break down and build up

Admittedly, last week was a busy one for me, but I’m happy to finally have the time and the headspace to be back at writing here on Tofu Swag. I missed my Swagsters!

Between a fun day in the Berkshires, an outdoor concert with a great friend and celebrating Bastille Day with a fellow Francophile/Francophone, last week included a lot of fun times.

There was also a lot of  tough stuff happening last week. The fact is, friends, that things aren’t always perfect. Life isn’t always willing to just hand you what it is you want. Relationships aren’t always easy, coping isn’t always ones greatest skill and sometimes you drop your awareness for a split second. And that might be all it takes.

That’s the thing about recovery. You get kinda good at it. You might even be willing to say you’re a recovery champion (and you ARE!). But sometimes, as good as you get, life throws a curve ball that you weren’t expecting, and in your moment of confusion as to what just happened… you drop your awareness. And one part about eating disorder and anxiety disorder is that it may only take that passing moment for the disorder to find it’s opening and try to get you back.

I don’t want to go into details, that’s not really necessary, but suffice it to say that this weekend was about closing up the tiny opening that there was, and engaging in the work it takes to say NO to disordered thinking.

Things weren’t perfect but what matters is what I have taken away from it all. I could say to myself, “Jenny, you failed this weekend. You did things you shouldn’t have done. You acted in ways you shouldn’t have acted.” I could continue to punish myself.

But I refuse.

Because that is the disorder. That is not me.

Instead, I decided yesterday to be proud of myself. (You hear that, negative voice?! PROUD.)

I’m proud because I stopped disordered thinking and behavior in it’s tracks. I’m proud because I recognized that sometimes the voice of disorder is louder, but it is NEVER stronger than me. I’m proud because instead of telling myself I’m weak or that I failed, I smiled at the opportunity that has been given to me to make the necessary changes to flourish and grow. I’m proud because in the middle of all the darkness, there is always still my light and I refuse to let it be put out.

Yesterday I renewed my vow to make my life mine. I opened myself up, once more, to the good that life has to offer. This is my only life and not a second of it will ever be stolen by despair. Today I woke up feeling more hopeful than I had in a while. I was ready to smile and greet the day.

I woke up with energy I hadn’t had in days. Jenny was back. I destroyed a workout that reminded me of my inner strength and perseverance. I went to the grocery store, excited and feeling creative once again.  I discovered the courage to be honest with you all about my imperfections. I’m not outing my weaknesses, I’m applauding my strengths.

Today I was also finally able to register for classes! Yes, friends, you heard it here first (or second, because I said it on twitter earlier. hehe) I’m going back to school in the fall. I’m getting a second degree and the ball is now rolling. Changes are on the horizon and I’m walking towards the life I know I can create for myself… the life I know I deserve.

I’d like to invite you all, right now, wherever you are to repeat this mantra: I WILL MAKE MY LIFE MINE.

Maybe you struggle in the same way I do, and maybe you don’t. But it never hurts to remind ourselves that we are ultimately the master’s of our destinies. We are given opportunities (from whomever or whatever you want to call it. I say the Universe, but maybe to you it’s God or Mother Nature, or Allah etc…), but it is up to us to keep our hearts, eyes, minds open to them. It is up to us to seize them.

My swag-building goal for this week is to work on my openness and my awareness. I’m going to do the following 3 things to work on that:

1. I am going to meditate every day for a minimum of 5 minutes.
2. Every night I will write down 3 things I am proud of myself for doing during the day.
3. Every morning when I wake up, I will say to myself the following: Today I will do practice awareness. I will engage in that which serves me goodness. Today I will make my life mine.

I don’t want to go to deeply into spirituality on this blog, but allow me this one thing… I don’t care what you follow or believe, but I will say this about spirituality: It saves. So this week, I’m going to tap back into my own brand of spirituality and find my way Home.

What will you do this week to build yourselves up, Swagsters? Maybe it’s more spiritual, or maybe you have some other goals? But I challenge you this week to do things that remind you how strong you are as a person and how capable you are of creating the life you deserve! I welcome comments and tweets and if you’d prefer a private conversation, I’d welcome emails as well (DM me on twitter first).

Happy Monday! It’s a great day for a fresh start!

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10 thoughts on “break down and build up

  1. ABSOLUTELY LOVE THIS POST I really give you credit because that positive voice is taking a hard stab at the ED. Which is not easy to do at all. I think everything you did shows that recovery is stronger than we think and our minds//bodies know that the ED is not worth it. I love your action steps and I think you having taken some amazing leaps this weekend. Way to go!

  2. This is beautiful, Jenny. I love your 3 goals. In fact, I think that I could benefit from trying to stick to all 3 of those myself! I am picturing you killing a workout and creating recipes in your wonderful mind as you stroll through the grocery store aisles and it makes me smile. I’ve been thinking of you all day and your triumph over the negative thinking. I cannot wait to hang out with you and Heather this weekend. The three of us will have so much fun, and ED isn’t invited.

  3. I love your three goals. I am definitely going to adopt these into my day, and TRY to take on a more positive mindset. It can be so hard but you definitely serve as a guiding light. Your honesty and heart are truly admirable and touching. I LOVE how you said ‘the voice of disorder is louder, but it is NEVER stronger.’ Amazing!

    • I’m so glad this touched you! I’m honest about my struggles because It helps me see I’m not alone. And if my struggles can help one other person, then they will never have been in vain! What are you proud of today? I’m about to make my list right now!

  4. It feels strange for me to type this as I’m still trying to open up and be honest like you! But, I’m proud that for the last week (after cutting out dairy because my belly wasn’t happy), I’ve had a different breakfast each day that may not have necessarily been as low calorie or filling, but made my tummy happy and showed me that I can switch things up without blowing up like a balloon : )
    I’m also PROUD that I read blogs like yours and have started reaching out to day hi! Instead of sitting on the silence and not giving any input. It makes me happy to show you some much deserving support!

    • yes! that’s so great! it’s awkward for me to give myself praise, too. but i figure that just means i need to practice. even just doing it for 2 days now, i see a difference. last night seemed almost forced, but tonight i found myself thinking, “yea! that WAS great, wasn’t it?!” haha. we’re just teaching ourselves to recognize how praise-worthy we are and that’s a beautiful thing! and just so you know, i’m proud of you too! 🙂

      • Wow, that means SO much to me. Thank you !! And I love that…it’s all about PRACTICE and consistency. And you gotta start somewhere! It will be a welcomed change when its just a part of my everyday thinking; these first few steps feel great! ❤

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