Posted in mental health, recovery

When The Enemy Wins.

Hi Friends.

I have to talk to you about some stuff, is that alright? You might have noticed that my posts took a huge dive this summer. I’d like to say that it was because we’ve been super busy (which we are, but not like… so busy that I can’t post something, ya know?). Okay well, hold on. Let me tell you what led me to this post:
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I have a wonderful friend named Liberty (name not changed to protect the innocent) who I met in a bible study three weeks after my mom died. That bible study was pretty much my favorite one ever. Not the actual study itself, although that one wasn’t bad, it was just the perfectly picked group of women. Women I came to love individually in so many ways out side of the study. Two of which I now see multiple times a week, they’ve become my daily life. So Liberty reached out today and said she needed a sanity check and can one of us come over and keep her company and have our kids distract hers? And maybe let her talk to an adult for a minute? To that I said, “What free food is in it for me?” Because I mean, isn’t that what you’re supposed to ask? Lib always takes care of us, she’s like the best little hostess. She might have a gaggle of screaming kiddos requesting every spare inch of everything she has to give not only physically, but mentally, still she finds the energy and love to make me coffee (AND DINNER) and give me treats and give me a pep talk when I didn’t even know I had come over for one.

So, my darling friend and I got on a casual topic of health (not unusual. I’ve been very open about my eating disorder and struggles). And I just started crying. I had been holding so much in, so much heartache. I want to be done with this, I told her. I thought I was done. I had the surgery so that I could be forever done with this conversation. But then my mom died and I gained 70 pounds. And here I am two years later with the same 70 pounds and I’m a failure. And I feel like I can’t even blog anymore because I’m a hypocrite. How can I talk about getting help for your mental struggles and all that, when I can’t even help myself? How much longer can I talk about strength when I feel like I have no more to give? I’m not worthy of it. Who wants to read someone saying, “Hey guys! You are worthy. You are powerful. You are strong.” When a lot of times I have a hard time even believing it in myself if I still haven’t overcome a 30 year battle? When I went to Eating Recovery and still haven’t survived this?

To that she said, “Why are you letting the enemy tell you that people don’t need to hear that you’re struggling? Why are you letting the enemy hurt you? You are strong enough to speak up and fight. So fight.” (Or something along those lines that were much more elegant because she was pretty amazing at what she said tonight.)

So I’m telling you that I’ve let the enemy win in many ways this summer. The enemy has slowly started to take over in a lot of ways that I didn’t notice. Normally the enemy crashes in and takes me out in big ways, uses my mental health against me. This time I’m finally winning that battle. This time I’ve fought so hard. I owe a lot of that obviously to God, and my amazing friends and family, but I also a lot to this blog. I fully laid it all out and said, HEY. And you all said, ME TOO! And so we put our hearts out together and we grew stronger. (At least I feel like we did.) And so, the enemy is going to have a harder time taking me down that way. So, instead, he has to work from another angle. I’ve noticed I’ve stopped praying at night, I’ve stopped journaling, I’ve stopped exercising, I’ve stopped doing my bible studies… heck, I stopped opening my Bible outside of church, and mostly he’s started making me see myself through a different lens again. Even though I had gained the 70 pounds over a year ago, I was still able to see “Skinny Tabitha” in the mirror. I still was able to be like, “It’s fine because I’m still not 400 pounds like I once was.” And then a few months I started seeing Her again. (Pic with Liberty. It’s fine, she’ll be famous one day anyway, I’m sure. I need to put picture proof here so she won’t forget us little people.)

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I saw this picture posted on the church we attend together’s Instagram and instead of being like, “OMG LOOK HOW HAPPY AND CUTE WE ARE!” I cried. I said, “It’s Her.” And I felt defeated. I felt like I had truly finally, officially failed at this.

So, where do I go from here? How do you climb out of self pity? How do you defeat the enemy? How do you fight?

