Vrishabha- the sacred bull of Lord Shiva… or more widely known- Taurus, the Bull reigns this month of May. Our daughter turns 14 on this May 20th, and she definitely characterizes the nature of the bold, loyal, and very stubborn Taurus!
Before being diagnosed with Anorexia, birthday’s had always been a festive and richly tasting affair. And while we’ll continue partaking in this annual delight, it’s still a bit difficult for her to freely enjoy what never took a second guess years past. She’s committed to challenging herself, though there are days she’s not too happy to do so, and will boldly (envision the Taurus with plumes of smoke flaring from nostrils!) make that clear– well, what were you like at 14, minus an eating disorder?
I’m forever grateful to those who also remain equally, if not at times more, committed to helping support our daughter in keeping focus upon her recovery. Recovery is not easy for sufferers, and parents still get bawked a’ plenty and treated with disdain, misjudgment, and left to the side when there requires a much more encompassing circle to complete for true healing and whole-ness to take place. And dualistically, sufferers also need their own space, their own pace to regain their true Selves back once nutritionally and weight stabilized– this requires alot of Love, patience, perseverance and sometimes a compassionately coordinated “team” all working together. It makes me think of the Buddhist practice of mindfulness and the use of “a two-handed practice”:
I can sit in my predicament as a witness, not as a plaintiff or judge: ‘Here I am in this situation and I sit squarely in it and breathe into it. At the same time, I am aware that I can handle this and get through it without becoming devastated. I can trust my competence neither to become dramatically overwhelmed nor to be stoically untouched. This sense of competence frees me from fear, since fear thrives on powerlessness. I imagine myself holding my predicament in one hand and my power to work with it in the other. One hand is serenely mindful; one is courageously working. When I hold both realities this way, I am agreeable to things as they are, and I am doing all I can to change them for the better as well.” -D. Richo
This resonates with me deeply as a parent and the complexities illnesses like eating disorders present to us. Now if only we can collectively and universally have provided the very best in evidence-based, highest standard of quality care of treating eating disorders and supporting families in such a comprehensively and equally accessible manner– that would be my wish!
Our daughter has many “wishes” and dreams she wants to pursue. We simply want to wish her a very Happy Birthday, happy 14th Year, to continued Health and vitality… and to a courageous healthy-stubborn side that can be an anchor for her when difficulties and stress arise. Knowing she can reach out and ask for help, she’s worth every ounce of her hard work on the road to recovery she has traveled thus far, and that we Love her very, very much!
This is a day of promise –
Of hopefulness, laughter, and cheer,
For this is a day of remembering
The good things that happened all year –
A day for reflecting on memories
Shared with friends and with family, too,
Who were so much a part
of the joys in your heart
And the love that you felt
all year through-
This is a day of promise
Of the beauty and warmth life can hold,
And of new dreams to dream
and more love to share
Through a year that’s about to unfold.