Last week I posted about having a doctor’s appointment and possibly confessing to my ED. It’s a terrifying prospect to be faced with because on one hand I am screaming for help and on the other the “your not thin enough” voice is booming through an imaginary megaphone. The “you ate too much yesterday” “didn’t work out hard enough to burn the calories” and “you’ll be better if you can just lose more weight” voices feel as though they are being shouted by a stadium full of screaming fans.
Except this ED Is not my friend. It’s.Not. My. Friend. I have to keep reminding myself of that because honestly it feels like it is. And so, even though I was sitting there in the exam room of the doctors office I was still unable to let go. I knew as soon as I parked it wasn’t going to happen. I sat there, in the parking lot, staring at the front door knowing on the other side lay the help I needed to get to freedom and yet I ignored the small voice saying “please help”. It wasn’t loud enough to drown out the rest of the “you’re not skinny enough” voices. Not even after I dropped below my goal weight.
That’s right, i made it to my goal weight. (trigger warning) Actually I am 3 pounds under my goal weight but still even though I promised myself i would ask for help once I reached my goal weight here I am, lying in bed after a day of restricting and taking diuretics just to make sure all the weight was off before I was forced on the scale. I am terrified of the scale. I used to be obsessed with it but one time I gained and I quite actually came so close to killing myself that I scared myself out of it. I am talking had everything in the bathroom, planned it out, was prepping and realized that someone would have to explain what happened to my adorable 3 year old (at the time) niece and nephew. It was that thought that stopped me cold. I threw the scale out and developed an immense fear of ever getting on it again. Going to the doctor is wrought with anxiety for that reason solely.
But I made it to my goal weight on a day that may have presented itself to me to get help. That’s ironic. I was also supposed to be excited about being at my goal weight (and I am absurdly happy) but at the same time I feel… ashamed(?). I’m not sure that’s what it is but I just feel like I let myself down because it’s both not lower and because I told myself I wouldn’t go below my goal weight without asking for help and I know that’s not going to be true anymore.
Part of me thinks the reason I couldn’t ask for help today is because I had to exceed my calorie limit this weekend. One of my best friends got married and I was doing wedding activities all day Friday and Saturday which meant every meal was not my same food, not on my schedule, not alone, not safe, and not able to escape. I covered up most of my not eating though by just moving food, eating only the vegetables, talking a lot, etc. At the wedding reception though, I purged in the bathroom more than a few times because I ate after almost passing out in the church’s bathroom and I didn’t want to ruin my friend’s big day but the food I ate was unsafe so it had to come out. But after eating something that’s unsafe I feel unjustified to go asking for help because I let myself actually consume that food despite how much I hated myself during and after.
Yesterday I also had a close encounter. I am in school and was shadowing at a hospital and was so sick from not eating Sunday or Monday that I nearly threw up and collapsed during shadowing. Luckily, the person I was shadowing didn’t notice but when I had lunch with some of the other people in the department one of the ladies asked me as we left if I had actually eaten anything. (trigger warning) I had had 5 baby carrots and an apple, both of which are not entirely safe but my safe food wasn’t feasible. I tried to extend it out but I just lied and said I was going to dinner early and had had a large breakfast after my workout (the workout part wasn’t a lie but the eating comment was). I do, however, find it highly ironic that someone I have known for 3 hours can spot that I haven’t eaten and people I spend day in and out with, haven’t. I also find it terrifying, am I getting worse at hiding it? sicker? was it a fluke?
Anyway, I didn’t get help. I didn’t freeze up I just didn’t feel like I needed help. The doctor even asked me if there was anything else or if I wanted to discuss something else. I said no as if it was second nature but I could feel a part of me screaming yes. As soon as I got 5 minutes down the road, though, I regretted it. Not enough to turn around, go back inside and say anything though. Not enough to cut the strings making me into a puppet for this ED.
I guess all I can do is my best. I tried. Now I have a new goal weight (it always gets lower) but I also know that the doctor is in the same building and hopefully soon that room will hear the words that I’ve been keeping secret. I am still thinking about July 2 but honestly, I’m not sure any more because I am pretty sure i am going to have another day when I can’t stand this, call the doctor and do it right then and there while I am stronger than the ED because otherwise it just has too much time to talk me out of it.