Well, I guess I have to start by doing all the stuff I stopped doing, right? Just start at the beginning again? Pick up a Bible. Pray. Journal. Move my butt. Right? That’s all you can do? Start again. And if it doesn’t work, you keep starting again. You keep digging your way out. You keep going. KEEP. GOING. Do not let the enemy win. I don’t know everything, but I do know that.

xo
Tab

Posted in Ramblings, recovery

The Fight to Write

I remember when I finally, after 16 years, accepted My bipolar diagnosis in November, one of the first things I said to my therapist at the time was, “What if the medication makes me stop….being me?”. I was instantly flooded with the fear that the medication would strip away all the things about me that made me who I am. And without those things, who was I going to be? What if I didn’t like that person? And worse, what if I couldn’t write anymore?

In a lot of ways, my fears became true…ish. The medication truly did prove that I am, in fact, bipolar. The medication stopped a lot of my obsessive thoughts, my irrational spending, my binge eating, and even some more parts of me that I don’t need to get into today because it isn’t the point here. I know those don’t sound like bad things to get rid of, they’re not. But it also got rid of some other things… like my desire to write.

Turns out the bipolar meds alone didn’t do the trick, I still need a high dose of depression meds as well. That’s something I’ve had a hard time accepting over the past few weeks. It’s hard to tell yourself that you need a lot of help to just be “okay”.

Sometimes someone will be so brave to come up to me and tell me they appreciate my writing and openness about my struggles. They’ll tell me that they also have to be medicated and tell me the one medication they’re taking to be okay. And then they ask me what I’m taking. And I internally shame myself.

I take 4 different medications to be okay. I take 4 medications to make it through the day in one piece. That is nothing to be ashamed of. Let me tell myself that again real quick, it is nothing to be ashamed of. You do what you have to do to be okay. You do what you have to do to get out of bed in the morning, to feed your family, to smile at your child, to hug your husband, to take a shower. You just do it. Because without those 4 medications, I absolutely cannot do any of that. And it is nothing I can control.

So back to the part of not writing. One of those medications seems to be fighting against that part of my brain. Let me explain. I still want to write. Often I tell myself, oh! I am going to discuss this! And then something in my brain kicks in and is like, We aren’t going to go there right now. We aren’t going to be sad, or hurt. We aren’t going to tap into anything that makes your brain think about the depression part. So then I give up and don’t do it. My brain has already moved on to something else.

I mean, am I glad my brain is trying to keep me out of depression? Sure. But at the same time, I feel like I was called to be open about mental health and it is driving me insane having to fight against it. So I haven’t written for a long time. I hope you’re still with me. And I hope you understand and forgive me. I’m going to try to fight against this long enough to write once a week.

Even if it means sitting in my car in a Starbucks parking lot because that’s when the feeling hits me. ❤

Posted in Uncategorized

Year in Review [ONE Messy Year!]

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Can you believe this blog is officially a year old today?! Exciting, I know. Where are my presents? Do you get presents for this sort of thing? No?

CRAP.

Well, fine. Let’s see what productive…or not so productive things we’ve done this year, shall we? [Here are some of my favorite posts from this first year!]

I officially posted my first post on February 21, 2017!

I talked to you about my infertility.

I decided to go back on depression medication after being off for 6 years.

I shared the hard parts that mentally come after gastric bypass surgery.

I shared screenshots showing you how I am a mess of a mother, and that’s totally okay.

We tried to take dye out of our kiddo’s diet.

I shared about being insecure in friendships…. more than once.

I opened up about letting go of my dreams of pregnancy.

I talked about being a suicide survivor and getting a semi-colon tattoo!

Talked about what home feels like.

I opened up about having an eating disorder.

I tried to understand grief.

I talked about our foster/adoption journey.

I talked about struggling to crawl out of bitterness.

Being vulnerable.

Wow, going through the past year of posts was quite the trip for me. There are a ton more posts than the ones I linked, but these were definitely my favorites. Ones that I cried through writing, ones that I got messages back telling me “thank you” privately. Ones that made me feel like this blog was actually doing something for someone out in my little corner of the world.

