Sunday, October 25, 2009
last week, i performed size ate at Dominican College in Orangeburg, NY. after the show, a young woman came up to me and after a few initial pleasantries, asked, "so... there is no clinical definition of recovery out there. what does recovery mean to you?"
of course, my recovery is all i can discuss because the path to recovery is varied and many, and my recovery is the only recovery i'm an expert on (and even that is debatable on certain days).
what does my recovery look like?
not scheduling my meals, but eating intuitively, like a toddler. when i'm hungry and with passion, enjoyment and curiosity. sitting down to a meal, ordering and enjoying(!) whatever my body wants and needs - a cheeseburger with bacon and fries, or brown rice with chickpeas and broccoli raab, or a 2nd piece of birthday cake - eating until i'm full, then stopping because satiated, not stuffed. all of this happening without too much handwringing or having to give it too much thought. then coming back and doing it again when my belly starts to gently rumble.
exercising when my body and mind craves movement - enjoyful movement - not because i am trying to tone or lose or tighten. not scheduling 5 daily workouts/week because the exercise magazine says so. moving because it brings me joy and because it helps me live my life with less anxiety and fewer migraines.
knowing how to recognize the self-destructive thoughts as just that, thoughts, not instructions. not truth, just thoughts. thoughts that i have the choice to listen to or not. then, when these thoughts beckon, knowing how to take care of myself, mother myself. metaphorically, letting that little girl throw her temper tantrum, or picking up that scared little lonely girl into my arms and letting her cry and shushing her to sleep with kind words, a warm bath and hot tea.
that's pretty much it.
simply put, recovery for me, is freedom. freedom to eat, to move and to feel whatever it is i need and want and not being bound by what others tell me how i should eat, how i should move, how i should feel.
in my case, recovery has yielded me a life populated by coulds as opposed to shoulds.
what does your recovery mean to you? struggling? if you could ask a Genie to grant you recovery, what would it look like to you? no limits.