I woke up this morning thinking to myself “how long could I go before I resigned to stepping on you?”. I remember all to well the feeling of seeing the numbers and either feeling elated that the number said something I wanted or that it wouldn’t and I would punish myself for not being a good girl and doing as the Voice told me to. Well, as this morning would have it, and after I went to the bathroom and being naked (you will never catch me weighing myself in clothes or without not having been in the bathroom first), I stepped on you. I knew before you told me, that I had lost 2 more pounds, which brings me to 5 pounds out of a total of 29 left to go. I was elated.
I’ve been keeping an online diary of my food intake and exercise. I started with primarily just recording my food and what I drank. I found myself writing “what am I doing wrong?” and “why isn’t this weight even moving?”. Although I have heard you whisper at me, my Wise Mind would stand in front of you, to challenge you. It wasn’t til I started recording did I realize that I wasn’t even eating enough. I was barely making 1000 calories and the minimum that I am required is 1200. My water intake was between 4 to 6 glasses a day. I always thought I was doing well, faithful to recording, never thinking you have been here this whole time, just quieter than I remember, but you have held the reigns most of my life, sometimes I saw it, most clearly not.
As the days, weeks and months came and went, nothing was really said or done to keep you at bay. I never put two and two together. I never saw your strength and power creeping to where you are now.
I kept fearing this strength that I thought I, ME, had you under control, under my thumb; that all I had to do was distract myself and your Voice would simmer down. Yet like a volcano, you kept bubbling and creeping like lava does slowly and yet stronger each time you got closer to the top.
I’ve been so angry that my weight until the last week has not shifted downwards, that the self fulfilling prophecy of being obese (as I have been termed and with embarrassment and disgust I sit temporarily),my highest weight being 174 pounds. I have heard you getting louder and louder in my mind, the Voice stronger and stronger. Chastising me for being fat, making fun of me for being one of the “fat girls”, that I will never lose the weight now because I am not a young girl, I am a middle aged woman and with that it is because I had to have a hysterectomy, but that doesn’t matter to you. All you see is my flaws and the expectations of me haven’t changed. If anything you push harder now than before.
My deepest core of who I am is weak to you. I am constantly thinking about you, am I going to have a good day because the scale is going down or am I going to punish myself because You are going to be angry that the number on the scale went up?
No one understands that it is NOT as simple as “tossing you away”, or to rely on your clothes as a way to see how you are doing. I’ve done both, neither stick. The scale, that number, that obsession to know whether I have done well or not, my self esteem hinging every day on what the scale says.
My body has been my vessel, I have used it to “get” me what I have wanted at that time, but I have also been abused as a result of where I have had to use my vessel.
Does the cycle end? Does someone who is anorexic truly go “into recovery”? I would have to say no, because even when I thought I had you beat, you tricked me into thinking I had won. That I had won that piece of myself that I have been yearning for, only to realize I have never had that piece at all.