The past few weeks have been especially difficult, as noted in the previous post. Dressed in unnecessary layers, I race from my apartment to class, hoping to avoid eye contact with others. So far, recovery has been excruciatingly difficult as I've struggled with weight gain and acceptance; however, until recently, I've been fortunate as I've disguised the unsatisfied body with layers of clothing through the fall and winter months. Now, however, spring has approached and I must find other ways to cope with such insecurities. I am so easily tempted to revert to old behaviors, because it's what's most comfortable, and my head feels like it's about to explode. I know right from wrong, healthy from hazardous, and I know I possess the skills and tools to get through each moment. But when motivation is at its lowest, brain wiring tempts me to allow ED in. I am weary, and mentally exhausted. The thoughts have begun to occur more and more often, and I am scared. I want to want, again-- the ambivalence has begun to hold me back. I am trying not to shut down, trying to stay engaged and stay surrounded by positive influences. I am blessed to have such brilliant, beautiful people in my life, and I want nothing more than to genuinely appreciate their presence. But isolation comes easily for me, and sometimes I crave the loneliness I am so comfortable with. What's more, with loneliness comes the ironic appreciation for emptiness, and thus, numbness. When I am physically empty, I am able to numb out any stress and get closer to invisibility. I am reminded more than ever that I have an eating disorder-- the deadliest amongst all mental illnesses. And I know the facts. A study by the National Association of Anorexia Nervosa and Associated Disorders reported that 5 – 10% of anorexics die within 10 years after contracting the disease; 18-20% of anorexics will be dead after 20 years and only 30 – 40% ever fully recover. Though the statistics are traumatizing, part of me represses the truth and I get lost within the disorder. I am perturbed, and distraught by the thoughts that ruminate in my head, but like people watching, I need to let the thought approach, knowing it will vanish. Tears roll down my cheek, as I think of how exhausted and tempted I am to want out. It's no wonder I find myself ready to hide under the covers and sleep the night away, by 11pm.
Nonetheless, I continue to strive to attain the goal I constructed over spring break. I am desperately trying to stay consistent with my meal plans, though much of my stress arises from tricks of the mind, mirror and scale. In previous posts, I've mentioned my neighbor's luscious pie that would send any sweet tooth to heaven, and decided to try my own twist on the nearly perfect recipe.
Not too shabby for my first pie experience (and yes, I took this picture!)
And tomorrow, I will attempt to enjoy a quinoa cereal-- fresh fruit, oats and sliced almonds included
Despite experimentation in the kitchen, fear foods have made unappreciated appearances back into out of my current diet. Old habits die hard, I suppose, and I am terrified about going out to dinner tomorrow evening. Dear anxiety, please subside. Well, it's almost 11pm, time to hide from my demons.