(Warning - This post could be triggering to those in recovery. Please do not read this if numbers or descriptions of restricting would be harmful to you.)
That is what I consumed yesterday. I made sure I got up too late for breakfast. I had my morning coffee sans sugar. I called myself a pig for drinking 230 calories of heaven in the form of an ice-cold McDonald's orange pop for lunch to accompany my four nuggets (trying to ignore the Happy Meal slogan on the box, which reminded me this amount is meant for a child.) I measured exactly one-third cup of rice and one-third cup of peas for dinner.
I went to bed hungry. I felt guilty because millions of people, in particular children, go to bed hungry without choice each night. And I have a choice. Or do I? Who is in control here, anyway - me or anorexia nervosa?
That's what I weighed yesterday morning. The ritual of the scale hasn't stopped for three years. It's always the same: get up, blurry-eyed and sleepy, then go to the bathroom before stepping naked on the innocent-looking white box which decides each day whether I will restrict or eat. I would like to drop kick my scale across the room, set it on fire, smash it with a hammer or hurl it off the tallest building I can find in this small town. (I have many fantasies of revenge for this hated symbol of my descent into anorexia; I've destroyed several over the years, only to go buy another one.)
I am a hypocrite. For weeks, I have been posting on a pro-ana blog deploring the very behaviors I am doing, trying to convince these young girls to stop and think before some of them become sucked into the hell of anorexia. I tell them they don't want to do this; that anorexia can't be ditched as easily as a bad diet. Several others also have posted on this particular site and one woman (Marge of Lake LaBerge) was particularly blunt with them, calling them (freaking) morons and telling them they will look worse than the heroin junkies hanging out in her Vancouver neighborhood.
So why can't I stop doing this to myself? I am the freaking moron. I worked so hard last year to gain weight. I had to consume about 3,000 calories of food and Ensure to reach 110 (which still is too low, but much healthier I was.) It was sheer hell; the whole refeeding process was one of feeling bloated and fat and moody and I could hardly stand myself.
I ended 2009 with the incredibly positive post, "Leaving ED- one year later." "I dream of the future, one filled with love and teaching and writing and learning." I thought I had it all wrapped up. I thought 2010 would be the year I would conquer all my eating disorders fears and behaviors, and put the whole damn thing behind me.
Things starting falling apart by January 2. Happy Freaking New Year's! My words and my hopes make me want to throw up. I try to help others and support them when they are struggling,
I called The Renfrew Centers after my one-week IP stay in February. I tried to eat more after I was discharged, but soon ditched that plan when David went to Florida for two-weeks (Ana was just ecstatic about this, rubbing her hands with glee at the thought of restricting and cutting and oh my!) and haven't stopped restricting since. I am convinced if I don't do something more, my next trip to Beaumont Hospital will be to the morgue.
I have completed my assessment and plan to be admitted to Renfrew's 30-day treatment program (so sorry, insurance doesn't cover residential) the second week of May. The program is designed to help me overcome my fear of food and weight, and then dig a little deeper through various groups and programs. The idea is to teach me healthy coping skills to replace my all-time favorite, restricting.
So if I am doing this (and borrowing thousands of dollars from my father to pay for my living arrangements), why have I been trying to basically destroy myself the month before I go? To prove how sick I am? To make sure I am at a low enough weight so any gain will feel less traumatic? To sabotage any chance at succeeding?
Or because deep down I am a hypocrite who really doesn't want to get better? Am I really pro-recovery? Or has my past associations with pro-ana sites and my current campaign to convince a few pro-ana girls triggered me? Am I falling again for the message that I need to be thin, so thin you can see my ribs and clavicle and protruding spine? So thin that it hurts to sit in most chairs?
So thin that I get sick again? Is that I want? To become so sick I can't go to Renfrew? Why do I try and sabotage any attempts at recovery? (I've done this for years. I continue "Bargaining with Recovery.")
Am I a hypocrite? I've always tried to be honest here. But I can't yet write about what is underneath the anorexia. Exposing the roots would be too much, too violating. What's underneath, at least as far as I have explored with my doctor, feels dirty and slimy and too ugly to ever trust telling anyone else. And I can't seem to stop restricting, especially after we talk about what's underneath; what might be the root causes of me developing anorexia.
That's what I consumed today. I want to go lower, but I know I need to go higher.
Who is in control here, anyway? Because right now, I feel out-of-control.