Tag Archives: eating disorder

Overheard

I was standing in line at the DMV and the lady next to me was renewing her license. She was asked to look over her information.

“It’s correct except I don’t weigh 50kgs anymore.”

My ears started flapping, but I prevented myself from turning to stare at her. No one wants to be gawked at like a freak on a Tuesday afternoon.

“Ok how much do you weigh now?”

“I think, maybe 60kgs?”

She doesn’t look self conscious. She doesn’t giggle shyly or hang her head ashamed. No one can say for sure, but to an onlooker it seems like she gained 10kgs and that is just fine. Normal. Unremarkable. Not noteworthy.

I have never put my correct weight on my driver’s license. I always lowball – within REASON.

At ballet school we were taught to subtract 10lbs from our actual weight when asked for an audition. As a rule of thumb I have continued to do this because it seems REASONABLE. Reasonable to lie about my weight because no number is ever really acceptable.

Today I went to get a cup of coffee in the mall and a shop employee was hob nobbing with the barista. No one can say for sure, but she looked like she was afflicted with the rex. I had admired her skeletal like arms as she handed me my coffee with trembling hands and a smile that lit up her pale, hollowed out face.

The shop employee was showing the barista his lunch. She looked at it like a maniac. Like she was fascinated and revolted at the same time.

“I’m not going to eat all of it now,” he informed her and her co-coffee worker. “I guess I’m telling you so that you don’t laugh at my fat ass.”

The other barista comments on how she likes to tell herself she will save food for later and then eats it all in one sitting instead. I’m stirring my coffee slowly, deliberately eavesdropping.

The rexy barista hasn’t moved. She is in the same spot still transfixed by this lunch that has wandered in to high jack her shift.

He gets his coffee from skinny and skinnier behind the espresso machine and looks at his lunch with unbridled delight.

“I’m only 15lbs away from my goal weight anyway.”

I pick up my coffee and stroll out into the banal abyss of mall. I take my extra 15 pounds of “baby” weight with me. My extra 15 pounds of sleepless nights, more calories for breastfeeding, anxiety, bad day with the babies, hormonal, postpartum, non exercising excuses, sneaky glasses of wine and a few too many chocolate binges of baby weight.

Advertisements
Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Undefined

I am triggered by everything:

A photo of dancers I used to idolize when I was 16 and starving, desperate to be even half as skinny as they were and still are. I scroll past them. My brain does a double take. I back track. I scrutinize their emaciated arms, their collar bones, their sunken cheek bones. They are all smiles, superior in their anorexia, mocking me. Twenty years have gone by and they are still thinner than thin.

I see my reflection in an unsafe mirror…so that’s what thighs and hips and stomachs look like after two babies in quick succession – well mine anyway. A vast, mass of undefined lard, rolling and oozing and overflowing, fleshy like raw dumplings, doughy like unbaked bread, ever expanding…never ending. Never ceasing to amaze me in horror to fascinate me as I stare. “Is that really me?” I don’t recognize myself, this untamed, unmanageable, out of control lump. I don’t fit into my clothes or my brains neatly, compartmentalized boxes: bulimic ballerina has been replaced with fat stay-at-home-mum. Fat, frumpy, fleshy, unfit to be a mother or an anorexic.

I read an ED memoir a friend lends me. I stop. I put it away on a shelf where I cannot see it. I pick it back up a week later. It makes me remember that I used to purge just as easily as I breathed. After this long, would I even notice if it crept back in? If I slipped a couple of times that were more intentional than unintentional? After all, there are days where I seamlessly substitute my calories as I go. Latte? No, americano. Vegan mayo? No, mustard. Salad dressing? Not necessary. More pasta? No, more veggies. Two slices of toast? No, three quarters of one slice is more than enough for breastfeeding two babies. I shake so much, so often from hunger. I don’t get any thinner.

I don’t want to think of the other bad days where I unintentionally eat two muffins instead of one. When I eat half a bag of chocolate chips and then wonder why I’m carrying this “baby weight” 7 Months later. I’m surprised when these things happen. Half a packet of digestive biscuits later I am unsure where I went wrong. But I’ve never pretended to know so why start now?

Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Heartaches and Mistakes 

It has been a hard week. After the disastrous conversation with my boyfriend on Monday night about our future, we argued for 3 days. He was out of town and all our communication was via terse messaging.

