Calm, is how I can describe today. I had a couple of coffees, fruit and a cookie. It’s almost 6pm, I should have eaten 2 meals by now but I can’t, don’t want to flip that switch in my brain. A yogurt is not just a yogurt it’s stepping on the accelerator and then the inevitable driving off the cliff. I avoided that by just not eating anything, so I’m safe, empty (the good kind).
My mum has placed an embargo on low fat/ sugar free food items- the horror of having to face full cream milk. I have to remind myself that I will survive not having aspartame filled beverages and that it’s OKAY to drink regular coke because people do drink that stuff and they’re not obese. Mum thinks I’m doing well-ish, yesterday I ate for show because she was home, she peeks into my plate, asks what I’m having, the subtle monitoring, I feel like a child.
On Saturday I went to a casting and that really derailed the “progress” I was making this past week, I was okay with skipping breakfast but having lunch at least… Celebrating small victories. Now I’m just not prepared to make that sacrifice. I can’t stop weighing and measuring myself, I want to stay the weight I was when I went to that casting on Saturday but at the same time I have to eat and be healthy, It’s fucked up! I have to stop this madness, I want life at the end of this nightmare.
I suppose modelling is not what I should be pursuing right now but if I quit my eating disorder wins and I’ll never know.
Ate an inadequate dinner of boiled veggies and meat then I panicked after eating yogurt, purged and now I’m a dehydrated,headache-y, ravenous mess. Mum is in the other room praying,I am so loved by her, my brother, my family, friends but I keep engaging in these sick and selfish behaviours that could kill me,unbearable guilt is eating me up inside. I am exhausted from all the lies.
Our demons are never our own at least not wholly, there are always loved ones who take partial ownership.. casualties of these personal afflictions of ours. My mother has suffered for years at the hands of my eating disorder, she has suffered by my hand. They all have.
I was diagnosed with anorexia on Saturday.
Another relapse, another crisis, another rock bottom, another mountain to climb.
I went to the ER on Saturday morning, I was too weak, bathing felt like climbing a mountain. They did routine checks and my blood pressure was too low 88/62 and because of that I had to be hooked onto IVs for hours. I felt so defeated just lying there, the mighty had fallen, the purging queen reduced to nothing but just another shivering body on a hard hospital bed in a tiny cubicle.
I can’t recall how may bags they pumped into me, I just know that I felt trapped as though I was being held hostage with no way of cutting myself loose.
Now I am back home and I am trying to eat, trying to be normal but I am failing. A hospital stay is not even enough to stop me from me from finding my stupid selfish hands at the back of my throat. I don’t deserve the love I get from my mother, so unconditional and irrevocable and what do I do, I keep perpetuating the same behaviours that landed me in a hospital bed. I am keeping down some food but not all, I have no problem with small meals it’s just that after eating something takes over me and I end up bingeing and purging…. undoing all the progress. I can’t flip a switch. It will take everything to undo and to unlearn all the patterns of destruction that i have been weaving for more than a decade. Unlearning has always been harder than learning.
I have to gain weight, I am so afraid.
The thing with broken dreams is that it hurts a little less each day but there are always those moments when you feel it all at once and your chest gets heavy and you feel like something is sitting on top of your lungs… you cry or don’t cry but the feeling is there, it’s there and it feels as though it will always remain with you.
A friend asked me today if I still was going ahead with my plans to study abroad and I just found myself aching over what never was. Last year I applied to study farther, I was supposed to study an MSc in business administration abroad, I got in and I found myself picturing this future that I thought would soon be mine but I was wrong. I thought I had found my “in” the doors had opened and I was leaving this god forsaken place but fate had other plans. The costs accumulated, tuition as an international student, accommodation, visa and a host of other items to the point that we couldn’t afford it… I refused to be selfish and put my mum through the stress of paying for more tuition when she had slaved to put me through undergrad, I myself have no money and no job and so just like that my dreams flew away.
I ended up enrolling for the programme that I am doing now which is a grad program but it isn’t an MSc but more like a gateway to an MSc this would have been avoided if I could afford the places I got into to which is why I am can’t focus fully on my studies- I was never supposed to navigate this particular curve I guess I should at least be thankful but that one ticket out of here I had gotten is gone now. It’s not too late, I could work and save up but I am so demotivated. Now is not the time to give up, what I decide right now will shape my future and whether my dreams will come true or not.. of that I’m sure. I have to find that determination buried somewhere within me.
Tonight I am not sad not happy either, just wandering around the house like a ghost. I woke up with no purpose and so my day has been without purpose as well. Unlike the past few months,this time I am trying, truly.
Cutting up vegetables for dinner and I thought how undeserving I am of them, because of the size I am there is no proof I cut these greens up every single night. I should be a lean mean machine but I am not, might as well say to hell with it and gobble up the mac and cheese mum is making but I can’t. I am denied the luxury of eating a filling meal well at least in front of people, even in secret bingeing is not that enjoyable. No amount of solitary delicious binges can ever equate with eating and retaining a wholesome meal enjoyed with family- I haven’t had that in over a decade, truly. I can only vaguely remember the feeling when I was 8 or 9 eating rice, chicken and various mayonnaise dressed salads without any guilt creeping in afterwards.
There is so much discomfort in this skin I am in, I can’t believe it’s mine. It feels as though something is attached to me or to my hips at least. Maybe it’s all an illusion and my body isn’t this massive. I looked at my reflection today on a window outside and I could not recognise this pudgy woman with chipmunk cheeks and fleshy knees. I thought to myself “oh come on” as if that would have made all the fat bits melt away.
