Love Your Skin.

I want to talk about eating disorders.

Actually, I don’t want to at all. I need to.

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Recently, a family member of mine told me I needed to go on a diet. Yeah, sure, I’m curvy. Some days I may even go as far as chubby. However, I eat rather healthy—lots of fruits and vegetables, limited sweets, etc. I walk daily, exercise when I can, and do yoga a few times a week.

I don’t need to go on a diet because I’m built this way.

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My reply to this family member was, “No, this is my body and I love it.”

Yet he continued on, arguing with me that I was still a little *he lifted up his fingers and made a pinching motion as if he were pinching my fat rolls*. He argued with me about whether or not I should be satisfied with the skin I’m in.

This wasn’t some stranger on the street criticizing me. It wasn’t even some jerk of a frenemy. It was a family member.

It was these types of comments, and much worse, that led me to have dismorphic thoughts and depression before I even hit puberty, a full-blown eating disorder starting when I was thirteen, and worsening self-destructive tendencies all through high school. It was these types of comments that continue to have me dealing with deep psychological issues at the age of 25.

I’m somewhere between my eighth and ninth year in recovery from anorexia and bulimia. ED recovery is like addiction recovery—you’re never truly recovered, always working towards improving but knowing the issues will continue haunting you.

Very few people know this who weren’t there to witness it. And even those who were there to witness it averted their eyes and pretended nothing was happening. They wanted to believe my smile. They wanted to believe it was just a phase. They chose to believe that I was okay.

I wasn’t okay.

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I literally had it written on my walls.

I was such a chubby kid and a surprisingly large portion of those around me growing up commented on my “baby fat”, how I needed to cut out desserts or else I’d be fat forever, told me I needed to dress this way or that for a slimming figure, and much worse all before I hit my thirteenth birthday. I shrunk down so quickly my first year of high school that today I’m shocked no one intervened. The compliments I received about how thin I had become and how great I looked was the most accomplished I had ever felt. I loved feeling my ribs, collarbones, and hip bones poking through my clothes. How come no one ever realized that if that were unhealthy in a pet, it’s unhealthy in a child?

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But I didn’t stop there. I started counting calories, giving myself a limit of 500 a day. No, that’s not a typo. 500. I still remember talking with a friend about how we’d rather use our calories on candy bars rather than sandwiches because we were never properly educated on the importance of proper nutrition, empty calories, or the fact that calories are energy for your body. Calories became the enemy—a poison that must be avoided. Thin became an addition. Hunger became a positive feeling.

 

As I was nearing fifteen, my body started to broaden out. My wide hips and broad shoulders are simply the way the beautiful women of my family are built. I love them so much now, but the tiny teenager me saw them as a curse. None of the women in the magazines had them. None of the protagonists on any of the shows I watched had them. I continued to watch my intake of food and worked out as much as my low-energy body would allow.

 

My hair started to thin and fall out. My skin was dry and blemishes (which I was already prone to get due to genetics) were taking over my face, chest, shoulders, and back. However, I was still mocked by kids at school for my thighs and hips. I’m not joking here, despite all of this I was still bullied about my body. I very clearly remember someone telling me not to go to the county fair because my thighs would break the ferris wheel.

 

Then I hit my worst.

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My body stopped properly regulating my blood sugar and I began passing out from it. A few of my guy friends intervened and made sure I ate lunch at school daily. They were the first ones to ever tell me that I needed to eat and show that they care. However, I needed to be thinner and purged everything I ate in front of them.

It wasn’t long after this time that the switch finally flipped in my head. I would go to school, barely able to function, and come home, immediately falling asleep. All of my personal relationships were falling apart. I barely had the energy to eat even if I wanted to. I continued to have issues with getting incredibly dizzy or even blacking out.

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I never had a specific moment when I decided that I wanted to start taking better care of myself. I slowly began introducing more foods into my nonexistent diet and eventually had full meals. Gradually, my body became mine again.

I had a few relapses as my body filled out. My hips grew broad and didn’t look like any other girls’. Turns out I have what’s called “violin hip deformity”. Yes, deformity is part of the term. Because that’s what every developing girl wants to hear about her unique and beautiful shape. My violin hips cause me to look like I have a muffin top even without clothes, only deepening my hate towards my own skin.

One girl, upon seeing me at a sleepover when I was seventeen, commented that she always thought I had always wore my pants too tight but she then saw that my hips were just “weird”.

Dismorphia doesn’t even cover my struggle with my hips.

I have cellulite. I have broad shoulders. I don’t have perky boobs and they don’t fit into anything smaller than a baggy large. My hips are “deformed”. My thighs are big.

However, I have reached a point where I force myself to compliment myself every time I look into the mirror. One compliment. Two if I criticize myself.

