[Valid Atom 1.0] Life With Cake: Eating Disorder Blog: Since My Last Post...

Monday, July 12, 2010

Since My Last Post...

Wow, I can't believe it has been months since I've posted... sorry! I'll do my best to catch you up. Let's see... I graduated from NYU with my MSW, as well as landed a job from my mental health/substance abuse facility internship (Yahoo!). I'm now learning how to become as competent as my current (and previous) therapist(s). Being on the other side of the couch isn't as easy as it looks! In between my cognitive reframing, paraphrasing, summarizing, reflecting, and display of nonverbal communication--clinical techniques delivered in my best therapist extraordinaire impersonation--I'm quietly panicking and wondering what the F*** I should say next! Aww... the joys of being a new clinician. It gets easier, though.

As a new clinician, I recently experienced my first professional disappointment. A couple of months ago, I interviewed for a position at an outpatient ED facility in the city--my dream job--and the interviewer told me I didn't have enough "clinical" experience. While her assertions were correct, I wondered if the nearly two decades of hell I went through with the ED would ever count for anything. I mean, really. I know EDs inside and out. She was right though; as I reflect back to the hospital days, when I hid my food in my napkin, I know that even the most seasoned clinicians are thrown curve balls by the ED population. On a brighter note, she said after I get some experience to contact her again. I know that all of my plans will happen in due time. Patience, Greta.

My patients teach me so much... the AA cliches that roll off their tongues in group remind me of what early recovery was like for me, and what I need to continue to do for my recovery. Through their resistance and struggle, I'm reminded that I NEVER want to return to the lonely island of isolation of the ED... even though on occasion my head still tries to persuade me to visit. Through their tears and perseverance, I'm reminded just how hard new recovery is, as well as how rewarding. I'm learning that the ED voice never fully dwindles. I guess that's why it's a called a disease.

Anyhoo...I'm continuing to work on my ongoing struggle of eating what I plan and only eating what I NEED to eat. It's really hard when you love food as much as I do. It's not like you get into recovery and your love of food dies. This is just another process of my recovery. I've stripped away the most harmful behaviors, now I'm stripping away behaviors that aren't necessarily harmful, but keep me in the obsession.

Recovery, at least for this ED, is a lengthy process.


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Mina C. said...

Hello, so glad to see you back and doing so well - congratulations on graduating and getting your first qualified job! Though as you say, we don't get what we want straight away. Patience Greta!... you shall get the dream job in due course.

Bloody hell, you've got your fair share of spam commenters, though, haven't you? Sorry i haven't commented sooner. I've just been reading from time to time since stumbling across your blog quite some time ago. Unfortunately i'm very far from recovery myself but, well, as you say, recovery's a lengthy process. I hope you're doing well.

Best of luck to you - stay free, as The Clash once sang.

wideeyedgirl said...

Aww, I just randomly did a search for ED recovery blogs. I wanna give you a hug. I'm a grad student in an MSW (and have my BSW)and want to go into mental health. I;m working on recovery too, I feel like although my "Dangerous" food behaviors have subsideed I still have all the emotional stuff left ( loneliness, crappy self esteem etc.) I also have a lack confidence amongst my peers and worry my own stuff will keep me from being my best for clients.
- Rocio

Bulimic Girl said...

thianks for the post i've read ypu blogs a few times since i became bulimic and it always reminds me there is an end to this thanks your blog helps me a lot.

Rachel said...

hi. i'm rachel and i am 14 years old. i have had bulimia since the age of eight but i don't feel that i can tell anyone.it goes through stages of being bad and slightly better.i go through sages of starvation for like 2 days then eat a whole chocolate cake and then hit the gym really hard and induce vomiting. i just want to be thin and beautiful. i need help. please help.

recoveringanorexic said...

I think we've crossed paths before in the internet world and I stopped by to read some of your blog again. I guess we have something in common (besides being in recovery from an ED). I just got a job as a substance abuse counselor. So far it's been hard as my patients keep relapsing, but one day at a time, right?

I applaud you for wanting to work with EDs. I asked myself when I started this if I wanted to work with people with EDs or drug addicts. I figured I'd be a lot less triggered with drug addicts -- so that's what I did. You are so strong and as time goes on you'll be able to use the two decades of ED knowledge and you'll be able to pass on that hope and wisdom to others. You are already doing that now.

mavicity said...

It's posts like this that keep me moving forward in my own personal battle of the bulge.
From patient to therapist, you've really gotten far. That means I've hope too, maybe I'll be a gym instructor or a vegan chef for all I know. Thank you so much!
Cheers! Mavic bulimia protein

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