At first I think he hoped it would blow over with a few “I love yous”, but I didn’t let it go. I stood my ground and told him it needed to be resolved.  After the shocking realization that our relationship was not where I thought it was and that we are not on the same page, I laid out everything. I addressed our ongoing issues with his absurd situation with the 2 mothers of his 2 children. I brought up his behavior of avoidance concerning the problems and how it all negatively impacts my life and therefore our relationship. I was as blunt and as harsh as I could be. I asked him why he would imagine I would want to stay indefinitely, without a commitment, in a situation that has cost me so much. I went into a lot of detail to which he responded in defense, of course. After 3 days I felt that the messages weren’t getting us anywhere, so I filed them away and stopped responding.

My anxiety was out of control for 3 days. I wondered about leaving him quite seriously.  I even found somewhere I could go live within 24 hours of the fight. I thought about the inevitability of the situation and my boyfriend never changing and that I have the nagging suspicion we will keep revisiting this same conversation. I wondered about my repeating habits and behaviors in relationships. I am mad at myself for the commitment I have made; for loving, giving and trusting too much.

In the end I starved and binged and purged and drank. There were no answers. Not from him or from the bottom of a toilet bowl where I heaved up anger and disappointment.

He came back from his trip last night. He wanted to hold me and kiss me and tell me he loved me. I tried not to cry. I wanted to push him away, but in the end I didn’t. I didn’t know how to tell him that I am still hurt and mad and that sex won’t fix that.

The world has tilted, we have shifted and I am not sure we can ever go back. It seems to me that this will be the beginning of the end. I want to give him the benefit of the doubt that he will do what he promised, but in my heart of hearts I know he will fail me. Just like the ones that came before, he will be no different in the end no matter how much he tells me otherwise.

I told him the fact that a question about our future blindsided him so badly and derailed us this abruptly was more telling than all the awful things he said.

I canceled our long weekend away in the mountains. I shed some bitter tears as I wept over the loss of something I was looking forward to so much. I had longed for a romantic, secluded escape together because we have never had one. I had even fantasized that it was when he would ask me to marry him. I was so sure that I would be going home with a ring on my finger that it seemed a likely choice it would be that weekend. Given that I have been waiting since Christmas for a proposal and that he told me on Monday night he had no timeline, wasn’t going to give me one because he feels “pressured” into marrying me and doesn’t want to make a promise he can’t keep, it is obvious that I need to stop believing in fairytales. I decided that I don’t want to invest the money and time into a weekend with someone who is not sure how they will feel about me in a year. As I wiped the disappointed tears away I realized that I will be home in four weeks time and will have a month to decide what my next step is.

Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Anxiety

Connections & Relationship between Anxiety and Eating Disorders

Often, it is the case that anxiety precedes an eating disorder. In struggling with severe anxiety, for instance, being able to control the aspect of one’s life, such as food, weight, and exercise, indirectly gives the suffer a false sense of control, which can temporarily relieve symptoms experienced due to anxiety. Now the man or woman has a dual diagnosis of an eating disorder and anxiety. These learned behaviors however, can inadvertently lead to the development of an eating disorder, such as anorexia nervosa or bulimia nervosa.

http://www.eatingdisorderhope.com/treatment-for-eating-disorders/co-occurring-dual-diagnosis/anxiety

https://www.psychologytoday.com/blog/when-food-is-family/201209/eating-disorders-and-social-anxiety

Tagged , , ,

A Day In The (Dysfunctional) Life Of

 

8am

Coffee, thyroid medication.

9am

More coffee, an hour at the gym with my foot in a cast.

11am

Celery and hummus.

1:30pm

More celery, more hummus, more coffee.

My coworker sits in my office and lectures me on eating (while he eats). He informs me that I will never have to wear a tutu and pink tights on stage again and therefore I should enjoy food. He mentions that I should get over my issues and I disagree telling him my demons keep me company.

“What do you want me to eat?” I ask as I shove celery down my throat and try not to gag.

“Bread,” he gestures with all of his Russian passion in the direction of my collar bones which seem to upset him. “It is so light; there is nothing in it.”

“I love bread so much. I dream about toast,” I confess like my soul depends upon it. It seems wrong to admit this; like I am betraying the wilting celery that is trying to nourish me.

“You need to eat some bread,” he is pleading with me now. “Good, grainy, dense bread.”

He is the devil. I shake my head as if to remove the picture of bread from my mind. He is always trying to get me to eat.

4pm

Dinner at a friend’s house: 4 plates of food, wine, cake. I sit at the table and start to sweat. Panic.

I will die of this feeling. I am out of control after restricting all day.

While they make coffee and dessert in the kitchen, I purge. The relief is instantaneous.

