It started slowly and picked up pace quickly. Starting with the little things, working out more, and more, and more. Till I was still unsatisfied. Then it turned to eating. Eating less and less. Wanting to rip my “fat” off my body, to tear away all of the skin. Eventually, it turned into endless hours of working out but never having enough energy. Counting every single chip. The “dark age” of my life lasted, long but short. Like I mentioned it started slow. With me nothing more but not doing anything. It went on like this for almost a year. Before I was working out day in and day out; before I was eating less than one hundred calories a day. Before, I was crying over how I looked not talking to anyone. Wondering why I was like this.
We always prepare a first aid kit for our physical injuries when we go on a camping trip. What if those of us who have experienced symptoms of mental illness had a way to prepare a first aid kit or safety plan to meet those needs?
There are many different types of safety plans but one for my depression and anxiety was the one I never imagined I would need and I wish was explained to me. The plan I probably put the most thought into was the birth plan for my first child. Specifics such as what music to have on, what to have as a focus object, not to have drugs if possible were thought about and discussed with both my husband and my doctor. I will say, the plan was mostly followed although, I did take a little something for the pain.
The other type of plan that comes to mind is a fire safety plan for your house and family members. What do you do if the fire comes near you? What are the alternate ways out of the house: windows, doors? And where to meet up once you are out?
I’m back, and today I chose to write about the road to recovery from my eating disorder (ED). Who’s with me?!
Negative coping skills related to ED’s are in one word, exhausting. The behaviors, rituals, and all the thinking about food and my body consumed a large part of every single day of my life for the better part of an entire DECADE. Over time, I realized that I wanted to live life again – in the present. I wanted meaningful relationships and experiences – I wanted to laugh and remember the days where I just listened to myself, not my ED voice – I wanted to live life for me. And most of all, above anything, I wanted to be free. Liberated.
My eating disorder voice
My eating disorder (ED) started when I was a freshman in college; I was 18 years old at the time. For the many years that followed, my eating disorder and I were on-and-off-again allies for the most part – but even through the “off” times, I continued to listen to my ED voice. Let me begin by explaining what my ED voice is – its basically an ongoing dialogue in my head that doesn’t let up. When I want a dessert, for example, it may say, “But Jamie. You don’t truly want that. You’ve restricted so well today, don’t mess it up now. Put that shit back on the shelf RIGHT THIS INSTANT!” I try to tell that voice to “shut the fuck up” whenever I hear it, and more times than not, I am triumphant.(more…)
I’m asleep, and dreaming of food. Foods that I want to eat, mainly. Lots and lots of them. Ice cream. Cake. Cookies. I wake up, and my stomach churns as I recall everything I think I ate during the night. Holy shit, I think, if I truly ate all of that, I am going to have to begin to plan my day around food much more meticulously than I normally would. Thanks, eating disorder, for making my day so frustrating and exhausting. Already. Damn you, eating disorder! (more…)