So I have debated and contemplated writing this post for a very long time.

A recovery update post.

I usually keep things light on the blog and even though I still have my ups and downs, I like to focus more on the ups and the positives. Because to me that is what recovery is about, staying positive, and not focusing on negatives that still occasionally happen.

With it being the holiday season and with the abundance of all the extra goodies that seem to come into all of our lives, I know this is a time where a lot of us recovering from eating disorders have a hard time. We desperately want to be “normal”, eat, indulge and not have the guilt that we have lived with for so long when we allow ourselves to enjoy food, all food.

If you regularly follow the blog or follow me on Instagram and Twitter you know I have been bombarded with holiday goodies. My clinic is ridiculously spoiled and the amount of chocolate, cookies, cakes and candy that have been sent to us, it is impossible to say no to it all. I also find it a good chance to challenge my eating disorder and since I still am in a weight gain stage, I figured it couldn’t hurt.

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So when peppermint chocolate covered popcorn shows up, well I just can’t say no to that.

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And since a lot of our clients know we are addicted to Starbucks (it doesn’t help that our clinic is connected to a Starbucks) the cranberry bliss bar gift box that got dropped off, which even though I am not a fan of their new baked goods, these turned out to be absolutely amazing, well I just had to help myself to a piece.

And yes I enjoy and savor every bite, but I would be lying to say that I eat these 100% guilt free.

I know what I am doing is completely normal. I watch my whole clinic do the exact same thing, and guess what, they haven’t gained 10lbs overnight, nor have I.

And honestly, when something that looks this delicious gets delivered…

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There was no way I wasn’t having a piece of this chocolate cake goodness.

This one was worth every single bite and I was so glad I didn’t say no to a slice.

I could have listened to my eating disorder thoughts of “you don’t need this” and rewarded myself for resisting and not having a piece, but honestly, I wanted a piece. So in reality I should reward myself for actually listening to what I really wanted, honoring it, and not feeling guilty for it.

Eating disorders tell us this is wrong. We should take pride in saying no to “unhealthy” “bad” foods, but really no food is good or bad. It’s just food.

So when later in the same day when more deliciousness was delivered…

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I joined in the immediate opening of a brownie with my co-workers and took some extra’s to take home.

Again, I could have said I didn’t want any, I didn’t need any, but then again in reality, how could I not want some.

It’s really hard not to take advantage of some of the treats that get delivered. They are items that I would never buy on my own.

But I’m telling you, for someone recovering from an eating disorder it’s such a double edge sword.

In order to seem normal, I eat and take what the others are eating and taking, but unlike them, it’s a huge thought process for me.  I desperately want it to not be a big deal, to be able to eat a piece of chocolate and not give it more attention then it deserves, which shouldn’t be more than how good it tastes. But as I’m sure some of you can understand, we look at these foods as “bad”, “extra”, and think about the extra calories and fat we are consuming, should we cut back on our next meal, should we work out more the next day.

I thankfully am at a point to where I do not restrict anymore. Honestly, my body doesn’t let me. And by time I get home from work I am exhausted, so there is no chance I will be working out. Which in terms of my weight gain, that’s a good thing, in terms of my mental struggles, well that is a different story. Most times, by the end of my day, the extra goodies I consumed have long past my mind, but sometimes at the end of the night when I am physically full, it weighs heavy on my mind.

I think back to the piece of chocolate I didn’t necessary need or want at the time, but it was there so I had it.

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And the fact that even though I had those few extra goodies through out the day, I still ate full meals and was still just as hungry for them as when I don’t have the extra treats.

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I think how is that possible. Shouldn’t I be full? Not as hungry? Not eat as much for dinner? Well, that typically doesn’t happen.

And what my nutritionist constantly tells me, is this is my body’s way of telling me it wants the extra food, needs the extra food. And as much as this makes sense, well the eating disorder side of me doesn’t want to believe it.

I am happy to report though, that thanks to my amazing support system, I am starting to accept this may be the truth. To not freak out as much when the I continue to gain weight, because in reality, it’s what needs to happen in order for me to get healthy.

And really, it’s a pretty delicious way to get healthy…

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Happy holidays everyone. I hope you are all enjoying your extra treats guilt free, because enjoying a few extra goodies now and then is perfectly normal. It’s just one month out of the year and I am learning to enjoy it, embrace it one bite at a time.