Angela and I

Angela and I

Sunday, November 20, 2016

Random Thanks

It's that time of year again folks.  Thanksgiving is coming up and before we know it it will be December.  This week my Mom is coming to town to celebrate the holiday with me and I couldn't be more excited.  I definitely need some Mom time, especially since the world is getting more and more like an Onion article every single day.  But before I write a post about the big, obvious things I am grateful for, I want to write one about the little, awesome things.  I think they're just as important.

I am thankful for books shared between friends.

I am thankful for a pair of jeans that fit me and that I like to wear.

I am thankful for finding friends in people who I've known for years, connecting over something we never knew we shared until a few months ago.

I am thankful for the smiles and laughs shared between piano and uke players this weekend.

I am thankful for the feeling of laughing so hard you forget to breathe.

I am thankful for coffee.

I am thankful for the surreal feeling of seeing 50 kids all wearing a shirt you designed for the musical you wrote.

I am thankful for my favorite songs and the buzz they put inside my body.

I am thankful for group text messages.

I am thankful for feeling happy for no reason...okay that's silly.  I have plenty of reasons.

I hope you have a wonderful week, my friends!  I am thankful for all of you.

Peace, Love, and Mega-mixes

Monday, November 14, 2016

The feelings are so real to her....

This evening I got all hunkered down at my neighborhood Starbucks, coffee beside me, writing playlist blasting in my ears, with every intention to knock out about two chapters of the novel I'm working on for NaNoWriMo.  BUT ALAS, sometimes it's hard for me to write fiction when there is stuff happening in my actual life that I need to bleed out onto paper (or computer screen, I suppose).  These past few days I can't even tell you how many times I have been told, both in person and on the internet, both individually and collectively, that I (or we) need to calm down, shut up, and stop being afraid. These statements grate on the very core of my being, and I'll tell you why.

A few years ago, when I was first starting treatment, my therapist paused our conversation to gently direct my attention to the fact that after every painful thing I told her, I would laugh.  Even if tears were streaming down my face, I would chuckle.  I would talk about truly traumatizing things -- mainly losing my father, grandfather, and other grandfather in the span of a month, and how that undoubtedly led to my desperate need for control -- and for whatever reason I would just laugh.  She looked me straight in the eye and told me that this was a safe room, and a place that I didn't need to mask my emotions in order to prove to the world that I was okay.  It took me months to unlearn this behavior. Mainly because, when you're deeply entrenched in anorexia, you lose the ability to feel almost anything.  Sure, I wasn't truly happy, but I also wasn't ever truly sad.  Or angry, or disappointed, or hopeful, or agitated.  I just simply was.  It was during that time that I learned how to feel all of those things again, and let me tell you, it was overwhelming.  Imagine nearly five years of backed up emotions rushing towards the forefront of your being all at once.  It was a LOT to deal with.  I remember one day during this period of time a college friend I wasn't even particularly close with showed up at my work and I literally sobbed my eyes out in the bathroom.

Since then, my emotions have mellowed out.  I still feel things pretty deeply, but it's nothing compared to those first few months that I finally allowed them into my life again.  It was hard work letting myself be angry, letting myself be sad, letting myself be scared.  I am the first to say that I am truly grateful for my time in recovery, and I wouldn't go back and live a life in which I never got sick.  It made me who I am and definitely made me a better person today.  It allowed me to see the importance of allowing yourself to feel every emotion you experience, sit with it, and use it.  Something productive can come from every. single. feeling.  Don't you dare tell another human being how to feel, or to just stop feeling a certain way.  Don't you dare tell me to calm down, or to not be angry because of what is happening in the world.  And if someone has been directing this kind of sentiment towards you, I will fight for you.  I will defend you.  I will fight until I have no more breath in my body.  I am with you every step of the way.

Peace, Love, and Nasty Women,
KT <33

Saturday, November 12, 2016

Happy Places

Hi Friends!  How are you all doing?  I know I've gone through a whole range of emotions the past few days. My world has been a tense, confusing place due to...ahem...recent events.  I was lucky enough to spend the night of the election with three of my closest friends, but that doesn't mean I slept more than three hours or that I didn't sob my eyes out the following morning.  But you know me.  I'm a little sensitive.

Which brings me to the point of this post.  These past few days I've been consciously making the effort to put myself in my happy places.  Places where nothing, no bit of news, no political candidate, and no fear can touch me.   I'm not saying that I shut out the world and run away from the problems, quite the opposite actually.  These places I go are less of a fortress and more of a suit of armor.  They allow me to go through life ready to face whatever challenges I, or rather we, face.

My number one happy place is music.  Whether I am playing it, or at a live show, or writing a new song, or just putting in my earbuds while walking to work.  My roommates can probably attest to the fact that there is almost always music coming from my room (sorry girls).  I don't know what I would do without it.  It has gotten me through every single thing in my life.

So what about you?  What is your happy place?  It can be something super broad (like music) or something incredibly specific (like one certain episode of one certain show, and no you cannot prove that I am referencing the Slap Bet episode of HIMYM).  There's a lyric in one of my very favorite songs that says "When you can't get through it, you can listen to it."  But you can also roller-blade through it, or garden through it, or woodwork through it, or dog cuddle through it, or hula hoop through it.  THROUGH it.  Not away from it, not against it, not hiding from it.  We can get through it.  I know we can. 

Peace, love, and thousands of pictures from concerts I've been to

Friday, November 4, 2016

Why I don't post body transformation pictures.

The other day I was mindlessly scrolling through my "On This Day" feature on Facebook and I came across pictures of me at my very lowest weight.  I actually remember weighing myself that day and I remember the number.  There's a lot during that time of my life that I do not remember, but my weight (and the caloric value of all of my safe foods) is something that is branded into my memory.  Sometimes when I come across these shocking photographs, I make a little transformation picture to keep in my phone just for myself and for people I trust to look at and share the sense of pride I feel when I see the two pictures next to each other.  I never post body transformation pictures because, while I think it's good for me to see the transformation and LOVE the "after" picture way more than the "before", I don't think showing the world the bag of bones I was 4 years ago is productive in any way.

My "after", in the words of Sean Ryan Paris - "Sunshine and Happy and Hanson!" 

I will happily post transformation pictures of my hair, or my hands, or even my face.  But my body is off limits.  One of my worst fears is for someone out there will somehow get a hold of a sick picture and yearn for that body.  That terrifies me.  I would rather someone see the fact that my hair grew back or that my cheeks filled out and I got the life back in my eyes. I would rather someone ask me what the main difference is and see happy tears fill my eyes while I say "well number one I didn't die" (still not really sure how I survived it) "but beyond that I don't have an ever present chill in my bones and I don't have hair growing on my lower back in my body's last ditch effort to stay alive."  I don't need to remind the world how much my body has changed. You learn so much when you recover...definitely more than I ever expected to.  One thing you learn is that beauty has nothing to do with it. Nothing to do with it at all. 

Peace, love, and in an Mmmbop they're gone,
KT <33