Lindsey Hall

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🏆 Eating Disorder & PCOS Journalist & Speaker // Author of ‘I Haven’t Shaved In Six Weeks’ Blog // Seen on TODAY, Cosmo, Wash Po, etc. // 💛⛰🌈📝🚐

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When my rehab therapist asked me to map a 1 year plan, all those years ago: I simply said “I want a good life. A full one.” Lol. That’s a lie. I actually said that and then still secretly jotted down: • “And I want to be fit still. And hike all the mountains and be thin effortlessly without having to try so hard. And I want to eat freely but ya know - have balance (lolz)” • Point is: no mention of a van was in my recovery plan. A family was. A partner. Woven into some deep ED threads that hadn’t had a chance to undo themselves. • I could’ve never pictured #vanlife as a thing for me. That seemed too free. Too anxiety filled. Too ... just not what I was “supposed” to do. • I wanted to work in book publishing, but couldn’t picture writing my own book. • I wanted to have a kid - named Sawyer - and be a good wife. • Those things haven’t happened. I’m thankful for that in this moment. • You just can’t know what you will want in the ED. Not yet. Not for awhile. • But the recovery part of this is that it leaves room for dreaming again. • And when you have room to dream again - my god the endless possibility. • To be filled to the brim with hope - and magic, and dreams. • That’s what you recover for - the flexibility of dreaming and making dreams happen. That’s all I got today 💛🚐🥰✨ • • • #edfam #recovery #anarecovery #edfamily #eatingdisorderrecovery #edrecovery #anorexiarecovery #mentalhealth #recoveryfam #dietculturesucks #recoveryispossible #recoverysayings #anorexianervosarecovery #bulimiarecovery #bingeeatingrecovery

I Haven't Shaved In 6 Weeks

that’s functional: two legs that transplant me from A to B, two arms that can type this post, a back that is crooked – and yet still allows me to summit 14ers, a core that’s allowing me flexibility to practice yoga. but it’s an interesting perspective when you write to your body like it’s a person, even a friend. Because I don’t feel like I’m as smart as the people I surround myself with and I don’t expect that my body image plague will leave me on the days it’s intrinsically bad, but I have noticed a sense of feeling like I’m

Portland has been stressful with #vanlife for whatever reason - so many places are take out only with Covid which made wifi hard yesterday, and not to mention my friend and I are so busy with work so it’s been all around a pretty big grind. • Expectations right? We envisioned coming to Portland and living it up yet lol we find ourselves in a motel soaking up luxurious wifi and eating leftovers. • All part of the experience I tell myself. And I love it anyhow. But feeling a massive dose of guilt today and shame. • It has been hard to work consistently on the road - and so much of my freelance work is content creation. Like I’m the person moving the ball forward to so many projects for so many different clients and so it’s up to me to meet deadlines and get shit written in time. • Can be taxing - writing is taxing. I don’t always want to do it and yet it’s 90% of my job. • To create something from nothing. That’s writing. And it can be tiring. • Im pity partying today lol I had to go to urgent care yesterday too and spent like $200 for 20 minutes which kills me bc of course my insurance doesn’t cover shit. • How is America’s healthcare system so whack still? Infuriating. • Anyway, that’s my rant for the day. I don’t have anything profound to say. Just tired, and a bit unnerved in Portland. And needing to better figure out how to manage my schedule. • With 8+ deadlines today - I love you all 💛🚐 • • #edfam #recovery #anarecovery #edfamily #eatingdisorderrecovery #edrecovery #anorexiarecovery #mentalhealth #recoveryfam #dietculturesucks #recoveryispossible #recoverysayings #anorexianervosarecovery #bulimiarecovery #bingeeatingrecovery

"Oh, I Can't Just Eat Pirates Booty Through This Pandemic?": Coronavirus and Recovery

A month ago, I was on a connecting flight in San Francisco to go to Europe and Morocco indefinitely (okay, probably like a month because money doesn’t grow on trees): (I’m going through a quarter-life crisis, we’ll call it), go makeup free, taste Cafe Con Leche at cafes, wander the streets of Europe again in flowing skirts and stop in Seville in southern Spain to reminisce of my year there as an au pair (I do not recommend being an au pair FYI This is why every time I’m insanely productive with writing is right up until the moment that I’m given a deadline. We couldn’t do anything without permission, couldn’t go anywhere outside of the compound we were in, and our lives were unfolding and we had little control of time or days.

