oh and finding clothes. That has taught me not to jump to the conclusion that everyone who looks underweight has an ED. Obviously the woman in front of you did though. I am trying to change my thinking in that black and white way.

    I know I keep saying this but your commitment to recovery just continues to inspire me to move forward. Thank you…

    • Sasha thank you so much for this comment. I loved reading about that man you met and his experiences! I felt like I was right there with you getting to know his story. I feel like we can be so enriched just by others sharing our story with us, and vice versa. Also, I can’t believe I haven’t said this earlier, because reading your blog I know you served in our military-thank you for your service for our country. The fact that you wanted to go and volunteer shows so much about the kind of soul you have, and it’s their loss for not calling you back, as I know you could have truly touched their lives, as you have touched mine with your support.r Thank you for brightening my day with your comment, love and support, it really keeps me going.

  3. What a wonderful reminder to never let ED control our lives. I love reading your posts because when I feel like ED is about to start ruling my world again, these stop him right in his tracks. I can’t describe in words how happy I am to find your blog. Thank you so much for helping me feel like I can beat ED, no matter what life throws at me.

    • Thank you so much! To know that there are others who are fighting to live our lives free of Ed is so uplifting and encouraging to me too. The more we support each other the stronger we all get and the weaker our ed’s get! this comment truly made my whole day, I don’t have the right word to say, thank you so much.

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