There is an Asshole Living in my Head.

There is an Asshole Living in my Head.

  There is an Asshole Living in my Head.   I’ve got an asshole living in my head. Ed, the voice of my eating disorder, still inserts his ugly comments into my life sometimes and recently he has been particularly loud. I find myself comparing my body to other women’s bodies and to past versions of my own body. I think about wanting to lose weight and feel myself judging every curve of my stomach. I am anxious about wearing bathing suits and certain dresses. If I just work out more and lose a few pounds before my trip to Nicaragua I’ll be happy, right? I shouldn’t look like this. I didn’t used to feel this uncomfortable in my own body so I must be failing, right? Ed’s voice can be so convincing…and the whole thing pisses me off. No! My body is not fat, Ed! No! I do not need to have six-pack abs to have fun at the beach. My body should NOT look like my anorexic eighteen-year-old body. I do not need to compare myself to other women with their own body types and body image issues. I am twenty-five-years-old with the body of a twenty-five-year-old woman who does not have the time to look like a fitness model and who finds fulfillment in other areas of life than only the physical. My happiness is not determined by the size of my body! I am beautiful and sexy and gorgeous and amazing…and I am tired of thinking that I am not. I do not want to live my whole life looking back at old pictures thinking,...
Year in Review – 2017

Year in Review – 2017

  Zoe Vlastos’ Year In Review   A New Year!  A quarter century of life! And 2017 was a blast!! I cannot fit all the amazing times I had into one blog post but I have created a shap-shot of my 25th year of life to give you an idea of what I’ve been up to!   December 2016—May 2017 Base Home: Boulder/Denver Colorado   Denver Children’s Home As a Youth Treatment Counselor at Denver Children’s Home I spent more time than I ever have before in a K-12 classroom. In the Day Treatment Program school at the facility I worked with students ages 10-18 who had experienced trauma, abuse, and/or neglect. I greatly enjoyed working with underserved populations, loved being around the kids all the time, and learned lots of group management and counseling skills. I also got to work with some amazingly dedicated and passionate people. Although I did decide to leave DCH due to a draining and unfulfilling schedule, I am extremely grateful for the experience!   Eating Disorder Foundation Gala Speech and Performance In April I spoke about my recovery from Anorexia Nervosa and provided a piano performance in front of an audience of 400+ fancy-smancy guests at the Eating Disorder Foundation’s annual Gala fundraiser. I am beyond honored to have had the opportunity to share my story with so many people while raising funds and awareness for eating disorder prevention and recovery support. Furthermore, I had the privilege of sharing the speaking podium with my amazing mother who spoke about recovery and the experience of a parent of a child with an eating disorder....
A Beautiful Mind, an Under-Toad, and Constant Vigilance.

A Beautiful Mind, an Under-Toad, and Constant Vigilance.

Spoiler Alert! This post contains plot information from A Beautiful Mind. It is an amazing movie! If you have not seen it, go watch it and then come back to read this post.     A Beautiful Mind, an Under-Toad, and Constant Vigilance.   In the movie A Beautiful Mind the main character, John Nash, sees characters that are his schizophrenia manifested in “human” form as hallucinations that only he can experience. It takes John (and his audience) awhile to realize that these seemingly real figures are actually figments of his imagination. These people he sees and has complex relationships with have been created by his mind to cope with his reality. Towards the end of the film Nash says, “I still see things that are not here. I just choose not to acknowledge them.” With these words Nash is showing not only that he has developed an awareness of the hallucinatory figures but also that he now understand that he has the power of choice. John knows that although he may be unable to eliminate these characters from the landscape of his mind, he can choose whether or not to engage with them. He has realized that he can ignore the hallucinations; he can deny his demon’s power.   I have a character in my life similar to John Nash’s hallucinatory friends. His name is Ed. He is like a shadow I never asked for, who burgeoned in my late teens and attached himself to me for life. Mostly, Ed is a voice of abstract thoughts and beliefs. However, when I imagine him in a physical form he...
BODY DYSMORPHIA

BODY DYSMORPHIA

  It’s normally dark outside when I look in the mirror naked. Even though my pre-work or pre-bedtime brain is jumbled with sleepiness and fatigue it can still lie to me through the reflective piece of glass before me.   This morning, sticky thoughts of body negativity wash over me with the warm water in the shower and I feel trapped.   I feel trapped in my own body.   I want to wriggle out of this skin that I loved just yesterday; I want to hide from this home-turned-prison. The desire to run away, just for a moment, from the uncomfortable situation that is body dissatisfaction seeps into my being. I want to look away from the too-bright florescent light glowing around the curves of my waist and the non-gap of my thighs…but I can’t. I wish I could love it—this body I know is beautiful to everyone else—but right now I just want to scream. I just want to change it. I can almost see the words—gross, imperfect, not enough, incompetent, weak, pathetic, worthless, ugly—sliding down my body like the beads of water slipping down the steam-streaked mirror facing me. These slimy words are like roll-on tattoos that ooze deeper and deeper into my skin the more I fight to scrub them off.   How do I escape? ~   Body Dysmorphia: anxiety about one’s appearance and a distorted view of how one looks.   I didn’t think body dysmorphia was a part of my eating disorder concoction. Even when I pinched the skin on my elbows and cheekbones at the worst of my anorexia, even when...