Someone asked me just now, “Does it get better?” and I wanted to share my response:
In a way. It gets easier. What once was such a fervent screaming in your head dies down into an echo and I think the goal is that that fades away once you immerse yourself into your life again.
It doesn’t go away all of a sudden and I sometimes feel like I’m still so stuck but time really does change things and you learn how to deal with the little bits of life you’ve avoided.
It reminds me of the quote by C.S. Lewis that says, “Isn’t it funny how day by day nothing changes but when you look back, everything is different…”
That’s how it was and still is for me. Now the calories in a cough drop don’t cause me to go into a hysterical fit but that doesn’t mean that I don’t have break downs about how scary real life is.
It’s not that I have no worries now it’s just that they’re different. They’re real life worries but I think that shows growth. So, to answer your question yes, yes it does get better.
Use your freak out as motivation! I hope you see this before tomorrow! Good luck! You can always message me :-)
Hang in there. It is astonishing how short a time it can take for very wonderful things to happen.
Love what you do. There’s always going to be someone else who’s smarter than you, but there’s no substitute for passion. People who are passionate always work the hardest, and that sets them apart.
I always hated not knowing how long I was going to be in treatment for. I like making plans, and the whole “not knowing” thing drove me crazy. I really think treatment facilities could do a much better job of communicating with patients regarding their time in treatment— verbalizing goals and whatnot.
The nutritionist in each house has a big binder full of menus from different restaurants from the area. Once a week, a girl is selected to pick the restaurant (but it’s done in secret and no one knows unless the girl tells someone). While I was there, we went to Chipotle, a Thai restaurant, and Chili’s. Dining out was always my favorite meal of the week because you got to eat it away from the center and you get to pick what you want to eat. You don’t have to finish all of your meal (which makes sense, because restaurant portions are traditionally larger than normal, everyday meals), and you can check in with an RC to see how you’re doing. There’s a lot of freedom surrounding dining out, and that’s why I liked it so much.
I can’t think of anything else specifically to tell you. On Saturday (or maybe it’s Sunday) mornings, you get to go to Starbucks, which is fun. The weekends are the highlight of the week.
Sundays are “sandwich” lunch. Basically, everyone eats peanut butter and jelly sandwiches. Which is quite the conundrum if you don’t like peanut butter (like myself). I’m definitely in the minority on that one though, most everyone else was fine with it. And I managed to choke down a few sandwiches, I just didn’t enjoy it.
If I don’t talk with you before your admission, GOOD LUCK! Let me know how everything goes. You can always come off anon if you want. I don’t bite, I promise!
I think the last thing you should worry about is whether the food is “healthy and wholesome.” I’m not saying that eating a balanced diet is unimportant, I just don’t think you should obsess over it. You have very limited interaction with the food for the most part— you are only given options at snack time and some breakfast options. But it really doesn’t matter because white is not better or worse than wheat. Food is food and it all goes to the same place. It won’t hurt you, whatever they feed you. They’re looking out for you, just try to relax. It’ll be okay. You can’t obsess about food your whole life— there are WAY better things to obsess about than food. At OPC, you’ll get a nice variety of food.
I hope you don’t take offense to that, but it’s true. I really just want you to relinquish the control the eating disorder has over you and begin to enjoy life. Because it’s so amazing once you’re recovered.
The breakfasts DO rotate on a weekly basis, but it’s not the same thing, day after day after day. This was the menu from when I was there:
Monday: English Muffins
Friday: Breakfast Sandwich
Saturday: Surprise Breakfast
You can add variety to this menu by trying different fruits and “extras.” Maybe have peanut butter with your bagel instead of cream cheese. Have a pear instead of a banana. There are a ton of combinations to choose from, so experiment if you get bored.
Lunches and dinners were more varied, probably because they’re prepared by a chef. I don’t remember repeating any meals. They were all delicious though.
The girls weren’t judge-y like that. I mean, they were catty as hell and dry dramatic, but they never really “judged” anyone for their weight. They were very accepting though. Like I said, they were very nice. I just don’t do well with being surrounded by that much estrogen 24/7.
On my first day, I was given a normally portioned meals, like what most other girls were eating. I didn’t see a nutritionist my first day though, so i’m not sure how that will impact your plan. But my meals looked very similar to meals that were portioned for me in IOP/Canopy Cove— if you’ve had an outpatient meal plan, look at that, because it will give you an idea as to what to expect.
When I was at OPC, I had just turned 20 and I was STILL the second-youngest resident! That was partially why I didn’t feel like I could connect with any of the other girls. Most of them had finished school and had careers; some of them even had their own families. Not only were we in different recovery mindsets, but we were in very different places in life. All of the girls were very nice— I just didn’t mesh very well with them.
and i dont have a problem eating cause i rarely ever feel too full which is kinda ironic, im usually hungry i just unfortunately ignore the pains. so do they give you a decent amount of food? or did you constantly feel hungry?
Serving size really depends on each individual resident. i was hungry a lot of the time, but not because they weren’t feeding me enough (well, besides those few random meals where my portion size was decreased because of the crazy dietician from the other house who didn’t listen to me). My body was just incredibly busy repairing and re-nourishing itself that it needed A LOT of fuel. If you’re hungry, ask for more food. They’ll be more than willing to accommodate you (to an extent— they watch you to make sure that you aren’t bingeing and whatnot). Talk with your dietician about the situation. Nothing is accomplished unless you communicate with your team.
I know going to treatment is overwhelming, but it’s going to be okay. You’ll be there in a few days and then you can get down to business. You’ll settle into a routine and hopefully begin the process of recovery. I think you’re really determined, and that attitude is your biggest weapon.
GOOD LUCK ON MONDAY! LET ME KNOW HOW EVERYTHING GOES :-)