I hope the next year goes further. I hope my words can reach more people and maybe help more people feel that they aren’t alone. ❤

Thank you for being around for year one! Here’s to year two!

like/share/comment/send me anniversary gifts.

Posted in messy mama

World’s Worst Mom.

Tonight was really rough.

Just…really rough.

When I was younger, I was certain that I was going to have a thousand kids. I was going to be the World’s Best Mom and I was going to have this SUV where I drove them all to sports practices and they would all tumble out of my car in a pile of laughter and baseball cleats… and we would all live happily ever after. blah blah blah, right?

So fast forward to tonight. Well, first let me tell you that my child spent ages 2-4 begging me to play baseball. We literally counted down the days to when he would be old enough to play t-ball and I excitedly stalked the website waiting for registration to open last year. Man, was that a nightmare. Have you ever had a 4 year old boy play t-ball? No? Well, let me tell you that 4 year old boys tackle each other for no reason, they chase butterflies, they twirl in circles in the outfield, they throw bats, they cry when another kid gets the ball… oh it was HORRIBLE for an anxiety-ridden control freak mother. I smuggled wine in to the games. No, I’m not kidding.

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The second the season ended though, he begged for the new one to start. So, we have spent the past year talking about how if Mommy and Daddy are going to dish out $150 for a season of t-ball, then he isn’t going to chase a freakin’ butterfly and if I see him football tackle anyone in the middle of the game, I will come out there and football tackle him and I have a good 250 pounds on him.

So, tonight was the night we had to go turn in his paperwork. He was doing so well in the line, standing so still and patient and he was so chatty and excited. The high school baseball team was there and he was watching in awe. One of the boys walked by and gave him a high five and it was just going really well! When we were leaving, I saw that they had this cool program at the high school for Pre-k-5th graders where they get to go out on the field at home games with the baseball players and blah blah blah, all this cool stuff and I knew he’d love it because he always gets so jealous when he sees kids on the field during games. So, I signed him up! While I was filling out the paperwork, the sweet mamas at the table were trying to talk to him. They were asking him if he wanted to grow up and be a baseball player and various other stuff and he was being so rude. He started shouting NO! and hiding behind me. Then one of the high school baseball players came up to him and wanted to give him a baseball and he refused to take it and ran away and I was so embarrassed. This was not good for my high anxiety. I apologized profusely, took the ball and thanked the sweet kid, and got out of there with my ungrateful brat of a child and quickly power-walked with him to the car. And that’s where my spiral downward really took off…

I want to start by saying that I’m not at all proud of what I said and did in these moments. But I feel like no one speaks out loud about these moments because it’s not pretty and frankly, I’m tired of feeling like I’m the only mom that has these not pretty times. And if everyone reads this and is like, “Wow…Tabitha is a terrible mother, I’d NEVER behave like that.” Well, then fine. I’m alone and a terrible mom. I mean, I already admitted to sneaking wine into a t-ball game. So, great. 

So, when we got in the car I started shouting at him. I started telling him how rude he was and how ungrateful and hateful he is. How Daddy works so hard to pay for him to be able to do all these awesome things and he just sits around and treats us like crap. How those women were asking him questions and he was being the worst child ever by ignoring them and being hateful. I started crying and screaming more. I told him how much I didn’t want to be around him. I was having an anxiety attack.

Then I took a breath and called my husband, who calmed me down a bit. I took a deep breath and I thought, okay, Tabitha…you’re the jerk. Let’s maybe forgive him for behaving that way. He’s a kid, he’s five. He’s tired, it’s an hour before bedtime, he hasn’t had dinner, and he didn’t know those people. Let. It. Go.  So, I got us dinner in a drive-thru and on our drive home I tried to change my attitude and my voice and I explained to him in a cheerful way all the cool things that this cool group did. How he was going to get to go to all the baseball games at the school down the street (which he always begs to go to).

