Thursday, January 22, 2009

sharing is caring.

Fainting, seizures, heart monitors, plans of suicide.. EKGs, EEGs, echocardiograms.. How often do you hear about these things in relation to your friends (assuming you're under 70)? How often do you hear "ER"? I hear them a lot, especially lately. These are people I know and love, whom I've lived with and shared way too much personal information with.

I sat next to a good friend of mine from Walden at dinner Saturday night. I met her in PHP just over a year ago now, which is strange, as it feels like it's been years. As she talked, I looked at her face and thought, If I were emotionally removed from this community, it would send a chill down my spine to think of the things she's done in her past. But, I'm not. And it didn't.
I'm not much phased by any of it anymore, which is odd knowing how those who haven't experienced it, personally, are so overly shaken by it, it seems. This, of course, is not to say that I don't care. I care very much. I care every time I hear a friend is going to the ER or back to treatment. I care every time I receive an e-mail or Facebook message from someone I've never met that wanted me to know s/he is going to treatment for the first time and was hoping I could settle their nerves about what to expect.
I think the difference is that I no longer worry. Worry is wasted energy and, let's be honest, it doesn't help anyone. Action and care help, worry does not. Maybe it's because I know the routes or because I know that everything will turn out how it's meant to. I can support someone, but I cannot save them. They have to save themselves and, when they're ready, they will.

It's hard when you form these relationships. You grow to learn these peoples' stories and to love them during some of the hardest times of their lives. Meanwhile, you're fighting for your own. I just hope people are able to find where to draw the line so that they don't lose sight of what's most important: their own recovery. You can't be much of a wall to lean on if you can't even hold yourself up.


Aly said...

I really enjoy reading your insights because you look at it from both perspectives. Its so true because when the perrson is ready for recovery thats when it will begin. No matter how much others try to guide them through it if their hearts not in it - its not going to happen. As for not being much of a wall to lean on when you can't even support yourself.. That is true, but odd.. throughout my years of treatment I have found myself to be many peoples "go-to-girl" for advice, which is flattering because I really do have nothing but words of wisdom. Yet when it comes to myself I have yet proven those theories in my life. I can't help myself, yet so many people come to me for support when I am cleary struggling. I love helping others, but I can't help but wonder if they want help.. or want to "trigger" themselves furter into ED.

Labyrinith said...

I love that you wrote this. I love you Ms. Frozen Oranges. I am keeping things in perspective and have not forgotten your words of wisdom. It is true, how much of a wall can we be to others when we are still learning how to hold ourselves up. The past few days have been so draining I feel like I was hit by a bus. Not good for anyone, especially the road I want to continue on. Elise said it best, we can't be there for J (or S) if we aren't taking care of ourselves. I often think how they recommend we don't form relationships outside of treatment, and this is probably why but I would be lost without those I have grown to know and love and truly call friends-that means you, Ms. Frozen Oranges. xo me

JaRube said...

"Action and care help, worry does not."

There's seven words I think could make lots of people more relaxed and productive. Wise as always.

Love you.

Robbi Rubenstein said...

Beautifully written. Beautifully learned. xox

Amanda said...

I totally agree with all that you have said. There are those times when those around you tell you to reach out and ask for help when you need it. I find it easier to ask those that have dealt with it themselves. Yet, I am scared. I don't want to bring them down or trigger them. I usually choose not to reach out...

Not sure where that line is, still trying to find it.

Thank you for your inspiration!

Anonymous said...

i agree with you here, there is no point in struggling with this a lot at the moment, not with someone im in recovery with but a freind and i want to talk2 her so much but i just get so tongue tied and i cant, its breaking my heart because i just dont know what shes going thru and i dont know if she needs or wants my help...i just wish i could speak up to her about it,i'm just feeling a little lost in all this... thanks for your post tho, its always helpful to know others are working on the same, XXX