Early morning & I walk through camp to collect clothes from the KOA laundry. There’s a man eating cottage cheese nearby, sat on a bench as I wave gingerly “good morning.” • Cottage cheese. • I think of ED treatment. Residential 2013 & sat round a table w/ my treatment team, having just sucked down a precisely-measured-cup of horrific cottage cheese. • In treatment, back then anyway, they made us fill out meal plans in advance. Having no fucking clue whether I enjoyed the taste, I’d chosen cottage cheese every single dairy option for weeks as it seemed the “healthiest”. 21x cottage cheese. • I regretted it the moment a spoonful of that slurpy cheese hit my tongue. I detest cottage cheese. • Afterwards, I begged to change my menu. Eventually staging a cottage cheese coup & refusing to leave the cafeteria until I could have yogurt. • But on this particular day, it was still “a discussion to be had.” So the saga continued. • “What’s up?” I waited for my next round of “excellent progress” slips & “rehab cheerleader” awards. • My primary therapist frowned. “We’ve been talking.” • “I’ll cut to the chase,” the psychiatrist interjected w/ a bored tone. “We’re recommending you stay. We don’t think you’re committed & you give us what we want to hear.” • I opened my mouth to protest, but the blueberry bagel bits stuffed deep in my pocket burned from breakfast. • My therapist stared. “You tell us what we want to hear & I wonder if you then do whatever you want when we don’t look.” • “I’ve told everyone anything they wanna hear since I was 12 so thanks for the novel insight.” When I’m ashamed, I hold daggers. • I think of that day, sorting laundry. It was confusing really. I wanted to be committed, but I’d never really been fully committed to anything. • I think about how I tend to live life walking into every situation arduously looking for the exit, dragging both feet over the threshold of a doorway, bc it’s the right’ thing to do, but leaving the door cracked - “to catch some air.” • I wonder why #vanlife has come easy & perhaps it’s bc in this lifestyle you’re never confined to anything. • Continued in comments 💛 • #recovery #vanlifediaries

I Still Suck At Mirrors: And 5 Other Recovery Lessons For 2020

like all of the sudden I’m gonna see something catastrophic that wasn’t there literally 10 minutes before and be like ” I have this interesting leftover eating disorder thing where when I’m feeling uncomfortable in my clothes, or participating in events like weddings or some other way where I’m at the mercy of many other schedules and times, I tend to wear the same item of clothing (one that obviously feels comfortable) for days in a row. Anxious when I don’t get to choose what I’m eating for 3-4 days unless I wanna leave the group and go Uber somewhere on my own (which like I’m gonna do cause I wanna be with my friends because what else is recovery for but to enjoy the presence of being with the ones we love in this life?) I’m pretty proud of the things I’ve done in this life so far, especially in recovery, and that in itself has given me a confidence I lacked entirely in my early 20s when I was confused, bumbling out of college – and bouncing around the world with no bloody idea what I was gonna do or who I was gonna become.

Sometimes I look at my eating disorder cycle as a sickness that flares up when I don’t pay attention. Like if I’m not doing the productive recovery things - it’s like a chronic illness that starts to climb into my psyche as a parasite. • Graphic? Maybe so. But I’ve been sick the last two days and my brain is foggy. • I notice as I sit here in my self-proclaimed “soft summer” that I’m starting to feel my hips in the morning. That validation baby. Needing to make sure they feel a certain way. • “Soft summer,” I proclaim. Ah but only “so soft” as I’m willing to let it be. It’s a new thing that’s started to happen. I guess it’s with all the sitting and acclimating to van life. I want to make sure I’m free but ya know “don’t get crazy linds” is what the ED voice whispers. • I keep thinking “oh I’m gonna need to really start working out again soon this isn’t good for my mental health or my aging 32 y/o body!!!!!!!” • Isn’t it sneaky the lil webs we weave in our mind? • Now, no need to have concern for me. In fact, pls don’t. I am aware of this and calling it out so I know I have choices here. It’s not a “huge issue” but it’s one I’m like sitting back on and wondering “huh. Well I guess this is expected and now what do I wanna do about it?” • What do I want to do about it? The ever present predicament in an eating disorder. • The ever present question. Nipping at my ear in the cold Portland rain today. • I wonder sometimes how I can go weeks now without an eating disorder flare up. • Sometimes not even a thought. • It’s fascinating what will trigger it - in the most morbid way. • I eat the burrito anyway. And the guilt, well it too will pass. All these feelings momentary 💛🚐 • • • #edfam #recovery #anarecovery #edfamily #eatingdisorderrecovery #edrecovery #anorexiarecovery #mentalhealth #recoveryfam #dietculturesucks #recoveryispossible #recoverysayings #anorexianervosarecovery #bulimiarecovery #bingeeatingrecovery