Me: Isn’t that going to be so much fun??!!!!
J:  NO! I DON’T WANT TO! [crosses arms over chest, kicks feet]
Me: You know what? FINE. JUST FINE. YOU WON’T BE DOING ANYTHING ANYMORE. YOU CAN JUST GO HOME AND GO TO BED. FORGET IT. YOU CAN JUST NEVER DO ANYTHING FUN AGAIN. FORGET IT. [I’m screaming and crying and it was a LOT of me telling him how he’s ungrateful and hateful and how I’m never taking him to anything ever again. And now he’s crying and I’m getting mad at him for crying…]

We get home and I throw his food on the kitchen table and tell him to eat. I grab my food and go sit away from him in my bedroom because I’m afraid of anymore damage that will come out of my mouth. I need to be away. I’m crying and shaking. I call my husband… who says something that made me just… feel like dirt.

“It was probably his anxiety.” 

… wow. How could I forget? What kind of selfish jerk am I? My child has extreme anxiety. It’s hard when you have two people with high anxiety together all the time. Especially when their anxiety manifests differently. Mine is triggered by things I obviously can’t control, like *shocker* other people’s behavior, embarrassment…. [other things, but these are the ones right here in front of us today.] Kiddo’s is triggered by social situations with adults. Not kids, adults. Or new places he’s never been to, new activities that he’s never done. Once he’s done them, been there, met the people, he’s 100% fine. It’s that initial situation. But the first time, he shuts down. I always forget that because I’m so social. My anxiety becomes so high in social situations that all I can focus on is how *I* am handling the social moment, not how he is. And when he isn’t handling it the way that *my* anxiety wants him to, I explode.

So, what have we learned here? My poor baby was having a little anxiety attack and I was making him feel like trash. I am not at all proud. I feel HORRIBLE. I feel like the World’s Worst Mother. Go ahead and give me my trophy, because I deserve it.

I composed myself, and I went with my head hanging low into his bedroom and crawled into his bed with him and cried. I admitted how horribly wrong I was, how I said hateful, horrible things and he did nothing wrong. That it is okay to be afraid of strangers, he was right to be cautious. I asked him for forgiveness and I told him it was okay if he was mad at me. We had a really long talk and he was so loving and forgiving and I could see and feel the relief come over him as we talked about the whole thing again. Now that he wasn’t in the middle of a panic attack, he was able to see the situation and be excited.

We only learned about Kiddo’s anxiety about 4-5 months ago and I am having a really hard time looking past my own to see his in times like these. I pray he doesn’t remember these moments, that he can truly forgive me and move on. I know that I’m not really the World’s Worst Mom. I know that I can’t be alone in this. I also know that I did something that some parents don’t do, I admitted I was wrong. I asked for forgiveness. Instead of being prideful and just standing my ground even when I’m wrong, I admitted I made a HUGE mistake. And in that moment I saw God in my baby boy. Because only God could create a loving and forgiving heart like his.

Please tell me I’m not alone here. And if you are having a rough time with your kiddo, I pray this hard time passes, that you allow yourself to forgive and be forgiven as well. ❤

xo
Tab

 

 

Posted in Ramblings, recovery

You’re so vain, you probably think this post is about you.

Well, it kind of is….

GAH, I can’t believe I didn’t post last week! So sorry! Well, not really because I’ve been so busy and haven’t had a minute to myself. So, really, how about you just get off my back? GREAT. (Warren…Warren…Where does all this hostility come from? – name that movie.)

Hey so, apparently January ends next week and I feel like I’ve done nothing wildly productive besides keeping my head above water. And I guess that’s all that matters, so I’ll take it. Last week we (me) talked about being vulnerable. Did you do it? Didn’t think so. That’s fine, I have another challenge for you and this one is way more fun: SELF CARE.

