So I'm nostalgic. No Doubt. And I'm first of all, writing this on my half birthday (Yes, I celebrate half-birthdays.) And I can't help but take time in realizing what all has transpired in the last year of my life. It's been a wild and crazy year at that!
This time last year, I had just finished 8-years of Nutrition Education & Research, was 6-months into earning my credentials (RD-woot! woot!), had just received my Master's degree in Nutrition Science, moved back to Dallas days after, and was beginning my own private practice centered around eating disorder recovery, disordered eating, intuitive eating, HAES, and body image restoration. It was a lot, and I was beyond excited about the journey ahead, but let's be honest, I still had a lot to learn.
I didn't know what it was really like to be in private practice, I didn't know if moving back would allow me to be immersed in the ED community here, or how long it would take to take a dive into the real work. All the work you do to learn, educate, and gain opportunities to shadow other ED professionals is nothing like being immersed in the deep waters with your clients, yourself. And let's be honest, it's never looked 'perfect', and it never will. I'm constantly engaging in the same coping skills that I encourage clients to use. I have to work on reframing my expectations to being more realistic. The same qualities that can be my biggest strengths, can also be my biggest weaknesses.
I am an optimist, but within that optimism is goal-setting, again, both great things, but I can forget sometimes where my clients are at and shoot goals that are too far into the future. Or I can feel not as present in sessions, or I can catch myself focusing too much on having 'the right words' instead of just holding space. These aren't flaws though, these are just things that I'm aware of. Areas I can still grow in. Everyday I work harder to become more present with my clients. More open to hearing their stories. More understanding of how we can (together) navigate a healthy relationship with food and our bodies.
I made this post a little short, mostly because I'm so in awe of how amazing this last year has been, how beautiful I know that the future will be, and mostly how amazing this inner work really is.
This last year has be wild, unexpected, and beyond a shadow of a doubt more than I could have imagined in my wildest dreams. Truly the work that God has done in my life is incredible, and I can only imagine what's in store just upon the horizon when I have open hands and an open heart to wherever He wants to take me.
Much Love Friends!
Tess M Patterson MS RD LD