7pm

Fast food drive through on the way home from dinner:

2 veggie burgers, onion rings, 2 family size fries (to fill the hole in my heart where there should be a family). I sit in a parking lot as the rain pours down and I shake. I have found love on a Wednesday night. There is ketchup and comfort at the bottom of the brown, paper bag.

7:30

Purge, purge, purge.

8:30

Bubble bath and a conversation with my boyfriend on the phone: “I’m taking you out for your favourite Italian on Sunday night. Do you want to go on a picnic on Saturday? Maybe we could go to the mountains…I have some wine for Friday.”

I can hear the calories we are going to consume. I just want to lie in his arms and close my eyes and never eat again.

Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Emergency

I got rushed to hospital last night about 36 hours after surgery. I had an allergic reaction to the pain killers I was given as they were contraindicated with thyroid drugs and the surgeon didn’t pick up on it.

By the time I got to triage, I was shaking uncontrollably and felt like I was having a heart attack. I was nauseous and dizzy and having trouble breathing. The nurse got me a bed right away because my heart rate had spiked. She asked me if I had been eating when I took my pills. I had been in so much pain because I couldn’t metabolize the medication and it made me so sick that I hadn’t eaten in almost 24 hours. “You have to eat,” she admonished me as I lay on a bed. It is hard to explain to a nurse that I just hadn’t felt like it. I have actually lost my appetite since the surgery. I don’t even think it was my eating disorder despite wanting to restrict because I am incapacitated.

After 5 hours they had stabilized my vitals, given me a different narcotic pain-killer and re-bandaged my incision after checking for infection. Today I felt weak and exhausted. I slept for hours and didn’t eat until dinner time. I think I am feeling depressed now about being unable to do anything or go anywhere. I am still worried about how unfit and out of shape I will be after 6 weeks of no physical activity. Tomorrow I will weigh myself, standing on one foot of course.

Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Size Matters

Size Matters

I went clothes shopping today.

Everyone with ED knows how traumatic this is. I DO NOT try things on in the store. I pick out things in the size that I think I am and psyche myself up when I get home for the inevitable disappointment that is coming.

I picked out two pairs of pants in size 6 that looked like they would fit. Sadly one of them was actually a size 8 which was severely depressing to find out after I got them on and they fit. The other size 6 went on without difficulty. This time last year, I could get into a 2 (sometimes) or 4 so it is rather sad to know that I have gone back to a 6. I think the only reason that I haven’t slit my wrists tonight is because I knew I was heavier and I was anticipating the 6 not going past my knees. I am relieved even though I should be disgusted.

I bought about seven tops (they are usually a safer bet than pants). A couple of smalls fit. One was too small. One medium was too tight and one fit just right and one was too loose. I feel like Goldilocks. Just goes to show that sizes really are skewed. This time last year I could grab an extra small off the rack and know it would look good. I forgot how it feels to be thin. A workout top in a medium hung off me. Workout pants in a medium were too small to the point that it was revolting. I had the expected (disproportionate) reaction to each: joy and horror.

On the plus size side, I can still squeeze into many of my pants that I wore last year when I was 10-15lbs lighter (as a reminder). To be fair, there are two that are lying on my closet floor because I broke the zippers trying to wriggle into them. I only ever buy pants when I am skinny in a starvation phase and I refuse to buy bigger sizes when my weight goes up. I just walk around looking like a sausage roll and being uncomfortable. I am too terrified of buying bigger pants and admitting the truth that I spend my life denying. I am scared that a size 8 will become a size 10 will become a size 12.

I even sleep in too tight pants to remind myself to stop eating. Tonight I am eating salad and drinking wine. I was sure I was going to binge tonight from work anxiety and the reality of being a size 6. It might still happen. After all, size matters.

Tagged , , , , , , , , , , ,

Gym Obsession

Gym Obsession

If this is true, then my fat cries a lot but evidently it is not upset enough to move out.

Gym is my latest obsession. I am worshiping at the alter of thin – again. In pursuit of (skinny) perfection, I track my calories as penance and confess their consumption to anyone who will listen, in the hopes that I will be absolved. I still pay for my sins. The only good thing is that I seem to be bingeing and purging less. But this is still ED in it’s many forms. I cannot deny the truth. It is gospel and I am a believer.

Tagged , , , , , , , , , , ,

ED Humour

ED Humour

I just downed a bucket of pasta and am off to barf it up. I am sick enough to find humour in my eating disorder.

**Apologies to those who find this offensive. I believe it is better to laugh than to cry.

Tagged , , , , , , , ,
Advertisements