My thighs are killer and amazingly strong, as are my shoulders. My boobs fill out shirts in wonderful ways. My hips are unique and should be used as a powerful body positive tool.

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It’s my body and I love it.

Girls today need to be educated that skinny doesn’t mean healthy and fat doesn’t mean unhealthy. They need to be shown different body types. They need to feel that they are beautiful for their minds and bodies, despite how they may look or develop. They need to be taught that the number on the scale, the number in their jeans, or the number assholes at school rate them does not define their self-worth.

All bodies are wonderful and deserve to be loved because they all house beautiful minds that deserve to be nourished.

Oh, sweet technology

I have missed my darling blog! My poor old laptop finally bit the dust and wouldn’t stay on for more than a few minutes at a time. I could have written on my phone but autocorrect made it rather difficult.

But now, as a birthday present, I have a new laptop! A lovely, lightweight piece perfect for writing on.

I’m going to try and make time in my chaotic little life to start blogging again. As soon as I have another sunny day, I’ll start by taking pictures of the current state of the remodel to show how it’s going. We’re currently in the breakfast nook and the supplies have spilled over into the dining room to make it a construction zone again. However, progress is happening.

I also have a small vegetable garden, a new kitten, and a drive to start a little home bakery.

I rank the kitten the most important of those topics.

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His name is Merlin. He’s a shadow demon and spoiled rotten after only a month and a half. He’s also bonded with Kulu in such a way that suggests he sees the older male cat as a surrogate mother. I’ve never witnessed anything cuter!

Banana Oatmeal Muffins

I’ve mentioned before my preferred rules for healthy eating, but something I failed to mention is that I hate wasting food in any way. One issue that’s been nagging me for a few months now came to my attention after buying a box of Quaker Oats instant oatmeal packets. Although I typically get the maple and spice type flavors, this specific time I bought the fruit and cream variety pack.

Ever since I purchased this specific box, I’ve had four packets of banana and cream instant oatmeal sitting in my kitchen cabinets. Determined, I began to do a little research to figure out the best way to prevents this perfectly good food from going to waste. That’s when I had an epiphany…

 

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Despite being a bit dense in true muffin fashion, this recipe somehow managed to be light and airy at the same time. Also, the hint of a cream flavor really makes an impact! Even my picky eater of a husband enjoyed a couple of these for breakfast.

Ingredients:

  • 2 cups flour
  • 4 packets banana and cream instant oatmeal
  • 1 cup brown sugar
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1/2 tsp nutmeg
  • 1 tsp cinnamon
  • 3 bananas, mashed
  • 2 eggs
  • 1/2 cup butter, melted
  • 1 tsp vanilla

Directions:

  1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees (F)
  2. In a medium mixing bowl, stir together all of your dry ingredients.
  3. In a separate bowl, mash your bananas and then add your wet ingredients. Mix well.
  4. Add the banana mixture to the flour mixture, stirring just until the dry ingredients are moistened. If you overmix, you’re risking your muffins becoming far too dense.
  5. Spoon batter into greased muffin cups.
  6. Bake for 15 to 18 minutes or until toothpick comes out clean. I recommend to start checking around 12 minutes if your oven cooks a bit on the hotter side.
  7. Let cool in pan on wire rack for 10 minutes. Remove muffins from pan and let cool on wire rack.

HELP – Cleaning urine stains from hardwood

As I’ve mentioned time and time before, the house I live in is old. It’s the sort of old where it was built by my great-grandparents and the guest room was my grandpa’s bedroom as a child. (Yet no one knows why there’s that hideous carpet in there. But I digress.)

Over the years of our animal loving family living here, an accident or two hundred were bound to occur from fluffy little bladders. It certainly didn’t help that there’s evidence around the house that someone along the way didn’t do the best job of letting their dog out when it needed to go (aka, scratched up walls and doors and windowsills and carpet and so on).

Now that I’m here with my three little fluffs, I’ve come to realize that Kulu’s the worst trained cat we have.

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He has a tendency to urinate wherever he smells urine, not just in a litter box. So, between the previous animals of the house and the old hardwood floors, I’ve been going crazy with this cat. I began researching around a bit and found out that the odd dark spot in the middle of Kulu’s favorite potty party spot is old animal urine. I started taking steps trying to take out the smell by trying this tutorial but things didn’t go exactly how I’d hope.

I started by putting down paper towels and covering them with hydrogen peroxide.

But once a few hours passed and I took the paper towels off, I found that the peroxide pulled the finish from the floor. I’m not completely blaming the peroxide because the finish is on the old side and was already flaking in some places anyways. Apart from that issue, it didn’t help to take out the dark spot or get rid of the urine smell.

Take this as a cry for help.