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January 29, 2006

Tough Days

It's been a rough week.
It seems like everything just sort of hit me at once. Wednesday and Thursday were probably the worst two days I've had since I've been here. Just a lot of negative thinking, self-doubt, negative body image, and missing the familiarity of home and the life that I was used to. While there's a part of me that wants to give this all up and just go home, there's another part of me that knows I need to be here.

Pete is coming up to visit the second weekend in February-- and it seems so incredibly far away at this point. I'm trying to stay positive about everything, but it's hard. I try not to isolate, or when I do realize I'm doing it--- I try to force myself to be around other people, even if it's just watching a movie or going for a walk with someone. I think part of the negative body image comes not only from the fact that I'm eating on a more regular basis, but that I'm also not purging (most of the time) and I haven't been to a gym since I got here. I've been walking a LOT, but to me--- walking isn't a workout. It is for other people, but just not for me. Especially when I'm used to spending several hours at the gym nearly every day. Even if I'm not in an obsessive mode about the gym, when I don't run for a couple of days, then I feel even worse about myself, and just feel lazy and blah blah blah. I think I'm going to join a gym here. They don't restrict that at all, and the YMCA has month-to-month memberships for about $27. I can put my gym membership at home on suspension for a few months until I get back, and just replace it with a membership up here.

I NEED to run. It's not even because of a calorie-burning mindset. I just need to be out and active and doing something. And it's far too icy here to attempt to run outside. It's hard enough just walking.

We all went out last night, which was fun. We spent the evening drinking at a bar not too far from the house. We had planned on going out to one of the dance clubs, but the lines were sooooo long. After standing in line for about 35 minutes or so, in sub-zero temperature, we gave up and went to the bar next door. At least it was inside. When we finally left that place, the line was STILL just as long as when we'd tried getting into the club earlier.

I dunno..... last week was just a really bad week. I skipped a couple of group sessions, and a couple of my individual sessions, solely for the purpose that I didn't feel like talking to anyone or being around anyone. I also cut on Wednesday night, which pissed me off, cause I told myself I wasn't going to do that here. Screwed that one up too. And then I guess it was like an excuse to do it again, since I'd already fucked up. I cut last night. I dunno---- just too many things going through my head and not sure how to figure it all out. That's part of the reason I have such a hard time talking in session about me, or what I think or how I feel or whatever, because I can't explain to myself. So if I can't even do that, how am I supposed to try and explain it to someone else?

And I guess I have this unrealistic expectation/standard for myself that I am only allowed to move forward, and not have any bad days. And I know it's totally impossible for that to happen, cause everyone is going to screw up now and then-- but yet, for myself, I expect perfection. And so then I feel bad admitting that I need help or that it's a bad day or that I'm struggling, cause I feel like I don't deserve to ask for it. I know that everyone here is available at any point in time should I need to talk, but I can't bring myself to do it.That's one of my "homework" assignments with Val and Jamie (and Judy, for that matter). Asking for help when I need it, and using the resources available here. I don't EVER ask for help. I'm not saying that as and excuse... just that I don't even do it.

Half of me wants to go back home and go back to what I've been used to and to what I know. But I know I need to be here right now, even when my own mind tries to convince me differently. Most of that comes from the negative body image and feeling like I've somehow magically gained about 50 pounds since I've been here--- which is totally irrational. And yet, every time I look in the mirror--- I only see myself getting bigger and bigger. It doesn't matter what reality is, cause I don't see it. Don't believe it. And so then I find myself ready to say "ficl it all". If I'm going to just keep gaining weight day after day..... then I want to go home NOW. Fuck "health" if it means I'm going to be fat. And even as I write that--- I know I haven't gained weight. If I have-- it's an insignificant amount and probably just water weight at that. Or maybe this is just me trying to convince myself differently. I don't know. It's so damn confusing and I hate it. I hate the constant fight in my head over every single thing I do.