I’ve pretty much said I’m done with new years resolutions because I don’t need to give myself more ammunition to feel like a failure. So, I’m just trying to find little things I can work on that I know I can master. And frankly, forcing myself to take 10 minutes or more all to myself a day at this point in my life? Sign me up. I think I’ve gotten pretty good at it too. And don’t misunderstand what self care requires – it does not require you to go out and spend money you do not have. I have spent money, but not always. Most of the time I just use what I got.

So, here are my favorite ways to give myself some attention every day. (Yes, do it every day.)

1. Go to the gym. Not to obsess over weight or my body, but to feel good about myself. I don’t always “go hard”. Sometimes I just walk on the treadmill at a slow pace and listen to music and just enjoy the air conditioning and a moment without a child screaming at my face.

2. Pamper. That’s right, I said it. Pamper. But that doesn’t mean go out and drop money on an expensive massage, because I do NOT have money for that. So, I’ll make sure to take the extra time to put on makeup, use a face mask, or paint my nails. It makes me feel good sometimes. ❤

3. Read. Well, this one is obviously my favorite and doesn’t really need explaining. But really it’s just nice to put the rest of the world away and jump into a new one sometimes.

4. Music. Not just any music, but fun music. If I’m cleaning, I’ll turn on 90s jams or some oldies like the Beatles and the Monkees. I end up dancing around and singing while I clean. And that, my friend, is what Oprah calls “multitasking”.

So, obviously there are a million ways to self care, these are just some of my favorites. Let me know some new things for me to try! I’d really love some ideas!

I challenge you to do some self care this week! And when you do it, take a pic and tag me in it so I can see with the hashtag #ididittabithagetoffmyback yeah, seriously. Do it.

xo

Tab

Posted in Ramblings, recovery

Vulnerability Challenge.

What is vulnerability to you?

Is it sharing any kind of personal information? Is it crying in front of someone?

I’ve never had a problem sharing personal information. In fact, it was something that drove my mom nuts. When I went to a mental hospital at 17, she didn’t want anyone to know. She called a handful of people and basically threatened lives telling people not to let it get out. And then she was horrified when I was like …I’m… not going to pretend this didn’t happen… Maybe that’s what made me that way? I was broken down to my lowest point and I just looked around and saw so many people around me struggling too and thought… wait… we are all here, yet we all feel alone. Why? Why are we living in a world that makes us feel alone?

When we found out we were infertile, I was open. When we started fostering and it was hard, I was open. Those things aren’t vulnerability to me. In fact, I have a really hard time understanding why people don’t talk about that stuff more. Why that isn’t just… normal conversation? Life is hard, we all struggle, why don’t we just talk about it? Right? Am I the only one that feels that way? I hope not.

Does that mean that I don’t have moments of vulnerability? Of course not. I guess mine just looks different. Mine is admitting defeat at something I had full power over, like going back on my medication. Or like having the gastric bypass surgery. Lately I’ve challenged myself to push through something else that makes me feel extremely vulnerable… that’s texting a friend when my self esteem is at a 0% and just flat out saying how I feel. When I sent the following text, I cringed so hard at myself. I hated that I sent it because I haaaaaaaaaated that I was so needy. But I sent it anyway because I needed what I knew she’d say more than I needed my pride. Because I was crying and I was telling myself lies about myself and I simply can’t stand living this way anymore. I can’t let my inner jerk win anymore because it exhausts me. [excuse my typo, gahhhh leave me alone]

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Here’s what my mind does: it’ll pop up randomly in the middle of a perfectly fine day and say, “Hey, no one has texted you today… probably because your stupid jokes have gotten old. Do you think people get tired of you? I bet they get real tired of feeling like they have to hang out with you so much… probably feel like they have to because they know you have mental health issues. They’re afraid if they tell you no you’ll have some kind of episode.” There’s much more… but I’ll just leave it at that. And man, that is an exhausting person to live with in your mind. I pray none of you have to live with that. If you do though, you aren’t alone.

