10 days of complete abstinence!!

•January 12, 2013 • Leave a Comment

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Here I Am Again

•January 3, 2013 • 2 Comments

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=as732R1A0JE

Please check out my latest video..it explains a lot.

All my love,

Candace

Here I Go Again, On My Own

•December 6, 2012 • 2 Comments

The sun has yet to begin to rise and already I am awake, as usual. I have been up for quite a while now, thinking long and hard on my life. Last night I called into a ABA meeting, of which the topic hit quite home with me, almost as if the Universe was screaming: “Candace!! We are talking to YOOOUU!!” The topic was the Twelth Step, since it was the first Wednesday of the month, but the meeting was more geared towards helping others by sharing your experience, strength, and hope. Basically, what I realized boils down to this: I use activism sometimes to be able to put the focus off of my own issues I may be dealing with at the moment. A few days ago I described my last few months, and how I had taken some time for myself. This is all find and good, but the fact of the matter is, it was not near long enough. I have been battling this disease since I was 5 years old..I am 18 now. A few weeks is not near enough time to even get one foot planted firmly in my recovery. So, with this said, it is with a lot of pondering and a heavy heart that I have decided to take more time to find myself. I will not be posting on my blog/YouTube channel for a while, using that time to work on my own issues and current circumstances. There is a lot going on in my life right now and the past few days have been rather difficult for me. My depression has reared its ugly head yet again, my eating is becoming a bigger struggle, and overall, I just feel worthless. I have my head on straight enough to be able to see that these are some of the many prerequisites to a relapse..and that is something I WILL NOT ALLOW TO HAPPEN. Thus, I am going to take some time to really, truly focus on myself. My thanks goes out to you all for all of your support and love, and I promise, I will be back soon. This was a very difficult decision for me to make, considering how vital my recovery outreach is to me, but I know that I cannot possibly help people if I fall into relapse, or worse, death. All my love until I write again, and please do not hesitate to contact me if you need someone to which to listen/talk. You can reach me on here, message me, or text/call. Thank you all for understanding during this challenging time. ❤ Stay strong, my dearests.

My Absence in A Nutshell

•December 2, 2012 • 3 Comments

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First and foremost, I would like to make my amends for my posting absence. It is not that I neglected my recovery nor my blog, but I had to make the painful yet vital decision to take some time to get myself back together. I could ramble on, composing words of complete sincerity and honesty in order to attempt to explain the last few months of my life since leaving treatment. I could tell you of my triumphs, mishaps, breakup, and relationship. However, it is with my paramount dignity that I refrain from doing just that, because I know where that could lead: excuses. There is no excuse in existence to explain my behavior towards myself and others the past few months. There is but one word to describe what I went through, and that is relapse. Yes, within weeks of getting out of treatment (more precisely, in the airport home) relapse had already succumbed me into its deadly vice, a place I never in a million years imagined I would ever be. I was able to deny it for a while, however, excusing my slips as mere “bumps” in recovery. Little did I know, however, these little “bumps” would lead to a full-blown relapse. After about two months of pure hell, I finally began to see what I, or more rather, the disease was doing to me; anorexia/addiction was controlling my life yet again. Had I not just spent 3 months fighting this monster? Had I forgotten everything that I learned? Sadly, at first, once I realized my disposition, I told myself that I was merely doomed: I had left treatment prematurely—due money restrains—and had no possible way of getting back. Oh, but try I did. I tried and tried—phone calls, bank sums, begging, manipulating..all to no avail. At first, the recognition at the unfeasibility of my going back to treatment disheartened me so. I once again was suicidal and had decided, lugubriously, that death would do recovery and me part. But, it was after a wild dream one evening, in which yes, I did in fact die, that I awoke with a complete perspective change: treatment was not standing in between recovery and I—I was. If I truly wanted recovery, then I could achieve just that, no matter where I was on this green earth. After all, is that not what, if anything, going to Shades taught me? I have the strength..I just have to apply it. That’s when my life truly started to take off. I contacted a sponsor from Shades and began trying to find options that I could exploit at home. No community meetings in town? How about we try phone meetings. I soon found a group of Anorexics and Bulimics Anonymous Phone Meetings that (to my utter and charming revelation) had one every day. Not just once a week or three times a year; EVERY DAY OF THE WEEK. So began my nightly ABA phone meetings. The very first one I called to which I called in was terrifying. I was so afraid, so scared..of what? I do not know. However, once the hour was up I was in such extraordinary spirits, feeling better than I had in so long; that meeting that Monday evening saved my life. It was exactly like being at the meeting itself, yet in the coziness of my PJ’s, messy hair, and mute button.