I had my eyebrow pierced yesterday. I think I'll end up getting my nose pierced as well. Just something small and not REAL noticeable. A small diamond or or silver ball. But no rings or anything. When Pete comes up, I'm getting my tattoos. I am trying to decide if I want anything other than the words. I might design it myself, or I may have them do it. Sara said that Lee is really good, and that's who did her tattoo last time she was IP here. But the guy who did my piercing yesterday was really good, and he does tattoos as well. So I may go with hime instead. Obviously, they're all good at it--- or else people wouldn't go there. And he had the rest of the afternoon (after me) filled up with tattoo appointments.
Either way-- I'm definitely getting it done before I leave.

I think I'm gonna head out to Blockbuster with a couple of the girls. S and I rented three movies yesterday, but they've already been watched a couple of times since then. At least we only have about 3/4 of a day left to get through before tomorrow morning. That helps. The weekends get really lons, since there are no "formal" programs here on the weekends, which leaves a LOT of time to fill up. I'm so not used to that, and you con only distract yourself for so long......

Posted by Wendy at 11:34 AM | Comments (2)

January 22, 2006

Westwind Update

I'm getting into the routine of waking up about 8:10 a.m. and heading over to the other house for group therapy. Some days though, I'm flying out of bed at about 20 or 25 after, throwing on a hat and my coat and running out the door. The cold air hits and definitely wakes ya up! I've only slept through one morning group since I've been here, and that was due to the fact I'd had almost no sleep for two or three days in a row. Once I finally was able to sleep, I was OUT.

I like how unrestrictive things are here, but I also like the constancy and familiarity of the schedule during the week. It's the weekends that are hardest to tolerate. So much free time. Then again, that's one off the things I need to work on.... just BEING for awhile. Being able to sit still for a few moments at a time and not feel the need to jump up and do something. I've gotten quite well at multi-tasking over the years, but it's not necessarily beneficial. Especially when you do it ALL the time.

I'm looking forward to Pete coming up in February. It gives me something to look forward to. I'm also getting two new tattoos when he comes up. I don't remember if I've already posted about the tattoos, and I don't feel liike going back and looking through past messages.

I emailed mom last night, to see if she would order "The Anorexia Workbook" and "The Bulimia Workbook" for me, and have them sent here. I'm sooooo NOT used to asking for things.... I always feel too guilty for it. But she was happy that I'd even asked int he first place, so she's sending those up. I need something else to do during the day (and especially the weekends) when I have free time. It's easy to lose my focus and WHy I am here, when I only think about things during my group therapy times or individual therapy times. I figured having those workbooks to work on would help. Bryan says the bulimia workbook is the better of the two, because it is based on CBT (cognitive Behavioural Therapy), where the anorexia workbook is a bit of a different approach--- goal setting, etc. But, I figured I can use both of them.

Gram has asked a couple of times if there's anything I want or need. Said just to let her know. I haven't been able to bring myself to do it. I feel too bad about asking for things. Especially when right nnow-- it's really just material things... like art stuff, or books, or $$ for going out. Things I don't really NEED, but would use....... ugh....

i think we're going to go out and get a movie tonight. Just veg for the evening. A arrived today, so she's just now getting settled in and stuff, and I figured it might make things easier for her if we all just sorta stayed in tonight and watched a movie and got to know each other a bit. That'll at least make tomorrow go better for her, since she'll know a little bit about us before heading into group tomorrow morning.

I haven't cut since i've been here, but I've purged a few times. and I know I shouldn't have, cause I told myself I wasn't going to--- but it's thhe whole solid food thing. If it's soft foods, or liquid, I can tolerate it, both physically and mentally--- but when it's solid foods, the anxiety level skyrockets and I just feel uncomfortable physically. Katherine andI decided we were going to plan our 'meals' for each day, after the morning group. Most of the time, I'll stand there in the kitchen, overwhelmed by having to make a choice, and then the anxiety level rises, and I say "fuck it" and just don't eat.

But the longer I do that, the longer I'm going to be here. I'm already wondering if 2 months is long enough. I'm about to head into my 3rd week here, and I know I've still got a LONG way to go. this didn't start overnight, but on some level, I think I'm expecting it to just go away overnight. And I know that's not possible.

One day at a time, right? (Sometimes, it's more like one MINUTE at a time.)