So, here’s my question for you – do you have someone besides a significant other that you can be vulnerable with? Is there a friend that you can send a text like this to? I know it might seem like something you couldn’t do, because trust me, a year ago… heck, even a few months ago, I would have never done this… but you can. You can and you should. And you need it to be someone whose response you know in your heart isn’t something they’re “just saying”. I know that she means what she said. How? Because she’s sent needy texts to me too. My challenge is for you to find someone. Find someone and send a text that says, “Hey. I’m going to need you to build me up on my really crappy days sometimes, okay? It might be 4pm on a Thursday and you’re just going to have to roll with it, okay? Because I struggle, and frankly I need someone and I want that someone to be you.” And if that person is like, “Ew, get off me.” Then kick that jerk to the curb. You just did yourself a real favor.

Okay, this is starting to get weirdly hostile.

xo
Tab

 

Posted in Ramblings, recovery

You got to know when to hold ’em, know when to fold ’em…

If the pictures I’m going to post of me trying to put Christmas decorations away aren’t the perfect representation of me trying to get my life together, I don’t know what is. 

So, today is the last day of 2017, eh? And everyone is going to post statuses, blogs, and videos all about their year and it’s all going to be super deep and profound? Great, me too. Let’s go.

What did 2017 bring me? Let’s see… a 70 pound weight gain, an acknowledgement of an eating disorder, a complete mental breakdown in regards to parenting…several times, eating disorder treatment, an acknowledgement of a bipolar diagnosis, finding out who real friends are, leaving a friend group I thought I was safe in, and some other stuff we don’t need to touch on…. this could get long. It was a very, very rough year. I did many things I wasn’t proud of.

Insert first decor pic:

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This is our main tree. It used to be my mother’s tree and it is my pride and joy. Man, it is so gorgeous. But when it came time to take this sucker down… it just would NOT GO BACK IN THE DAMN BOX. I called it a lot of names. As my sister Laura would say, I used a lot of “not Christmas words”, and I cried. Then I walked away.

This is my representation of my weight gain this year. 2016 was my skinniest year of my life. I had lost 180 pounds. Yep, you read that right. 180. But then my mom died, people lovingly brought us food every day for months… and desserts. And I slowly started eating the desserts. And the disorder I denied my whole life took over. I began sneaking and lying and bargaining… I gained 70 pounds back in a matter of a few months. It was very painful. Gaining weight with gastric bypass is not a comfortable thing to do, I’ll tell you that. Stretching that stomach back out HURTS. I let it become a sick and twisted punishment to myself. It was/is a horrible time for me. It’s still a battle today. But you know what? I sought help this year. I went to recovery for this…. a recovery I probably should still be attending, to be honest. And just like I asked for help with that… a few days later, I asked my husband to help me get this stupid tree back into the box. *stupid may not have been the word I used. 
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We have a tree that is strictly for “kid ornaments”. You know, those messy ornaments your kids make at school and bring home to you and they’re like, “LOOK MOM! I MADE THIS FOR YOU!” And the glitter falls in your lap, and it’s lopsided, and already falling apart and they’re so proud of themselves and you feel guilted into putting it on your tree? Yeah, I don’t. Not guilted one bit. #momoftheyear2017 I have a solution for that, a kid tree. He can add whatever makes his heart happy to this tree and I just do not even a little bit care. It’s in the guest bedroom because that window looks out to the front yard and so it adds a sparkly tree to the front. This tree was $20 at Walmart years ago, our first Christmas as a couple, and it USED to be a simple situation to take down. BUT APPARENTLY this year it turned against me. It decided that it would take it upon itself to just spring apart at random while I was taking the lights off and just fall to the floor like a dramatic 16 year old who just had her cell taken away. Mmkay. Great.

