So my last email from Melrose. What will you read to put you to sleep each night? Today has been a good day. I look back over the past few days and can clearly see in my own mind the progression in being ready to go home tomorrow. From being certain that I wasn’t ready last week, to knowing that Wednesday I would be ready but admitting that I still needed time, to feeling nervous and scared, and now to today. There is a flip in my mind. I am ready to go home. I met with my psychiatrist today, not to be mixed up with my psychologist. That was a boost of confidence because I told him that I was preparing myself for how hard its going to be. What he said surprised me because it is different from what I’ve ben hearing. To him going home has its positives in the fight against ED. He said I’ll be in my normal life, doing my normal activities, staying busy. Unlike here where I”m in an environment that is 100% focused on ED. Being surrounded by those who struggle like me, staff who are focused on teaching me about ED, dietitians focusing me on rethinking food, sitting in groups to learn about ways to cope with ED. But at home I’ve got a life to lead. That in itself can be a distraction from ED. He’s not taking away from the constant battle, but he also doesn’t like to preach gloom and doom. And although many have told me it will be hard, those same people and others have told me they know I’m ready. And today, I know I”m ready. At lunch today I had the same problem as Saturday – eating a “do not eat food”, but unlike Saturday, I talked ED down. What I learned from Saturday I practiced today. It just amazes me all the things I’ve learned and all the ways I’ve been able to use those strategies to sharpen my resolve against ED. Everyday I get a little bit better. And one day, yep, ED will be a whisper I can blow off with a little shrug of my shoulder.
I have a survey – Who in the crowd knows how Rhonda feels about dogs? Especially about having a dog in our house?
We almost were going to come home with a dog tomorrow. And we still might have one in a couple of weeks. And I was excited about it. Here’s that story. On the way to supper I met TJ almost in tears. Her dad is taking care of her dog and told her that he couldn’t anymore, that he needed to get rid of it. TJ loves that dog, but more importantly, it is the thing she has left of her life with Josh, her husband. She talked about that dog often in the past weeks. As we sat through supper and I watched her sit in silence almost in tears, I knew exactly what I wanted to do and I couldn’t wait to call Benj to ask him before I talked to her. Because I have an amazing husband, he agreed that we could take her dog home with us tomorrow and keep him until TJ comes out of the Residential program here in January. I have never wanted to do something for somebody more than I have wanted this. You guys know how I feel about dogs, but there is no way I’m going to let TJ lose one more thing in her life. That would set her way back and she has been growing so much in the past couple weeks. I can visibly see her changing. When I told her we’d take the dog for her, I wish wish wish you could have seen her face! And I was actually excited to have a dog which told me without a doubt this was what we were meant to do, and the fact that Benj agreed. He knew that I would never ask something like this if it wasn’t important to me. But alas, we are not coming home with the dog tomorrow. TJ called her dad and he decided that it would be important for the dog to finish dog school for two weeks yet. She said he’s one to need processing time and to spring on him with a day’s notice that a stranger to him would take the dog – that was too much of a jump all at once. 🙂 But when the dog is done with obedience school, it is likely we will meet him halfway and take the dog until January. So unless things change for him between now and 2 weeks, we’ll be dog sitters for a month or so. Hey, I figure it will teach the boys some responsibility and me some flexibility and you never know, maybe it’s a trial period to finding out if we are actually a dog family. I”m just so so happy she doesn’t have to lose her dog!
It was a busy night here – 4 new patients came in today. One is a repeat who acts tough, but she was describing her home life and said in her rush to get here she forgot most all of her clothes and things at her place. And she has NO ONE to bring it to her. No one. Can you imagine no one to bring you clothes or a blanket? I haven’t met the other two yet, but the 4th one is a 24 year old who I hurt for. She looks exactly like I must have looked 15 days ago. She tried to hold back tears but they would come out every once in awhile. She looks scared and lost and lonely. That was me. And now I”m me. Only I’m me so much better. I”m more of the me that God meant me to be. I will always explain Melrose as the experience of my life I never would have chosen but that I would never give up for anything. Life changing. In so many ways.
A deep deep thank you for being my support and my sounding board and prayer warriors. I know staff here is blown away by the support I have. Not many have what I have and it is why I’m ready to go home after only 16 days. And now its onward and upward! Woot woot!