For some reason that I’m unsure of, tonight feels lonely. I’m not alone, but I feel that way with all the thoughts in my mind.
My routine is becoming more organised. I now have certain dance classes and support groups I attend. Lists, as always, are my friend. I write down my weekly plans, as well as silly to do’s and enjoy crossing them off.
Aside from food thoughts tonight, my brain is circling on unanswerable questions.
If I get the benefit, how much will it be?
If I don’t get it, when and where could I realistically work (health and time wise) as a temporary measure in order to pay for the classes etc that I need to keep doing so I’m still working towards getting another job in the industry?
Am I doing the right thing by signing up to try something new in January? What if my strength lets me down?
What if I don’t get better?
What if I fail? At getting better, in my career, in life?
Does anyone have any answers? People at the back? Anyone?! No… well, just me on my own then. Seriously speaking, I know I can’t answer these questions right now. Nobody can! I’d just like to know what’s coming and whether I can handle it, but life just isn’t like that.
For a while I tried to stop food planning in a book; instead I just added calories up rather than keeping a log of what the foods were that created the total.
This evening I’ve planned tomorrow’s food in a notebook. My god it feels good. I just feel in control. I know that in reality that means nothing, as I could still not follow my plan when tomorrow comes! But I know I won’t. If I stick to my plans- written form or calculated on my phone, I don’t have to feel any extra stress.
Eating disorders are tricksters aren’t they? It controls me. I don’t want to only feel in control of life when I feel in control of food, but I feel compelled to give in and plan.
I am someone who wants to please people. I like things to happen smoothly, without conflict or disorganisation. I hate admitting when things are wrong, and I am hardly ever able to be one hundred percent honest about my ed issues.
So, here goes the honesty:
-I am unbelievably grateful for the opportunity I have right now: to train as a dancer and performer. I have dreamt of this since childhood, and now it is a reality. I love that my classes are almost all things I am very passionate about, and I appreciate how lucky I am to have the chance to do a job I actually enjoy. But, this means being in a girl dominated, body focused environment. I HATE how frequently people talk about food, body shapes and ed’s- especially as a lot of what is said is inaccurate! My eating disorder finds it challenging to be in a bubble where people don’t know what goes on in my head… granted, many people at home didn’t know either, but most of them had known me my whole life, and on some level were aware.
-I hate how confused I feel about my own body. I have literally no idea whether what I see is distorted or normal, which makes me enormously paranoid.
-I hate some of the people I live with in my student house.
-I hate that the end of my tether never comes, as in there is always a worse mood, worse anxiety, worse physical feelings..
-I hate how isolated I am at times. I never feel like a normal teenager.
-I hate the stress I am under at the moment. I can’t really talk about it whether ruining my anonymity, but there are too many things for me to get done in 2 days, and I wish it was done already….
Venting over. Never really say these things. I just go with the flow and take it out on myself afterward.
I look, obsess, analyse at it all the time, yet my perception of myself is constantly questioned by those around me. I feel my bones, I take every measurement I can, I perpetually compare myself to people, and so it is hard to believe that the view of my body I have created in my mind is wrong….
I have a notebook which I write in multiple times a day, in order to track food, body measurements and exercise etc.. it is my obsession. This evening I have got a new notebook and I have started writing in it (old one was full) which is what has got me looking back and thinking about how my body has changed.
Emotion-wise, today has been pretty rough. I was sat with my family in the pub for lunch. Nobody was making me eat, but my incredible hunger was fighting with my ed. I wanted to eat, but at the same time I wanted to stay empty. The hunger made me unable to think properly and the social eating scenario made me anxious before I even thought about maybe trying to eat something. I ran out and had a panic attack, then walked down the road with tears streaming down my face. I felt angry for not fighting the ed and eating- like I had let myself down, and I also felt hugely upset that my ed controls me so much. A lot of the time I’m able to imagine that I am in control of it, as I avoid so many situations which challenge its “rules.” It’s one thing when it leaves me feeling a state, but today was worse because my parents and siblings just had to sit there with me unable to form a sentence before I ran out. I just feel stupid I guess.
I don’t want a casual lunch with my family to be an impossible task; however I don’t want to confront the issues that make it one until I have justified it by losing more weight. A few months ago I was proud of myself for being able to understand and articulate my problems, but I don’t seem to be able to go any further than it. If I’m not doing anything positive with that knowledge then what the hell is the point?
I really couldn’t say whether or not I want to get better. Ambivalent isn’t even the word- as I know every ed sufferer feels that at times- I am just so utterly lost.
That was the advice I got given today, and I guess it is right.
My problem is that while I am always getting better at being articulate and open about my issues, the disorder is still there. I am still fixated on food and weight control as a way of controlling my body and my life in general. I am always fearful of others thinking I have gained weight when I go home/ come back for a new term, and so lose more to try to prevent people from commenting. A big part of me wants to be ill forever, and there are very few moments when I am 100% determined to be recovered. I am fighting a constant battle against myself, in a place where most people don’t have a clue anything is going on.
Today I was more tired, more cold & more stuck in my own head than usual (I’ve eaten 1200 calories less than what I need to maintain, which the disorder bit of my brain is over the moon about….) and so I couldn’t stop worrying when I thought someone had seen me eat something that I’d never tell anybody I’d eaten usually.
Part of me feels so silly for speaking to them and explaining that I was so guilty that I spat it out anyway, but saying the words “I can’t eat things like that because I’m afraid of becoming fatter or being perceived as greedy” made me feel like I’ve reminded them that I am empty and clean of horrible food that could ruin all of my control. I obviously realise that they don’t think like me and therefore don’t care, but I do.
Since moving here, I have had 4 bulimic “incidents” during which I have binged and purged, but those 4 days aside, I have been my usual anorexia obsessive control freak about food. I know that nobody here will ever fully understand what it is like to have an eating problem, but sometimes I just have to say the crazy things in my head, just so they stop whirring around my brain for a while. It can be hard,no, it IS hard. Even when I’m writing on here, where nobody even knows me personally, I am keeping secrets. That’s what ED’s do best: hide.
There is one very scary thought playing on my mind right now: not knowing whether or not I will have the funding to continue studying next year.
Getting a place at a good performing arts school is massively competitive, and after managing it last year, I’m terrified that money will stop me carrying on. I work hard, I have passion & I have got good marks so far….how is it fair that the government gives university students with poor grades a loan for a degree, but no loan for the institution I am at?
I hate that this situation is so out of my control. It is just so so so unfair and unsettling. I really hope that a solution appears, because this is what I am supposed to be doing. I don’t want to do anything else with my life, and I shouldn’t have to now that I’ve come this far…
On a happier note, I have held myself together (sort of) despite all this crap going around in my head today.
It’s true isn’t it? Whatever happens in life, the opposite is always somewhere around the corner: something sad is counterbalanced by something good.. just like starving eventually leads to eating. It has only happened 3 times in 10 days. but that is 3 more times than for several months. I hate it when this happens. It goes one of 2 ways: back to bulimia, or back to restriction (the latter is the more likely in my current circumstances)
Whatever, it doesn’t even matter. Nothing matters when my whole life feels, no, IS out of control. I can’t do anything. I only think about food. My studying is all up in the air, and it’s ,money related so I can’t even sort it out.
Nothing is in control. Food isn’t even in control. Everything feels pointless and I’m just willing that tomorrow I won’t eat anything I’m not allowed. I have nothing- not thin, not got a plan for the next academic year, not got anything that I can focus on that is in my control.