Tuesday, January 27, 2009

my eating disorder: my pet

as i go through therapy at the emily program i learn more about myself, my eating disorder, & how i fit into the big bad world with all of this. & maybe it's cause i'm a gemini, maybe it's because i don't want to BE my eating disorder, but i've started to think of my eating disorder as something outside of myself. it's like it's a part of me, but it's also something outside of me. it's like this little gremlin that is always perched on my shoulder, hanging off my back in an invisible little baby back pack, always just there, in my life, whispering in my ear.

quite a bit of the time i'm able to control my eating disorder, my response to life, but sometimes i'll see it pop up & be very clear & present in my life. i guess it's a good thing that i'm becoming very conscious of when i am in control of my eating & when my eating disorder is in control. my eating disorder is not all about losing weight, much of it is really about food & how i interact/react to food. historically i've used food to reward myself & make myself feel better. but i've also used food, or rather, denying myself food, as a form of self punishment. sometimes it's easier for me to try to eat my emotions away, or starve myself, than feel emotions. it's easier to feel the pain of hunger than to feel sad, hurt, disappointed, ashamed, or any other emotion.

but, ironically enough, while before my eating disorder (before my surgery, before i even knew i had an eating disorder) was all about control now it is a bit about weight. before i used food to soothe & as a self injurious weapon. now body image & weight have become wrapped up in my eating disorder. just like my relationship with food has changed, so has my eating disorder. last week i was at work in the bathroom & feeling kind of bad about myself. my jeans have been a bit tight lately, a couple of my tshirts are tighter, & my weight has gone up about 5 lbs. so i had been beating myself up pretty bad. well, someone that i don't see very often at work told me that i was looked like i've lost some weight recently that she could really see it in my face. the part of me that is ashamed of my protruding bones & visible ribs & all the other "too thin parts" cringed, but, my eating disorder was just like a little puppy being given a biscuit. she sat up nice & tall & beamed & wagged her little tail & was so happy. & i felt nauseous. & i then went to my desk & ate some peanut m&ms.

i am convinced that i'm experiencing all of this for a reason. i am very grateful that my insurance is covering my therapy & that i have a job that allows me to leave early once a week to attend therapy sessions. this could be a lot worse for me. i am friends with someone who has a binge eating disorder & her family is not supportive & just makes her feel bad about herself. she won't even seek therapy because she feels she has no one to support her in that. i'm very lucky in that my family, my boyfriend, all my friends are very supportive of me & try to help me in anyway that they can.

this past weekend i started officially working on my book about my eating disorder. & yesterday at work i started going through emails from my mom. i decided that i'm going to include emails from her & from my friends & sister in my book. i don't want to BE my eating disorder, i'm so much more than that. but right now this is front & foremost in my life. & it's that way for a reason that i have yet to be able to identify. it's also important of me to be honest in all of this. i don't want to sugar coat anything. i don't want to shy away from anything tough or difficult. not everything will make it right away to my blog, but that's why i'm also keeping a journal. i'm also keeping a journal to make sure that my memories don't get shimmery. & by that i mean that i forget the hard stuff, or make things seem tougher than they were.

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