Lost & Struggling to be Found
I am lost. Completely and unbelievably. I don’t know how to put into words the pull that this eating disorder has on me. I know the impact it is having on me, on my life, on my relationships, on my friendships, and on my job, but I cannot step away. Every day, I wake up with the intention of doing better, of engaging in recovery, yet every day I continue to engage in the same ritualistic behaviours that keep it alive.
The problem is now, I’ve even lost the reason as to why I’m staying in this. It started as a way to cope. Last May I was crippled by depression, and anorexia seemed to provide the answer. The answer that it was providing, I can’t remember, but what started with just a little cut back of food and a little more exercise spiralled. There have been so many times in my life I’ve tried to reengage with the eating disorder but after a few weeks I can’t be bothered, but this year it stuck. Maybe that shows just how vulnerable I was this time around, feeling like it was the only option to navigate this life.
That’s the thing though, what the hell is the purpose of this anymore? I always thought the eating disorder was here to give me purpose, focus, and to feel good about myself. But now I realise it was just a distraction. Worried about how much milk is on your cereal? Well, that’s good because there’s no way you can worry about the economic situation of the country. Obsessed with reading about what you’re going to eat for dinner? Excellent, no time to read the news. Concerned about gaining 50g or your top feeling slightly tighter than it did a month ago? Brilliant, no time to think about life. And that’s it isn’t it? It’s a distraction. The world could be burning down around me, but I wouldn’t care. I’d just be concerned about the butter melting on my bagel and did I add too much because it was warmer than usual?
And that’s the problem now. These behaviours don’t even feel like behaviours because they are just automatic. I don’t even think about what I am doing because it just happens. I don’t know how to break out of these patterns without someone else being there to do it for me or with me. I keep saying “I just need someone else to take control”, but then “No, I have to be the one to make this step”, but I wonder in order to get things rolling in motion, would it be so bad for someone else to take the reins just to start with?
When your world is constantly being tugged in one direction to the other, and feelings that you have no autonomy or no understanding of what’s right, how can you ever make a decision? But that’s just it, isn’t it? I know what the right decision is. The right decision is to put together a meal plan, a meal plan that offers me enough regardless of what the eating disorder says, and to stick to it. No matter what the eating disorder says, I must do it. In fact, whatever the eating disorder says, I have to do the opposite. The issue is not the plan, the issue is sticking to the plan when it feels like the hardest most crippling pain you could ever experience.
And that pain is unquantifiable, I cannot express a word that fills me with so much dread, hurt, anger, sadness, guilt, shame, terror, the list could go on forever, but a life stuck here forever terrifies me even more. I think.