This is my representation of my parenting. I think everything is going great, we have days where we play at the park and we snuggle on the couch, and I think I’ve finally figured this thing out. And then I get a call from a school telling me he bit someone at 4 years old… or he pulled hair… or he did something else bat crap crazy. Or I have to leave a birthday party early because he decided it’d be a great idea to sneak away from the party and dump all the soap out all over the bathroom floor and play around in it when no one was looking. Again… at 4 years old. I spend a lot of days crying, a lot more yelling at him asking him why he can’t just “stop making these ridiculously bad choices? WHY CAN’T YOU JUST BE NORMAL?” And then I beat myself up for being such a hateful mom.

And then 2017 brought us an ADHD and high anxiety diagnosis. It brought us help and it brought us hope and it brought me understanding. He can’t help that he is how he is, it’s how he’s made. It’s how his brain works. He’s just being… him. Just like I have a brain that makes me act a certain way, say and do certain things, stress about unimportant things… his makes him impulsively decide to do things and worry and a thousand other things I never gave him grace for. 2017 brought me an extra breath before I respond. Not always, but mostly. We’re getting there.

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This final tree… this tree was our first “big kid tree purchase”. We were ready to graduate from our $20 Walmart tree and buy an adult tree. We went to Hobby Lobby the day after Christmas one year and got this $400 sucker for $80! We put it in our room this year because my mom’s tree is our main tree now, and it was pretty much the best decision ever and can I please just have a twinkly tree in my bedroom always? Well, this tree was the last to get taken down. I had already cried over the big one not fitting in the freakin’ box and I came into my bedroom to throw a fit and I’m not even a LITTLE BIT LYING when I tell you that I accidentally brushed this jerk and he JUST FELL OVER. I literally just… stood…there. Is this even real life? After what was probably 2 minutes, but felt like 30, I actually just started laughing a little. Like, how is this even real?

This tree just represents the rest of it all, everything I spend my life trying to control and take over. Everything I think I have a handle on and God’s like… can you just … stop? Like just stop. You don’t have this. I have it, but you don’t. So… just stop trying to do it. Walk away.

So I did. I walked away. This tree, and the others, sat this way for two days. And for once in my anxiety-ridden life, I didn’t stress about it. I just let it be that way until Charles came home to help me. Which, as I am typing this, is just proof that I can’t do life alone as much as I try to… and that’s okay.

2017 was one of the worst… I share a lot, but I don’t share it all. It was horrible. But at the same time, I grew so much. I had another lesson in true friends – this time in a good way, I walked away from some bad ones, I finally let myself get emotionally close to a few friends – which is something I very rarely do, I started this blog, I started some hobbies, I got to become a full-time nanny to one of my goddaughters, I got to take an actual vacation for the first time ever – Orlando! Harry Potter!, I got to take my kiddo on his first trip on a plane… I’m sure there’s much more good….

My goal in 2018 isn’t to really make a resolution, as much as it is to just… know when to hold ’em, know when fold ’em, know when to walk away… (that’s right, totally just referenced some Kenny Rogers.) I’m not going to try to control my 2018, I’m going to just let this one ride for once. I’m going to live, I’m going to love, and for once… I’m going to try to just breathe.

I hope you do the same. ❤

Happy New Year!
Tab

Posted in Ramblings

The Longest Tunnel in the World

I wrote this for everyone that has been there… but mostly I wrote it for one person who I know will get an email notification that I posted a new blog and this is way too long to text and she’s sleeping like an old lady right now and she totally knows who she is because of the old lady part. ❤

The longest tunnel in the world is one that feels like there will never been an end to. You’re halfway through, but all you can see is a deep blackness. You start to forget how long you’ve been walking and you get this intense feeling of claustrophobia. You start to feel like the tunnel walls are closing in, you start to get dizzy, and you are able to convince yourself that the concrete surrounding you will start to crumble and collapse on top of you. There is no way out and you’re alone. It’s cold and it’s lonely and the tears won’t stop falling. Your clothes are soaked, the tears have become an ocean that you are trying to swim in, but the tide keeps pulling you under.

It’s so hard to see that there is a boat to rescue you and an end to that tunnel. It’s hard to see that the sun is shining and you take a look around and you notice that you were never really alone. You were being carried by your family, friends, and an amazing God who loves you.

