Recovery: Coming to Life in a Living World

elephant rock Sedona Arizona-27527-3
You are a living force that strives to heal and prosper in a living world. Awakening to this knowledge puts you on your eating disorder recovery path, no matter your age or the severity of your illness.  Once you are aware, healing resources abound.
I watched the documentary, Sedona: The Spirit of Wonder last night.  I was attracted to film because I visited Sedona five years ago and was fortunate to have a private jeep tour - just the driver and me.  Anytime I felt attracted to a place we would aim for the spot and stop there.

I stood in silence - human and jeep silence - so I could hear the sounds of the land and feel what was there for me to feel.  I climbed rocks, found ancient carvings and drawings, visited ruins of dwellings in the majestic red rocks.  I marveled at golden flowers of riotous blooming cactus.  Sedona found tiny openings in my heart and my imagination, infiltrated my soul and expanded me in ways I'm still learning about.

I hoped the film would reignite my personal experiences.  It did and more.  Personally, I found the narrative weak, slanted and uninspiring. But the power of the land comes through despite the narrative flaws.  Much of the film is a slow aerial tour through the fantastic rock formations that may touch your heart as they did mine.  They may even inspire you to visit or start reading Tony Hillerman novels.

Looking at the vistas as they appeared before my eyes I realized I was both flying above the land and swimming under a deep and forgotten ocean.  What I was seeing was the bottom of an ancient sea.  I could imagine coyotes, bears and mountain lion amid the pines and deer trails. I could also imagine prehistoric sea creatures and perhaps coming mammals gliding through the hollows and narrows of the rock peaks.

Mind, heart, soul, imagination expansions like this can dislodge your rigid eating disorder routines. Even a glimpse of a wider and awesome world can create a permanent opening to more appreciation of your own life and the scope and span of life on this planet. That opening can be a birthing place for your recovery.

The film ended with a Native American quote that transcended all the mundane modern narration preceding.

If we look at the path, we do not see the sky. 
We are earth people
on a spiritual journey to the stars.

Our quest, our earth walk,
is to look within,
to know who we are,
to see that we are connected to all things.
There is no separation, only in the mind.
......source unknown

So, in the spirit and mood of the teachings from Sedona, I wish that as you progress on your earth walk you experience a growing awareness of life.  I wish for you an integration of mind, body and spirit that will break up the limitations of eating disorder perceptions.  I wish for you the particular joys and freedom that can only be found in real recovery.

*Elephant Rock (right) and Munds Mountain (left) as seen looking south from SR 179 in Sedona, Arizona
photo by Ken Thomas


0 # Wow, I guess I wasn't ready to relate toKymL 2010-08-11 20:37
Wow, I guess I wasn't ready to relate to this blog on April 12th (which ironically is my birthday!!) but I came across it today and it's exactly what I'm feeling today!! Recovery is bringing me a new life! The world is brighter, feelings are clearer, the little things in life seem so big and so wonderful! My clear mind has made me curious again! I want to test it and try to do things I wasn't even willing to think about doing 3 months ago (before treatment)! I am enjoying my family and friends again, and I want to know how they are doing instead of being so focused on how I'm doing. I want to embrace all that life has for me and I know I don't want to go back to the dark place my ED had brought me. There's a line in a song that strikes me “I'm looking for a high in the land of the living.” I know I still have work to do for my recovery, but for 3 months I've been wearing a bracelet that I made that says “trust the journey;” Well, now I'm ready to “Enjoy the journey!” Thanks for this blog......4 months ago :-)
0 # Dear Kym, You learning the power of apinkjoanna 2010-08-11 22:25
Dear Kym,

You learning the power of an eating disorder to block your awareness of life and the challenges you face in healing.

You now have a greater understanding and appreciation of what it means to not be ready to hear something because you can hear what you couldn't hear before, and you know it.

When the eating disorder blocks you from life you can't know or relate to rich here and now life experiences. When the eating disorder lifts, even a little, you get a glimpse of what was invisisble or incomprehensible or boring or irrelevant before.

You get an opportunity with this realization.
You learn there is more to being alive than you knew. Once you know that you will be more open to trust people who have earned your respect and allow them to introduce you to even more ways of being present for your life. Hopefully, the first of these people will be your therapist.


Isn't it a great to feel alive?
0 # It really does feel good! I know I've wKymL 2010-08-12 07:50
It really does feel good! I know I've worked hard for this and I've telling ED and his reminders of the things I still to work on, that he can't take this from me! I will enjoy these feelings in this moment and not worry about what feelings will come tomorrow!
0 # Right on! What you wrote to me in thpinkjoanna 2010-08-15 22:41
Right on!

What you wrote to me in this last comment is short and sweet and vital to your recovery.

I suggest you write out your sentence in large
letters and post it on a wall where you can see it every day. It will come in handy.

Something like: "I feel good being alive. I enjoy this feeling in this moment. I do not worry about what feelings will come tomorrow."

You might add:

"I feel what I feel."

"I tolerate what I feel knowing that feeling is being alive and part of my ongoing recovery."

Affirmations are helpful.


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