I went to my first sober concert last night since the 9th grade. It was a trip. I didn’t want to drink but I had this urge to get in the beer line. It was like I was forgetting to do something, that I needed to go stand there with the other people. I can’t say I was a fan of the band because Jerry Garcia ruined that for me years ago and this was a billboard band from the 90’s. The familiar songs reminded me of the college bar. I could close my eyes and remember playing pool and who was around and floods of memories of beer and Jagermeister- that was my drink in college… shots of Jagermeister and gallons of 3.2 beer. The thoughts of it makes me want to hurl now. I went because my friend had an extra ticket. I wouldn’t have sought it out on my own. I’m glad for the experience. She wasn’t drinking either even though I told her it wouldn’t bother me if she did. It was a challenge getting myself there. I’ve been such a hermit the last few months. It’s been safer for me to stay home.
Today, I’m going to a Polynesian festival. I met a Samoan woman at one of my accounts about a month ago and she invited me. I lived in Tonga as a peace corps volunteer in 2001-2003. There are very few Tongans in Tennessee or Polynesians for that matter. They tend to cloister together so I am hoping that I have found some new friends. I’m a white lady who speaks Tongan so this should be fun. I wish I didn’t have social anxiety. I think I will be ok though. I met her sons the other day and the old familiar feeling of being accepted and loved was there immediately. Polynesians are like that, a group of people who love first and judge second. Not that they don’t judge and gossip but the act of hospitality is so strong in their culture it’s easy to be acquaintances if that makes any sense. I’m excited and a little nervous. I just hope they have some of the foods that I have been missing from the islands. Taro, kapa pulu, those donut things, I don’t know what else.
Speaking of foods, my eating disorder is still a mess but my sobriety is good. I think I am making a little progress with getting ready to be “recovered” from anorexia. I get it intellectually, I want it in my heart, it’s my mind that is being the asshole. I have found some new resources online. I know I am the only one that can do this, it’s up to me. I am working on the “invisible hurdle” with my therapist. I need some weight restoration but other than that I think I am on the right path for going forward. I think not drinking is a little easier because I am really good at restricting. Or at least that’s what I tell my therapist. When I was in treatment last winter I was drinking regularly. It’s either one or the other. Now, I have to do both if I want my life to progress towards a fulfilling future. Get back to the things I love, like traveling and adventure. I miss who I used to be.
The things I have learned in the last few weeks about eating disorders: 1.) the BMI is a bunch of bullshit. It was formulated by the insurance industry, it’s not really hardcore science based. And they lowered it in the 70’s because of the whole Twiggy movement or our thin obsessed culture. So, I don’t need to strive for a particular BMI and I can throw that out as an indicator as to how well I am doing or not doing. 2.) It’s common for people with eating disorders to feel undeserving. I have known this about myself for a few years now, that I have a core belief that I don’t deserve anything. I have had inklings that it was tied to my father’s wealth. (BTW- he hasn’t given me money in years) but I think I realized in yoga that I feel undeserving because I can’t find a shred of love for the man in myself. It’s a little hard to explain because I haven’t really explored it fully but I know I have done a lot of work on forgiving him. I don’t hate him. I just don’t love him. Don’t think I ever can, will or want to and somehow this has affected my own self-acceptance and self-worth on such an unconscious level that it has manifested into a tangled web of dysfunction. Or maybe not. Maybe I just think too much.
‘Ofa Lahi ‘Atu!