Eating Disorder Not Otherwise Specific – warning – may trigger

A @JamesPMacDonald original drawing

This is part two of my EDNOS post.  If you like you can read part one here.

In the Spring/Summer of 2011 I was assessed and accepted into the Toronto General Hospital’s Out Patient Day Program.  September 2011 I went into full time treatment. I continued to work full time for weeks. I’d attend the program and then head to the office and work well into the night. The night time maintenance guy was sometimes my only contact at work. I’d arrive to a list of issues and a pile of orders. I tried. Some days I was very successful. In the end it was too much and I had to take full time sick benefits.

I learned many things during my time in “program”. I learned how to feel my feelings again, scary but so necessary. I learned that my perception was distorted. I learned that  what I want isn’t unreasonable, for me. I learned that I was asking too much of myself and that I was giving way too much away. I learned I couldn’t control everything. I learned that I was mean. Really mean… to myself. I learned to be kind, forgiving and more reasonable. Most importantly, I learned how to eat, again and I learned to stop resorting to purging when I started to feel.

I was afraid that  terrible things would happen. Many things did happen. I ate 3 balanced meals a day plus 2 snacks. I shared. I laughed. I cried. I made some really good friends. My hair grew, a lot. I didn’t exercise the whole time I was there. I coped. The number on the scale went up. I coped.

The people in my life still loved me, respected me and wanted to hang out with me.

There’s still work to do and there are still hard days but I’m so much better than I was. I spent almost 6 months in treatment. Recovery didn’t happen over night. I’ve been out of treatment for just over a year and I still use the tools I was given there. I still occasionally need to “check in” with someone, somewhere. I’m ok with that. I don’t have to do this all by myself.

February is Mental Health Month and today Bell will donate 5¢ more to help fund mental health initiatives across Canada. Include #BellLetsTalk in tweets today!


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