And then you have that one annoying friend that won’t stop saying things like, “You’re so strong and brave.” and “I love you so much!” and “You’re going to make it through this.” And you’ll be like, “GAH JUST LEAVE ME ALONE.”, but she won’t and you’ll love her anyway, right? RIGHT? Because it’s all true. All of it.

Keep fighting. Keep living. Keep being you. And if being you from now on is being a mess, well then I’ll love you anyway. Although, I pray it’s not always a mess for your sake…but you know what I mean.  And also, let’s go to the beach on a day trip asap and hold hands while we put our feet in an ocean that isn’t trying to pull us under, deal?

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xo
Tab
like/share/comment/fund my trip to the beach

Posted in recovery, Worthy Workouts

The One Where I Make Everyone Uncomfortable

I’m writing this as I hide in a bathroom stall at the gym. Not actually using the restroom, don’t make this weird, but just….hiding?

I do that a lot, hide. It’s like if I’m hiding in the bathroom, then I’m untouchable. You can’t interrupt me because I’m possibly using the restroom, thus making me free to do whatever I want, unbothered.

If you have met me, you know that I’m loud and obnoxious. I talk to strangers in line because I’m bored and I tend to make friends wherever I go. But the only way I can survive that part of my personality is to have a place to runaway to. A place where I can take deep breaths and space out for a little while. I need to be able to just ….be. Not in a way where I relax while getting a pedicure or a massage, no that’s not it at all. I need to be alone in bed, or in a bathroom, or my car parked in a grocery store parking lot and I need to just be able to sit there and just be. I need to take that time to convince myself that it’s time to go back out into the world and be a person again. That I can’t waste my life away hiding, but that it’s okay to hide for just a little while.

My ability to mentally check out of life so easy became a big topic of discussion at my ED recovery. That’s what I do when I binge, I check out. A lot of the time I truly don’t even realize what I’m doing until it’s already been done. Those kind of binges come late at night and they usually come after I’ve had to be a person too much that day. I didn’t have time during the day to hide in a bathroom and just be, so by the time the chance comes to do so, my mind already checked out without me and I’m doing things that damage me.

I’m not sure why I’m sharing this. I was just on the treadmill doing my thaaang and got this overwhelming need to just go shut myself in a bathroom stall. So here I am.

XO

Tab

Posted in recovery

Tell My Husband I Deserve Presents.

Tonight is a special night, y’all. A night in which I try to convince my husband that I deserve presents because I FINISHED MY EATING DISORDER RECOVERY PROGRAM. It went something like this:

Tabitha: Are you proud of me?
Hubs: YES!
Kiddo: YAY!
Tabitha: What’s my prize?
Hubs: A book from Half-Price.
Tabitha: How about 5 books from Amazon?
Kiddo: YES! Mommy, you can have five books.
Hubs: No. And he doesn’t get a vote, he has no money.
Kiddo: I have pennies in my piggy bank!
Tabitha: YEAH! He has money in his piggy bank and he says I can.
Hubs: Not five.
Tabitha: FINE. TWO.
Hubs: UUUUGGGHHHHH
Tabitha: That’s a yes. OKAY BYE. *hangs up*

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But in all seriousness, this was 2 of the hardest months ever for me. I had to finally accept that I’ve had an eating disorder for 26 years and I can’t ignore it anymore. I still struggle a lot and it’s frustrating to know that recovery isn’t ending today. I wish this bracelet meant that it just goes away after I click “publish” on this blog, but it doesn’t. What it does mean though, is that I am strong and courageous. I asked for help when I didn’t want to. I literally kicked and screamed my way through this program, but I left feeling a little bit better.

If you’re struggling with anything, not just an eating disorder, remember that it is okay to ask for help. It is okay to admit that you can’t do this alone, we weren’t made to face the world alone. Be strong and courageous.

xo
Tab

ps. Feel free to like/share/comment/give me money to buy books. ❤