Tuesday, August 6, 2013

On My MInd

I just finished the book 'Wild' by Cheryl Strayed.  It was an interesting book and now I want to hike the Pacific Crest Trail.  Anyway... books of people's life stories always confuse me and I start to think what a failure I must be.  Cheryl for instance hikes the PCT to find herself and deal with some past events.  She is out on the trail for a summer and what else is there to do but be with yourself.  At the end of the book she talks about her life now and it all seems perfect.  As if that hike changed her life to the point all of her other negative coping skills disappeared.  Of course she is married to her perfect man with kids and the whole thing.  Is her life really as great as she makes it out to be?  Not to pick on Cheryl because all of these types of life finding books end the same.  Why can't someone just say... yes, I did that and it changed my life but I still struggle... or life didn't quite turn out the way I thought but I have learned to cope and life is good.  I would think after a life changing event like a hike on the PCT the world would be different... it is what I am noticing with my life on the road.  Why the need to make it all seem so  perfect... like if I went and hiked the PCT, for instance, next summer everything in my life would fall in place and I wouldn't have bad days or bad thoughts or loose days from depression or think about my body and food in a negative way.

I have had people ask me if I consider myself recovered from my Eating Disorder.  I say no because recovered is such a permanent word.  I feel I will be in recovery forever.  Life happens, things happen, thoughts come about and yes, my first thought is my Eating Disorder.  I may or may not act upon those thoughts but to me recovered means my Eating Disorder isn't there anymore.  I can deal with life without ever thinking about depriving myself in some way shape or form.  That I love my body no matter what I wear or what the media tells me.  I don't have days where depression takes over or anxiety about the world.  I would be able to live a 'normal' life... well, as normal as I would ever want my life to be.  I guess 'normal' for me would mean being able to feel whatever the feelings may be, not to take out other people's actions on myself, treat food as what it is, a need for survival instead of something that I need to be allowed to have.  My life can be exhausting.  I can have a few good months and then out of the blue be knocked down and it will take a few months to get myself back to the point I was before.  It is frustrating.  I feel like a failure when I have to constantly go back to my team and each time I fear they won't be there anymore.  They will give up because I just can't get it right.

I have also been asked when I will write a book about my life.  How in the world do you pick out the moments to write about.  I have over 30 years of life, drama, recovery not to mention my life on the road.  What is it suppose to be... an encyclopedia of Jackie.  Each moment creates the next and I still haven't figured it all out like it seems these other life changing books have done.  Maybe I am missing something somewhere??   Maybe I want to much??  Who knows.  Just something on my mind the past few days.


  1. There are no perfect endings, because perfect does not exist. Books have to have an ending, but no one is going to have it together all of the time. Failure would be NOT reaching out to your team when you need support. I wish that I could believe in total recovery for myself, but the path is still slippery. That is okay. As long as you are still fighting, you will never be a failure. Love you!

  2. Yes, I think in the case of the book "Wild", you are missing something. What made that book so great was, of course, the story but also she is an excellent writer. I am an avid reader and I couldn't put that book down. She expresses herself beautifully.

  3. Shoot my comment disappeared... This is your book! You have been writing it all along. The struggles, the joys... start wherever you like. I found your blog at the point when you were living in New York taking showers in your home made shower, doing Farmer's market for the bread people, saving for Tic Tac. It's real, it's raw, it's you. people need to see real, how you have dealt with your issues, and what real determination looks like!

    1. I did put a book as one of my new Patreon goals but until my basic needs are met and some of the stress is taken away from existing, as I like to call my life, I can’t take the time and effort to write a book. It’s like when I created a CD of the songs I wrote during my recovery, everyone said was needed, then everyone wanted for free or wasn’t interested when it actually came out. So there are boxes of CDs in my parents garage and a lot of money was lost that really couldn’t afford to be lost. Now there isn’t even money that could be lost for the sake of a book.