Friday, December 31, 2010

Please, Be Strong

With 2011 quickly approaching, I realize how eventful 2010 was. In retrospect, my life compared to now is so dramatically different. I thought it would be interesting to construct a list of a lot of the key events that happened in 2010. (This is a really fucking long post, so brace yourself).
(Photos taken by Nikki on Christmas Eve, click on the picture)
  • Treatment and recovery; I have completely altered my life by accepting and embracing recovery from my eating disorder. It shaped my character, changed and bettered my perspective, and gave me insight I had never possessed before. The ugly, resilient, stubborn person my anorexia transformed me into is so distant. It's surreal to think I could ever be so critical of myself and other people, mean, uncompassionate, and not satisfied. Some qualities that were exacerbated in my sickness are still with me, such as my perfectionism and my determined and ambitious nature, however they are just not as extreme.
  • Meeting new, life-long friends; in treatment, I met the most amazing people who I still continue to maintain a relationship with to this day. I also found my lost-long sister, Kalaija. If you have been a longer-time follower of my blog, you'll know her for I often talk of her and post our photography collaborations. During the summer, she visited me in California and I visited her in Oregon (how ironic that the best of friends are separated my hundreds of miles). She is one of the best friends I've ever had. I love you sissy. My recovery has also strengthened the friendships I had beforehand and I spend more time with them for I no longer isolate myself.
  • I've had a lot of transitions in regards to school and where I lived. When I was admitted to treatment, I lived there for a little over a month before I was on partial (meaning I went home to sleep and to treatment during most of the day). I decided to stop living at my dad's house--my parents are divorced and I used to switch houses--because I felt isolated from most of my friends. I couldn't go to my traditional high school when I was in inpatient care so I had to do a charter school which required little effort compared to my stimulating and demanding honor courses I was accustomed to. Upon leaving my first treatment center and transferring to another, I began an independent study program where I would go to the school about once a week to take a test (I would do all the course work online). I successfully completed my second semester of freshman year a little over a month before my friends did. I am currently attending my original high school.
  • Being able to experience life without any restraints or limitations. (I've noticed a lot of the monumental events of this year have been related to recovery from my eating disorder so bear with me, for it has made a huge impact on my life). I've done so many new things, such as visiting places I've never been, eating at restaurants, going on lovely adventures with my friends and family, ect. I love my life as it is now.
  • I had the best summer of my life. I cannot recall a summer where I wasn't burdened with my disordered eating habits and tendency to isolate myself because I felt inadequate. I traveled, discovered my passion for photography, had new experiences, met new people, and did an assortment of crazy, bizarre things.
  • Discovered my affinity for Star Wars. Changed my life. I'm honestly not even joking.
  • Rediscovering myself. I'm trying to figure out who I really am. What I like, what I want to do with my life, who are the people I want to surround myself with, ect. I'm reconnecting with art, fashion, music, writing, photographing, reading- my passions.
  • Finally, I'm beginning to accept myself and my life for what it is. I have lost everything. Because of that, I no longer take for granted what I have and I appreciate every aspect, even if it's negative. I'm not an optimist, but there's no point in being a pessimist when life is so full of wonders and beauty.
I have created a video with my memories of 2010 (happy memories mind you, I have decided not to put pictures from pre-treatment). It's long, but it's basically the epitome of the happiest times of the year :)
Now, for my goals for 2011. They're rather vague and some of them will probably not be accomplished by the end of next year (they're on-going life goals), but here they are:

-Continue to maintain recovery (Probably the biggest and most important.)

-Be nicer; compliment people, be respectful, compassionate. Ask questions/show interest in other people and their passions/hobbies/ect. People get the wrong idea of me. I'm introverted and sometimes shy when I'm in positions where I don't really know people, making me rather unapproachable and seem aloof. However, that's not the case at all. I have social anxiety that I'm trying to work through and I hate it. I hate being misperceived. This doesn't mean being best friends with everybody but simply being more interactive. I can't keep hiding. I have to learn to let go and not care about people's judgment.

-Get a job and save, save, save. I'm turning 16 on January 11th. :)

-Continue to do art- draw, photography, blog, ect.

-Learn to paint. I'm awful at painting. I got really nice paint brushes and acrylic paint last year for Christmas and I haven't even used them!

-Learn to love myself; self-security and confidence. This is a goal I probably have to work on throughout my entire life. I may never be 100% confident and comfortable with myself but if I can at least get to 95%, that would be good enough for me.

-Write and read more. I'm going to put aside time for things I love to do even though school and homework are both pretty time consuming.

-Pursue what I love and disregard those who try to stop me or mock me. I'm pretty good about this but I know I can be better. Sometimes, I feel ashamed of the things I love. Like Star Wars. I've already gotten shit about my affinity for my nerdy obsession from my friends. I'm sure there will be people who will always judge me, no matter what. But I don't even want to care anymore.

