Do what feels right – that’s the expectation of what “should” be. Just do what feels right and you won’t have to worry about whether or not it’s normal, because it will be right for you. You don’t have to worry about your eating habits being normal or whether or not you’re making the right choices, because it will be right for you. Yes, in a perfect world, I agree – but for people like me, like us, doing what feels right is a loaded question.
Doing what is right is one thing, but doing what feels right in the moment might be restricting calories, drinking too much, exercising without compensation. Doing what feels right is loaded because it isn’t just me in there. When the me parts of me are weak or tired or vulnerable or beaten-up, doing what feels right is what quiets down the blackness. Doing what feels right in these circumstances, doing what feels right is about giving in to the blackness, making the blackness feel right.
And this incorrectly suggests some sort of cognition on my part to give in – not in the fucking slightest. Very often the only way I know I’ve done the right thing for the blackness and not for me is through others, through the eyes and ears and distance of others. When it’s just me, it feels simply like I’m doing what’s right. I would say that all but a handful of times, I believed I was doing what was right for me, not for the blackness (there have been those times, those few and far between times when things are tough that I have given in, because the alternative is darker than even the blackness). That’s the tragic part of this thing, this disease, this fucked-up-ness – it confuses the me parts of me, makes me believe I am serving me; when in reality, I am bowing down to the almighty poison inside.
I want to feel happy, content, quiet, at peace. The me version of me is that, holding hands with the her version of her, walking the dog to the door where the cats greet us with ever-present, unconditional love. With the blackness, that can happen. With the tools we’ve accumulated and the redrawing of the lines to reclaim healthy and find a balance of vivid, that can happen. With the blackness this strong, it can’t.
So again, one day at a time. Be strong and brave and smart enough – the Winnie the Pooh version of the serenity prayer. Be strong and brave and smart enough, believing that I can do what’s right for the me version of me, even if I’m not there yet – still on the path of recovery though.