I began calling into meetings every day, gaining the experience, strength, and hope I needed to get back on my meal/exercise plans and into my recovery literature. Now, almost two weeks since that first evening, I can now say that I, Candace, have made it through my first (and what I desire and determine to be my last) relapse. At first, upon this notion, I was very frustrated in myself and what I had done. Ashamed, mortified, discouraged—no doubt. But after a splendid and eye-opening conversation with a very dear friend, I realized how truly grateful I am for my relapse and having been through it. I learned so much, not only about myself but about the world. My acumen on life and the view which I hold has changed, and I am able to more rationally handle situations that I could not before. I honestly cannot hold blame to myself, to a feebleness of any kind, for my relapse. I arrived home from my sheltered haven to my “real” life I left behind: my parents’ divorce, a concerned community, the stress of my senior year of high school. Considering the circumstances to which I arrived home, I cannot be disappointed in myself: ‘for I reacted exactly the way the “old” Candace would in the said position. I merely forgot, provisionally, all I had learned those three months. It just took me a bit to find it yet again.

So, in conclusion, I would like to yet again make my amends for my absence but explain to you that during the course of the past few months, I decided to take a break from my outreach to focus on myself..the way Shades taught me needs to be done sometimes. No matter how much I want to help people and inspire them, I cannot possibly do this if I, myself, am dying. However, it is with great joy and hope that I come back to you all, and recommence my life’s purpose—sharing with you my journey in recovery..and that includes the rough patches of relapse.

Now that the so-called white elephant is out of the box, I would like to update you all on the little ecstasies of my life currently. School is going well and I am now back to my full schedule. I have great grades and am handling the stress quite well, I do so believe. I was accepted into prestigious, private college, McMurry University (five minutes down the road from Shades!) with a starter scholarship of $46,000, and am in the line for the Honors College full-tuition scholarship on top of that. My interview for the said position is February 9th, and I am stoked to the grandest degree. Back in October I took my first solo plane ride to Abilene for a WarHawk Preview day at the school, and after eight hours and the VIP treatment by the staff, I knew that this is the college at which I want to spend my next four years. Not only do they have one of the best, most academically advanced Honors Programs in the nation, they are so interested in my story and my hopes for starting an ED Education Program at the college. The feeling of belonging I feel there is so..surreal, to say the very least. So with school at the bottom of my stresses (by the way, I made my first B on a big Calculus test and instead of FREAKING OUT, like pre-recovery Candace would do, I patted myself on the back and said simply “I’m proud of you..that was a challenging test.”) I have been spending a lot of time in my recovery, setting aside time each day for my recovery literature, meetings, and meal planning. I even have been experimenting with cooking new things, things I would never before even dream of looking at, much less putting into my body, such as grilled shrimp, cereal, eggs, and cheese! It feels great and my body is finally getting back to a healthy state. I no longer am out of breath and hurting when I arrive to my classes and I can actually see muscle toning. After 17 years of being a literal walking skeleton, it is nice to actually have a healthy body. Granted, I still struggle immensely with body image issues and my body dysmorphia, but that is something I work on daily. I have recently really been diving into expressing my unique/vintage/1800’s/Candace style, complete with my hair feather and nose ring! It makes me feel gratified to go shopping, buy what I actually want and not what I think will receive me the least amount of attention, and then be told by the cashiers that I have a “totally rad style.” Yesterday, for an early 18th birthday present, my parents took me to get my first tattoo, in honor of my recovery. I designed it myself, and the base of it is the recovery symbol for eating disorder recovery, serving as the stem for the lotus flower, which is red, the color of anorexic recovery. The stem is the also the “o” for the word “Hope,” and I am so very satisfied with it. I absolutely adore it.

Speaking of 18th birthday presents, guess what? My first abstinent/clean birthday is in two days! I will be 18 years old and for the first time ever in my life, abstinent from restricting, clean from drugs, and free of self-harm. As for plans, I sadly have none, but I do plan on enjoying the day to the utmost degree. In the past, every birthday I have ever had has been either miserable, depressing, or both. Whether it was due to my obsessing over what I was to not eat/drink/look at or my droning over aging, each past year I awake the next day with regrets of my unfilled enjoyment of that one special day. This year, though.. this year shall be of grand difference.

