Feeling: LIKE IT’S TIME TO BE HONEST
OK. Truth time.
First, a disclaimer. What I’m about to disclose is in no way a bid for attention; in fact, I would prefer if people did not ask me questions or bring it up when seeing me in person, because I just won’t be able to deal with it.
For as long as I can remember, I have been an immensely disordered eater. Future blog posts will expose more on this, but for now I’m only going to share the present.
A few months ago I jumped on the Isagenix bandwagon and at the end of my cleanse I wrote a Facebook status admitting I am a bit funny when it comes to food and my body. One of the hardest things I’ve ever done, I felt a bit of relief on owning that dark part of my life. And it kick started a change.
I refer to it as ED. I don’t want to go into some of the unhealthy acts I undertook/take or just how it affects me, but ED absolutely controls my day to day living. From my first waking thought to my last before sleep, how skinny I am and how much I weigh is a constant on my mind and drives all that I do. It’s funny; usually the healthier I look, the more turmoil I’m facing in my mind. I know I don’t look like an absolute rake and you wouldn’t see me and be like, “EW that girl is anorexic,” but often those suffering the most are the ones that look relatively normal.
I’ve always hidden under the facade of “vegan” or claimed that foods make me ill. I say I get migraines from dairy or that gluten makes me sick and technically it’s not fully a lie; my head hurts with immense guilt on eating what I consider a “no no” food, and I feel sick with myself. Sometimes I can be in a conversation with someone and I’m not even there. I’m nodding, smiling and contributing, but inside I’m adding up calories and working out how much exercise I need to do to get below my daily allowance.
Ten months living in Australia had me gain a bit of weight. (The party lifestyle and constant grazing at my job took it’s toll). On returning home, I got heaps of “You look so well!” And “You look healthy!” comments. I was devastated. To a person without ED in their lives, such remarks would be taken in delight. But I took it very negatively. I was weak. I had no self control. I was disgusting.
I started avoiding people I hadn’t seen in awhile so I wouldn’t have to hear more of these comments. I slipped back into old habits, which brought further self shame and disgust. I felt I was losing myself, losing my sparkle, and I hated it.
Joining the gym and getting rather addicted to exercise again, along with only allowing vegetables and fruits to pass my lips saw me shed a few kgs, then Isagenix took off a further 4. I was back! And I was happy. Although day to day was still turbulent, the skinny comments started back up and I was ecstatic.
Then one day, it was like a surge of truth took over. I’m 23 and my body isn’t so resilient anymore. Heavilly restricting calories while forcing myself to do strenuous cardio on the daily is starting to take it’s toll. I’m tired, irritable, and food is all I think about. Moving back home for a few months meant tensions being revived with my parents, especially my mum. It’s the one thing that causes a chasm between us, with tears, harsh words and frustration the norm. The rare occasions I sit down and have dinner with my family it’s always a strain with me only eating broccoli and tomatoes. And it’s been going on for years and years.
A few close friends of mine who know the extent it affects me have been voicing concerns again of late. Telling me I need to sort my shit out, I can’t live like this forever, yada yada yada. I’ve always laughed it off in the past, tossing it aside, but suddenly I agree with them.
Aside from three random ones, I haven’t had my period in more than four years. I have always laughed this off as a plus; no need to buy tampons or go through it once a month! But now I’m a bit concerned myself. I want to have a family one day, I want my own kids. Has the selfishness in me wanting to be skinny maybe taken this option away from me? It makes me want to cry.
Another major thing occurred recently which made me realise how sick I actually am. My mum started attending many more classes at the gym, started eating a bit cleaner, and lost 4kg. She looks fantastic and I’m so proud of her. But there is an ugly, sadistic part too that is jealous. Absolutely out of my mind with envy. I want to lose another 4kg. I want my clothes looser on me. I want people to comment that I’ve lost more weight. It’s sick. It’s disgusting. And I’m so so ashamed.
So part of me being here is like my own personal rehab. Yes, the foods are all completely organic with no sugar or meat at all, and I pass up on the lentils, the rice and the naan bread, but I’m having to have three meals a day. Leaving my running shoes back home means I can’t run and run and run every single day and completely run myself to the ground. Being made to sit and meditate and self examine means confronting things I’ve pushed aside for years.
I don’t know a life without ED. I don’t think I ever will. But I hope to unleash his clutches on me enough that it doesn’t control every waking moment (and often those asleep too) every single day. It’s ruined relationships, events, times that are meant to be pleasant and fun. I want it to stop.
This has been a massive step for me to post. I’m actually quite terrified about pressing “upload”. But I’m realising now that sometimes you need to be open and admit in a bid to better yourself. And I hope that it may actually help anyone else that needs it too.