-Get back into fashion/sewing/designing. I've already slowly eased myself back into the fashion world and I have been designing a lot lately. I need to start my sewing classes again. I haven't taken them since I left for treatment.


Anonymous said...

What a lovely post. I wish you all the luck for 2011, and hope it's as prosperous as you want it to be x

nicole ...given said...

wow i love your blog. your pictures are amazing!

Maddie M. said...

Love, love, love. : )

Kat said...

i battled anorexia this year. i developed it after a long history of extreme anxiety and depression along with body dismorphic disorder.

i know exactly what you might've been feeling and might be feeling now. it's shaped my personality too, and although i regret it, i wouldn't change the past..

be strong, cassidy. you're stunning and amazing and worth everything.

Miss Becky said...

Cassidy you are lovely. You're perfect just as you are, because you listen to your heart. I love how you've liberated yourself from your fears, and how you're so aware that it's a long journey but you're "in for a penny, in for a pound". I've never painted anything in my life except the walls of my home, but I've registered for this class -

which begins the end of January. If you're game, check it out. What do we have to lose, right? I'm far beyond the good opinion of others, so I'm taking the leap because it's something I've always wanted to learn.
Your photos are fantastic btw.
I'm hoping this coming new year brings you so much light, joy, and love that you can hardly stand it. Namaste.

Miss Snow said...

I really love your photos! I hope 2011 brings you much more of the happiness you deserve x

daisychain said...

Happy new year beautiful girl, I hope 2011 brings you nothing but the best x

Haru said...

Happy new year!!
The picture is just beautiful x
Thanks for your lovely comment on my blog!!
Please follow if you like it xx

Haru x

Izzy said...

Love your photography! Hope you visit back :) Follwoing!

Fleur said...

your profile says: i just want to be lovely.
but, my dear cassidy, you really ARE! just by showing these great pictures and sharing these wonderful events!
i wish you a magical 2011!

Anonymous said...

These photos are gorgeous! Great color!


Summer said...

You are so mature for your age. And you are perfect!
Happy New Year doll!!!!


Anonymous said...

Eating disorders are tough. I wish you all the best in 2011!

Audrey Marie said...

happy new years - cheers to 2011! hope it is the best year yet for you.

My name is Renée. said...

Beautiful resolutions, hope 2011 will bring you a lot of happiness :)

JeanneS said...

when i first saw this post to be honest i said "oh my i cant read all this"

but i did and i have to agree with every single goal you set but mostly with this one:

Learn to love myself; self-security and confidence.

i really hope you will get to this^^

happy new year :D

Becky-May said...

what a great post! best of luck in 2011 i hope all your wishes come true!


The Flower Girl


Becca. said...

love love love these photos!

thankyou for the comment on my blog :)

Anonymous said...

Beautiful pictures!

Béracha said...

What a lovely post, i hope you'll reach all your goals!
Those pictures are so pretty!

yuki said...

Happy new year!
Great photos!

blivbook said...

Beautiful sunset pictures!

Cheers, B & Liv
B L I V B O O K: darling&diva ♥

Mary Lee said...

these are such gorgeous pictures! really love that camera :) now following

hope you'll visit/follow

Nikki said...

Oh my, what a year for you. I'm so glad you are in a good place right now. Eating disorders are a tricky one, especially in high school. I grew up in the dance world and we were surrounded by it and very critical of our bodies.

If I could go back and tell myself anything at your age I would say: Everyone is so worried about themselves, they're not looking at you or judging you as harshly as you're judging yourself. I still have to remind myself of that.

Here's a to a healthy and happy 2011!

Kimia Kline said...

happy new year to you! and what an awesome idea to put together a video of the year in photos :)

Daydream Lily said...

Cassidy this is my first time on your blog but it is lovely and I really loved reading about your year and how far you have come. I hope you can achieve everything you put your mind to in 2011 and that is a great eyar for you.



AMY said...

I'm a new follower!
Love your blog and your writing!
You are Amazing and Beautiful!
Found you thru Miss Becky and the Inspiration Award.
Amy's Life @

I am 38 and being called a bitch would hurt and upset me just as much!

Haylee said...

You are 15?? Are you kidding me right now? Wow I am totally surpised. By the way you write, your photography, your creativity, all of it made me think you were way older than 15! Geeze if you're this incredible now, I can't even imagine what you are going to accomplish later on.

The Clip Cafe said...

I loved your post too - am new to your blog (via shaking the tree) and wish you all the best for this new year - Wow you are only 16? A strong person you are and focused. Blog hugs xx

ADELE said...

Happy new year :)
I discovered your blog via Daydream Lily, I really love it ! Your photos are really cool.