Well, as I sit beneath this hazy lamplight, writing these words which you now read, I come to the end of my day’s post. I would like to take this time to thank each of you, even those to which I may never speak, for reading this post and for your continued prayers and encouragement. You, each of you living, breathing, worthy souls out there are the reasons why I keep fighting. Whether you know/believe it or not, you are my inspiration for living another day. Hence, with that, there is but one thing left to say: thank you. ❤

I See Sunny Skies Despite the Rain

•October 7, 2012 • 4 Comments

The moon hangs low in the sky this evening, much like the persona of my soul in its alabaster box. My thoughts float from subject to subject, unable to catch a glimpse of the sleep my body so desperately craves. My eyes, wide awake with the glow of a thousand starry skies, flit back and forth across the blackness of my room—I am wide awake and it is 2:03 in the morning. Although for the most part my insomniac tendencies have passed away, there are nights, much like tonight, where I find myself unable to get to rest. My mind races with the power of a dozen horses, my heart beats loudly within my chest—I am wide-eyed and thoughtful, aware of my every musing. I have had quite the sum on my mind lately, it seems. I have found myself often both physically and mentally exhausted, even when my day has not been comprised of much more than some nonchalant hours of studying. I make up in my mind that it is due to all of the changes that are currently taking my place, or, in retrospect, the milestones of recovery that I am achieving. It was decided this past Friday that I was ready to start back at school for half of my time, including the all-terrifying lunch hour. This, in itself, is a huge step for me. The people, the noise, the social atmosphere..it gives me chills just thinking about it. However, I know that I am strong enough to start moving forward in my recovery and for me this is the next big step. Also on Friday, I went to my first OA meeting since I have been home. I received my reestablishment chip, marking the day that I decided to get back on my recovery path and out of the darkness I was so close to chasing once again. It has been a horrific struggle the past few days, my mind taunting me with ugly thoughts of my self-worth and distorted images of my body, my blood craving a metallic debauchery against its cold veins, the Voice sanctioning my disgust with thoughts of restriction. However, in the face of these obstacles I have remained strong in my truth—I am still abstinent, clean, and self-harm free for exactly two days now. To many, two days seems barely worth noting, much less celebrating. In fact, it almost sounds like something to be ashamed of. Nevertheless, anyone who battles knows just how significant those two miniscule days truly are—they are motivation to keep moving forward. Today, as I get ready to face the many challenges that no doubt lie ahead, I will remember each person in this world, and keep their lives on my heart today. I will fight face-to-face with my disease and stand up for what I deserve. I will face life head-strong, knowing in my soul that this is right where I belong. My recovery is far from perfect, but I must believe that without a doubt, it is ALWAYS worth it.

Weather

•September 29, 2012 • 3 Comments

It’s freezing

my breaths deepen

the stillness of the night

it cries

with the wind

a silent soul

a broken laugh

dies

It’s raining

my lungs cave in

the stillness of the night

it gives

with the clouds

a damaged heart

a wretched traitor

lives

It’s snowing

the leaves are blowing

the stillness of the night

it speaks

with heaven’s kiss

a painful slip

a defaced map

keeps

It’s sunny

my skin is burning

the stillness of the night

it disappears

with the mistakes

a masochistic pain

a clumsy step

veers.

What Does Not Kill Me Makes Me Stronger

•September 24, 2012 • 1 Comment

I may be weak in the head, but my heart is resilient. Down here upon the ground, I feel fragmented and unaided—but I am neither of those things. I am strong in the heart and my willpower courses through my veins. My blood pumps with the opulent, sweet taste of victory over this disease. It is in my genes, in my every cell, the supremacy to keep defeating this monster. Am I a quitter? Do I deserve to wither away? NO. I am a fighter. Getting here, to this place I am currently, was hard as hell. Thus, who am I to believe the rest of my battle to be easy? It will not be. And that is okay.

I am not perfect, and my recovery will not be perfect. I will make (and have made) many slips and screw-ups in this journey. I will wake up some days with the strongest disposition to cut, use drugs, or starve. I will want nothing more than to die in that moment, and may even think to suicide as my answer. But, it is in those moments, such as the past few days, when I will find my inner strength. It is in those very moments, those vital, horrid seconds, when I will discover that my next decision will make or break me. Having these thoughts does not make oneself a screw-up, for lack of better wording; it just makes us human. I am human, for my flesh desires what my soul knows to be wrong. I will fall down, make mistakes, and feel imperfect quite possibly many days. It is these days, though, when my choice as to what to do next will prove that I am the strong, confident woman in recovery that I know myself to be.

As I sit here this morning, writing by the light of the rising sun, I muse silently over the past few weeks, and the choices I have made. Then, as almost a sign from the universe, I feel okay with myself and those selections because I am still here, battling. The day will never come when I will put down this shield and sword, ‘for I will always be a soldier in my own mind’s battleground.

Beauty lives in the ashes, and it is my choice to see my slip-ups as a chance to prove to myself that I am so much more than what ails me. ❤