Posted by Wendy at 11:55 AM | Comments (0)

January 19, 2006


I am currently in Brandon, MB Canada, at Westwind-- an eating disorders treatment center. I have been here since last monday (9th). I have internet access here, but on a limited basis-- depending on when my group and individual therapy sessions are, meetings with the nutritionist, etc.

I am keeping my xanga site updated but, only somewhat sporadically-- as it all depends on how much time I have. is the address there. I will work on keeping this one updated as well-- as this is the site that not too many people know about, and sometimes I find myself censoring things on the other site, only because I know there are certain family members who have the address to the xanga site... and well..... some things--- I really don't want them to know.

I am doing ok..... just getting used to the routine of things and the fact that I am here. I haven't cut since I've been here--- which is a good thing, and have only purged a couple of times. It's hard to go from purging everything you happen to eat, to actually eating at fairly normal times and NOT purging on top of it. the anxiety skyrockets after meals....and they're not even normal meals. I've had 1/2 c. cottage cheese for dinner each night and that's it. This week, I've consumed a bit more, and the anxiety about that is overwhelming at times. I go on a lot of walks here-- espeically when I can't sleep.

Westwind is soooooooo not restrictive in the least. No locked bathrooms or anything, and you don't HAVe to attend meals or even group sessions---but it-- obviously-- is encouraged.

anyhow-- I gotta go.. Almost time for group.
Westwind's website is I'll be here at least the next two months if not longer, so I'll keep this updated when I can.

Posted by Wendy at 1:29 PM | Comments (1)

January 4, 2006

Down to the Final Days

The last week has flown by so incredibly fast. I question myself on a near-hourly basis as to whether or not making the decision to go inpatient was the right decision. Part of me knows it is... but at the same time--- there's this other side that's so damn convincing and so much louder, so much stronger than i am. i've been on an emotional rollercoaster this entire last week. If I'm not completely numb-- no thoughts, no feelings in either direction-- then i'm in a state of anxiety and overwhelmed by even the simplest of tasks.

i have barely started packing and I leave Friday morning. This Friday. Like in two-days-Friday. The only thing i have even semi-ready to pack up in the car is my art stuff... my paints and brushes, canvases and clay. Sketchbooks and pencils and watercolors and paper. Other than downloading some new songs onto my MP3, that's as far as i've gotten. Problem is, i don't even know where to start. i'll attempt to get going with it-- and the idea of it is overwhelming. it's not so much the idea of packing, but the fact that it's for 2 months. or 3- depending how things go. So far, i've avoided cutting the last two days--- but the desire has been there like crazy. And it always increases the moment i allow myself to start thinking about leaving.

Pete and i don't talk much about it. It's too hard. It hurts too much. And we're both excellent at avoidance. I laid awake last night for several hours after Pete fell asleep, trying to keep from crying. Trying to stop the thoughts long enough to fall into some state of semi-sleep. At least long enough to escape reality for a bit. So i laid there, staring at the patterns the moonlight made on the ceiling as it dodged the branches of the barren trees outside. Little fingers, little bones, reaching towards the Heavens, pleading for it to offer some sanctity from the bitter chill... the darkness outside, as though the Heavens had ears. I guess if it does-- I don't speak the language.

As hard as it is for me to admit it out loud-- yeah, i DO want to go to Westwind. i DO want this. i know that i can't keep living like this anymore. i look at other people and can only wonder what it's like to be "normal". To not have thoughts of cutting or starving or losing weight or running on my mind 24/7-- even when I sleep. My dreams aren't even immune to those thoughts these days. And there are moments I can actually say I HATE myself for all of this. For everything i've given up or missed out on or avoided over the years. I think of the friends who've walked away, or the one's that I have walked away from-- all because of my neurotic behavior that no one ever understood-- even myself, most of the time.