What Ending My Engagement Taught Me About Recovery

I’ve found over the years: there’s a difference between ignorantly proclaiming to ‘not give a shit about what people think’ – and valuing perspective of the peoples who have taken great strides to know you. Maybe we all live life at too high a pitch, those of us who absorb emotional things all day, and as mere consequence we can never feel merely content: we have to be unhappy, or ecstatically, head-over-heels happy, and those states are difficult to achieve within a stable, solid relationship. I used to think–and given the way my ex and I ended up, maybe I still really do–that all relationships need the kind of ferocious push that infatuation brings, just to get you started and to push you over the humps of self-denial, anxiety, past pain, and Instagram-stalking obsession. Sometimes it feels like it does, and sometimes you realize it’s nothing more than a booty call bandaid – masking the same pain that you know you’re gonna feel again at some point anyway.

Being untethered is a weird, sometimes harsh, experience with #vanlife. • What’s odd is how little I find I talk to people I’m close to - a quick text to mom to let her know I’m safe. A Marco Polo video to two childhood friends. • A lone call to my high school best friend who’s fixing to do this life as well. • I have a hard time keeping track of time & date. Like when did that person text me? 3 days ago. Shit. • Or I call ppl at times where they’re like “Linds I have kids I’m trying to put down can I call later?” • My friend got here two days ago & it’s been a fulfilling social experience. To have someone to do something w & just talk to. • Yet in the same sentence I’m growing used to being untethered. Used to the van being my space. Used to being... alone? Can it be? • Let me not kid myself. I still spent 10 minutes lamenting to a friend in nyc yesterday that I can’t get that human I was seeing before I left out of my effing head. • “What is it with brief affairs, those one monthers,” I groaned. “You never get a chance to tire of the person really, staying up all hours talking & learning about the other, so you’re still left with the romanticism. Like you date someone long enough you see why it ends. But you date someone briefly - you’re left with mystery.” • She agreed. Then she told me, in nicer language, to buck up & embrace this solitude. And that I was in a 2 year relationship before this fling & a 2 year relationship before that. And that for the 8 years she’s known me I’ve been in relationship. • “Oh bite me,” I said bitterly. “I just thought this person would miss me more. Like why don’t they seem to miss my charming personality,” I droaned sarcastically. • “Probably bc you made a series of life choices that indicate you absolutely do not need or want to be in a relationship, LOL.” • It’s the “lol” that I guffawed at. Like as if the writing is so clearly on the wall but it’s a foreign language to me. • I don’t know what’s right - or if anything is ever really right. All I know is what I feel. I am seeing happiness in alone, becoming untethered. And there’s a person, somewhere in the world, that I think of daily. Both feelings in tandem 💛🚐

Met someone in a van last night at the campsite: “why’d you do it?” They asked, their dog sniffing around my van n my cat staring horrified through the screen window. • I kinda laughed. “Oh y’know, big break up. Put all my shit in my storage. The usual.” • They smirked. “Same.” • We grinned knowingly to one another. • “I love blowing shit up,” I self-deprecate. “Like if I’m gonna break up and destroy my life I’m gonna like implode it and leave.” • They nod. “Is that really how you look at it, though?” • I shake my head. “Only when I’m feeling sorry for myself. Most of the time I’m in awe that I did it.” • “You should be.” • I thank them. Go back to my daily cat litter sweep. Life in the van is not always glamorous lemme tell you. I spend more time sweeping pebbles and dirt outta my car than you’d think. • Go to bed last night, thinking about all the choices that led me to this moment. • I don’t think I thought I could do this on my own - always waiting for the right partner to be the one to pull the trigger and get me in a van. • Why am I always so dependent on someone else to push my dreams? I wonder. And I don’t have that answer. • Think about the smoothie I drank and the quinoa I devoured. Think about my ex and moving out of our house in May. • Think about how strong I feel lately - how I’m living the most unstable life imaginable yet feel the most stable person I’ve been in years. • Think about how recovery led me here - without it I wouldn’t have ever chosen this I would’ve waited. Waited for someone to push my dream. • Waited for the “perfect” moment. Waited for every box to be ticked. • But that is not life. Life is messy and recovery doesn’t make it less so. Just gives you the tools to handle mess. • To handle the midnight cat litter sweeps, and the wrong directions and the heartache that comes with being fully alive. • I am happy and there was never a perfect moment to do this. • Life, unplanned 💛🚐 • • #edfam #recovery #anarecovery #edfamily #eatingdisorderrecovery #edrecovery #anorexiarecovery #mentalhealth #recoveryfam #recoveryispossible #recoverysayings #anorexianervosarecovery #bulimiarecovery #vanlife #womenontheroad #vanlifediaries

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