It’s time for dinner and it’s time for the dance, mum looks at me with a talking eye that no longer pleads for me to put more on my plate but now says “I can’t believe you’re still doing this yourself”. In a way it is relieving, this “silent acknowledging” of my eating disorder as opposed to verbally addressing it every single meal time.
I don’t want to do anything, Since yesterday I’ve been a lazy bum doing nothing but watching TV shows on my laptop in bed bingeing on muffins and popcorn. I usually do things around the house cleaning etc but I can’t be arsed today, in a way I feel used.
When your whole family goes to work in the mornings and come back at night and you have no classes and you’re home most of the time you end up being the one who runs errands, I don’t have to if I don’t want to do these things but I do though I feel I am too nice sometimes I usually end up making everyone dinner everyday. I have this need to please people, to make their lives easier and secretly making it up to them for basically leading a secret life ED wise.
I am that daughter that irons her mum’s outfit for work tomorrow without being asked, goes grocery shopping, keeps everything organised, feeds the dogs, cleans the fridge, empties the trash, scours the bath tub etc. There’s this inner (not severe) OCD that just eats away at me. I literally go out of my way, I could be on the verge of collapsing but I persevere so that I get things done.
I usually spend hours in the kitchen making elaborate meals for my family, trying out different recipes but I never eat the food, I like to stand in the kitchen and imagine what it would be like to eat the meal that I’ll have cooked. That reminds me years ago I used to buy those mum magazines with plenty of recipes and pictures of delicious gourmet meals and delicious desserts, I’d read it from cover to cover staring and daydreaming about the food in the magazines. I was about 15/16 years old and I stopped at around age 17.
Anyway going to have pie for dinner then tomorrow restriction starts. I wish mum hadn’t bought me chocolate and a swiss roll that could derail my plan unless I throw it away tonight which I doubt I’ll do. I have a problem with throwing away food because that’s throwing away money but throwing it away in the form of purging is somewhat okay, ED logic is twisted.
What a nice day, watching football and series, eating fruit and not feeling guilty. I had 50 grams of popcorn during the match and oh my god I am so stuffed, seriously what kind of popcorn was that.
Afterwards I chilled in my room for a bit then mum came into my room and asked if it was okay if she sat on my bed for a bit. We talked for hours about a lot of stuff which was nice. She just told me it was now time for me to eat my dinner which slightly infuriated me because I am not a toddler but then again it’s totally understandable considering my ED. I fixed myself a plate despite feeling stuffed and I ate it, I can’t bear to see that look of hurt on my mum’s face when I refuse to eat. I can see how defeated she feels as a parent and I have been seeing that face for years and it haunts me. I make sure I eat my meals when she’s home even if I don’t want to because the feeling of hurting/disappointing her by not eating is worse than the guilt of having a belly full of food.
On another note, I finally finished my assignment on Thursday night and I submitted it on Friday morning. I just hope I am on the right track, I thought about emailing my supervisor but I was so clueless on everything I did not even know what to ask. I followed the instructions as they were and I am 60% confident. The assignment is worth 50% of my year mark and 15% of my final mark so yeah it’s totally not a big deal. The others are already in study groups helping each other but I seem to be the only one in the class who chose the particular topic I am researching, just my luck… at least I enjoy the topic it would have been awful if I had chosen a topic everyone is doing and the topic turned out to be a bore. I have another assignment due in 2 weeks worth 50% of my year mark and 15% of my final mark, woah the days should stop moving so fast.
So today I got a phone call from the place I applied to, I even wrote a suitability test and got interviewed and that was about 2 months ago, turns out I did not pass the suitability test but they said they want to give me another chance to re-take the test since the position I applied for is now open.
The lady asked me what I was doing right now and I told her that I am about to start studying again, she went on to ask me if I would be able to work at the same time and I told her I don’t think I would. Deep down I know I could definitely sort out my schedule and it’s not like I have to attend loads of lectures since it’s mostly research. I told her I will come in on Saturday to re-take the test.
Honestly, I am so indecisive right now. I could use the work experience and the exposure but in my heart of hearts I feel like this is not the place I want to work at. It’s a fashion retail store and I would be working as a management trainee. If I pass the test and get the job then what? Work until 6pm everyday for 6 days a week all the while trying to fit studying in there and then rise through the ranks in a fashion retail store? That just seems so bleak.
I am so confused right now. My studies are getting “in the way” of what could be a learning experience, that and my tendency to aim too high. In my mind I have this image in my head of where I would love to work… a shiny building as a business development intern sitting in my cubicle wearing a high waisted pencil skirt and a white blouse with a lot of ruffles and just doing a great job until I get a permanent position. Life does not work like that, I get it but it could if I wait for the right opportunity or maybe this is the right opportunity disguised as something not so promising.
I do not want to end up failing my courses after spending my mum’s money because of work pressure, I don’ t need that guilt on top of more guilt. I am certainly not those types of people who work 2 or even 3 jobs to put themselves through university, to do that requires some type of fortitude that is on another level. Some people handle these things better than others. If it were work vs some other thing I think I’d be able to handle it but my studies are involved and that always comes with a lot of anxiety. Looking back now I don’t even know how I made it through my undergrad with this acute anxiety.
I have decisions to make and I know that I am being a whiner, seriously… there are other people out there in worse dilemmas than I am in but even so, acknowledging it won’t make it go away or make it any less troubling.