Monday, July 16, 2012

A new journey (or a start over)

This blog post is personal and a little scary to write because it will take me back to some dark times, but I feel it is important for myself to blog it and put this out there as to intercept something before it starts.

Okay so I've recently talked about my body image struggles and how I just want to feel bad about myself and so I've decided maybe it's time that I can do something about it and seriously talk about it without having eating disorder talk in my head.

So first let me start at the beginning for those of you who don't know my story and forgive me if my thoughts are scattered.

I grew up dancing, and I loved it.  It was such a huge part of me and I was able to have so many amazing experiences dancing.  I traveled the world extensively and met so many amazing people from various countries.

I also have always been very outgoing and social.  Part of my social and outgoing nature is being a people pleaser as well as making sure I am liked by everyone.  It is also so very important to me to impress people and to become better each day at something then I was the day before.
I can't tell you how extremely important it is for me to be excepted and well liked.  This is a very core personality trait.

Now that you know this I can start my story.

As I said I grew up dancing and I think I was good at it.
Now I am 4 '11 which for a dancer isn't tall...heck for not a dancer it isn't tall.  So what I'm short.  That I've always been comfortable with and have excepted it.  No big deal.
However not everyone excepts that as a dancer.
There were many instances in my life that I was told that I was the "awesome chubby dancer" or "we won't take anyone larger then you" or "we need to remember to add an inch to Kandis' measurements because she always gains weight." or "because your daughter is short, her weight really show's" the last one was a reason I didn't make my PUBLIC high schools drill team.
The stories go on and on.  And I finally decided that I didn't want to not be able to do something because of my weight, or be talked about poorly because of my weight.  This is when I started a battle with bulimia.
After I met my husband he filled a hole in my soul that had been torn open by these comments.  And the eating disorder behaviors 'went' away, albeit temporary.
After I had my Elle I remember seeing pictures of me from her 1st birthday and I was so embarrassed.  How had I let myself get like this.
So I started exercising and eating well.  I was losing weight and people noticed.  People were commenting all the time on how good I looked.  It felt so good.  So I had to step up my game.  It seemed that I only ever heard comments in my life about my weight.  Good or bad.  This obviously wasn't the truth, but to me it's what I saw.
After a few months of doing well I hit a wall and couldn't go any further.  So needless to say I fell back into eating disorder patterns.  It got really bad.  So bad that I couldn't stop.
I was confronted by a friend and forced to get help.
I was extremely sick but didn't realize how sick I was.
I was in outpatient treatment for 4 years.
At year 3 of treatment I realized that I wanted to get better and I started taking treatment serious and really working on getting healthy mentally.
It has been  2 years 4 months and 28 days since I've purged last!
The last two years have been hard.
I have had moments where I have really thought about going back to purging.
I have had moments when I have hated myself so bad.

I used to have an extremely hard time hearing anyone talk about food or weight.
I would get extremely uncomfortable.  Especially in church.  I think church is the worst.  The women always are talking about weight and numbers and "oh I was so bad last night, I had a piece of cake."  I want to smack them.  But I am now in a place where the talk and the numbers don't bother me as long as they are healthy talk.

For a long time I had asked my family to never mention calories, or weight around me because it was a trigger for me.  It no longer is.

However now I am at a place where I am extremely unhappy with myself.  You see I have avoided the scale for 5 years.  I don't know what I weighed before I had Ava or after I had Ava.
As I have been in recovery I have had to learn that foods aren't bad, but we can make bad choices on how much we eat.  Whereas before there were bad foods.
Learning this I have gained a lot of weight.  I got on the scale finally after so long and I am pretty sure I have never weighed this much in my life.
I am not happy with this.
So I have decided to do something about it.
BUT I have tried to do something about it before and look where that got me.
So knowing my personality and knowing that I am a people pleaser I thought that I would start a challenge for fellow photographers.  There's so many of us who hide behind our cameras because we are ashamed of our bodies.  I am tired of this.
I knew if I started a challenge for others that I would have to follow through. (part of my personality, I can't back out).  So that is what I have done.

So I am on a path to a healthy life.  Now I don't care if I'm thin, I just want to be happy.  I don't look at this as a diet, but a life style change.

And now the reason I am posting this on my blog is not for a "hey look at what I am doing" but for a reason for me to be 'in check'.  If I put it out there to others that I am on this path I now have a reason not to revert to eating disorder behaviors because now I feel like everyone will know.

With that wish me luck.  I might have days that I fail, but it's okay I think I can do this.


Sara said...

Kandis, I thank you for deciding to start this challenge. I feel the same as everyone else in this group. I appreciate you being strong and telling your story. I am glad that you are on your way to a "Happier" place. I have enjoyed reading all of the many comments on facebook.

The Barnum Family said...

Your challenge sounds like a great idea! Having gained and lost the same 50-70 pounds three times in my life, I know how hard it can be. I also know that it is much easier when you have someone doing it with you and you are supporting each other. You have the right attitude in that you are doing this to be healthy and to be happier, not to be 'skinny'. You will have good days and you will have really tough days and you will have weeks where you gain a few pounds even though you were doing everything right. Just focus on the positive healthy behaviors like choosing healthy foods, tracking, and exercising and in the long run, you'll reach your goals.
Keep us all updated. It will be great to see your progress!