Finding Motivation and Healing in This Mental Mess

It’s no secret – treatment tore me up and I’m pretty fragile. My mental mess has spilled out into every aspect of my life. Right now I’m just trying to hang on. It’s been one wild ride.

I have a good life but uncovering the root causes of my eating disorder revealed that it’s not as good as it seems. Now that I really see that, I know I have a lot of work to do.

I spend a lot of time alone during the day which unfortunately gives me ample opportunity to ruminate on hard feelings. Sometimes all I can do is write about it.

I cry every day and many nights I don’t want to go to bed because I don’t want a new day to begin. I’m holding on by a thin, frayed thread. 

But then I get some sleep – my body and brain get some much-needed rest and I find a tiny bit of optimism in the morning.

Every day I walk around feeling like I’m going to fall apart but for some reason, I still get up in the morning and do shit. Even after everything that’s happened – the trauma, the treatment, and the exhausting range of emotions – I still think better things are yet to come. Obviously, I can’t see the future, but I think my situation will improve.

I’m not blowing sunshine up anyone’s ass. This is truly how I feel and how I’m making it through the day.

Feelings are temporary.
Feelings are temporary.
Feelings are temporary.

I don’t need god. I know how to ask for help and I have the strength to heal myself.

I just have to hang on. 


What motivates you? How do you find hope when everything’s gone to shit?


  1. Katydid says

    What a timely post! I just got a bit or world-breaking news myself and I’m pondering the same thing. So you’re definitely not alone in that.

    Here’s a question I want you to think about, that you don’t have to answer here: what brings you joy? It could be something as simple as a bubble bath or catching fireflies and letting them go on a warm summer evening. Or coloring with your daughter. Or watching silly movies. Or…whatever makes you happy.

    Once you’ve identified that, think about ways you can bring more of that into your life. I’m going to take my own advice.

    Do you know what I think? I think you’re a survivor. Instead of lolling around in bed and making everyone’s life a living hell, you’re getting up, getting dressed, and being there.

  2. John Morales says

    I’ve always been a slacker; my wife is my motivation.

    Put it this way: surely you know it could be worse.

    Difference between hopeless hope and realistic hope, too. Can’t avoid that.

    Loving husband, beautiful daughter, no fear of homelessness or overt deprivation. That’s your situation, no?

    I reckon that’s not that bad, myself.

    Now, feeling bad about it, that’s obviously real enough.
    Whether or not the ‘why’ of it is knowable, it is a real thing.

    I very much hope that, at some point in your life, you find contentment.

    Best wishes.


    At a time of trauma early in my life I focused on telling myself “A rose still smells as sweet (no matter what is happening in my life). I walked every day, and I stopped to smell the flowers. It helped get me outside myself.

  4. moarscienceplz says

    Oh Ashes, I am so sorry you are dealing with such a mental burden.
    IANA psychologist, but I thnk maybe you need some ways to force yourself out of the usual ruts of your life. Is there a group of people who walk daily near you that you could join? If possible, hook up with someone in that group to make daily commitments to join in the walk, and if you don’t show up they will call you to ask why.
    It sounds like you are not in a position to get a job right now, but could you try to find something you could volunteer for that involves definite time commitment? I think you need to get out of the house more, and knowing that someone is depending on your showing up I think would help you focus away from your own negative feelings.
    Maybe you could fund-raise for a cause that you care about. If you (for example) have a bake sale every two weeks and donate the proceeds to a good cause, you could track the dollars and cents on a big chart on your bedroom wall and maybe that would inspire you.

    • ashes says

      Thank you so much for your good advice. I do have a part time job but I had barely worked at all since the pandemic. However, in the last week or two they have given me a few things to do which has gotten me out of the house. I think that will really help. Just like you said…getting me out of my usual ruts.

  5. ashes says

    Thank you all for your comments today. They really mean a lot to me. I’ve had a very difficult time since coming home from treatment in February, but I’m okay. I still see a therapist and dietitian every week and I am surrounded by people who love me. I am learning that sometimes you have to go through a lot of heartache to get to a better place and I’m grateful that this is a safe place for me to share my journey. Thank you so much for your help.

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