i'm still in a bit of disbelief over just how many people are supportive of me in this. It's always been one of those unspoken things--- like everyone knew what was going on.... they saw it. They knew. And no one said a thing. And now-- it seems that's all anyone wants to talk about..... but it's not necessarily in a negative sort of way. My old therapist from Lincoln sent me a card---- said something about making this the greatest journey of my life.. Riss's email saying how much she hated watching me deal with it all through high school... college.... how she's proud of what i'm doing and that she's always there for me... even if we have drifted apart a bit over the last few years. Birdie's phone calls lately.... Nic, Kelli, Alyssa. My supervisors at work. i told them Monday that i was leaving for awhile. Told them where i was going and why. Surprisingly, one of my supervisors was all for it. Said she's struggled with the same thing for years.....though she's past it for the most part, even though it does creep up now and again. At least i know one of them 'gets it' in a first-hand experience sort of way. They offered to hold my job for me until i get back-- if i wanted it. Said i'm (supposedly) one of their best employees and they'd hate to lose me, and to just give them a call when i get back and i'm ready to return to work. Gave me FMLA papers to fill out-- even though-- by law-- they don't have to hold my position, since i haven't yet been there a year.

Everyone on my xanga journal ( has been incredibly supportive. Former co-workers.... it's mind-boggling. ..... even my parents... and grandparents are all for it. My grandma knows how much my art means to me.... bought me a whole art set in this awesome wooden box thing with trays of paints and pencils, charcoals and watercolors, colored pencils, canvas, sketchbooks...... to take with me to Canada. Offered to pay for Pete to come up to Manitoba and visit a couple of times while I'm gone. Is paying for our gas and hotel costs getting up there and back. Where is all this coming from??? Half of me says just to accept it all and be grateful for it (which i am), but the other half is quite overwhelmed by everything.

Pete and i spent the evening down in Lincoln at my grandparents' house. My grandma and i talked a bit about Westwind (general, nothing specific) and downed a bottle and a half of Korbel Champagne. Goes down rather well on an empty stomach, if ya ask me. hehehehe. Pete helped my grandpa install a new microwave. Odd. Very Odd. It was a good evening.... just odd. Ok.. not odd.. .just out of the ordinary.

My only relief right now in all of this came today in my email inbox. It's from this girl in Michigan, Caitlin, who ran across a post i'd made on Westwinds' group message board. She apparently is going to be there when I am. She arrives on the 20th. Said she's talked to two other girls rather frequently, who are residents there now. Amanda and Kath-- i think were the names. It's somewhat of a relief to know that she'll be going as well, that she's just as terrified as i am, and that she too-- is freaking out about the whole 'not sick enough to be there' thing. Sick enough.... small enough.... same thing. Whatever. She said the other two are closer to 'normal' weight.... and that she's about 5'11 and in the 140's. And I'm sitting here trying to figure out the height/weight ratio in comparison to my own, to see if she is smaller than me. (and invariably--- the answer is always yes.... no matter how much convincing one tries to do. ugh. i suck.

Went to the DMV today to get my driver's license changed... new last name.... Saw this incredibly tall, incredibly anorexic girl walking down the hallway. Turned to Alyssa and said-- "yup... she's definitely anorexic." Alyssa asked if we had little radars for that sort of thing. "yeah... something like that." You could see perfect definition of her hipbones at the top of her jeans (she had a shirt on that hit right at the waist, so when she walked you could see it). My first and instant reaction was undeniable jealousy. I sooooooooo would LOVE to look like she did. I really would. Bones. Nothing but bones.

I find it interesting how over the last couple of years, my idea of what is thin has drastically changed. I look back at pictures or images or whatever that *used to* be "triggering" and wonder what the hell I was thinking. I wonder why I would have thought of a given person/model/actress/whoever as thin. What used to be thin is now fat, and what is now considered thin is emaciation. Bones. Nothing more. And somewhere along the way--- that became the goal. Emaciation became my (twisted/warped/sick) idea of beauty. That became my idea of "good enough".
And this is gonna sound fucking psycho, but i can actually look at pictures of holocaust victims, knowing the torture and devestation they endured, the pure agony... the HELL they went through... and be jealous of many of them for how emaciated they became. How fucking sick is that?

It's 3:40 a.m. and i'm still wide awake. I need to stop thinking right now.......

Posted by Wendy at 3:40 AM | Comments (2)