Fearing the Vitality of Nourishment

Me again! I was evaluating my previous posts, and realized something odd. I don’t really go into the effects of eating disorders too much. I have my peaks of delving into it, however, I sometimes steer away from it. My eating disorder is obviously one of the biggest factors of my life right now. In recovery, I feel as though it is the biggest part. I was always afraid to post my food challenges. Is it because of the added ‘pressure’? Or the fact that it’s out there for all to know? Perhaps both. I decided to take it upon myself to create a long term/short term fear food goal list. The results astounded me. I always knew I had a long way to go, however, just writing down a few made me realize the severity ANA has played on my life. I noticed that even my prior states of BED (Binge eating disorder) has impacted my life tremendously  Some fear foods are tied to memories of binging during what should have been recovery back in 2010. I would binge and binge on things I never even ate. This consisted of cereals. My binges you ask? Imagine a young naive lad who didn’t realize what an eating disorder really was due to poor treatment. I was receiving treatment from a hospital who treated me like I intentionally wanted an eating disorder. They instead gave me tips in a way. The nutritionist and therapist would say things like “So we (regarding myself) starve ourselves all day thinking we would binge at night and really we don’t, right?”   or “Do you hide food? Or throw up or over exercise to lose the weight? How about lying to your parents about what you eat?” Mind you, at the time, I never lied to my parents about what I ate (Partially why I went into “treatment”. I also never hid food. My exercise was light as well. Over all, the process was terrible. Over the summer, I still ate pasta and potatoes, therefore, they were my ‘safe foods’. My mind set told me that I could still be skinny if I ate such foods. Towards the end of September, I continued to eat more of pasta and potatoes. However, my pasta intake increased more and more. It got to the point where I was eating close to a box. My binges started to worsen circa Halloween. I ate a ton of granola bars. I repeat, this was odd because I would solemn even eat such things. I ate way too much to the point where my stomach was ‘inflated’ We had a family dinner that night, where my aunt commented “Welp, there she is again, eating another granola bar” I remember feeling really embarrassed. At least when I was heavy, no one would comment as harshly. Things got emotional after that. I hated everyone for putting me in help when I didn’t even know what I had. (My weight wasn’t so low where I was deemed anorexic, I never threw up so I wasn’t bulimic.) This frustrated me. All “treatment” did was give me an incentive to be anorexic. That was my goal. All I wanted was to be anorexic, I was driven. It was going to happen. My binges turned into “contests”. I steered my way to crackers around the same time. It went from 5 crackers with 2 tablespoons of salsa, to a sleeve of crackers with more salsa, up to 2 or 3 sleeves of crackers with salsa. From salsa, I moved to cheese. I was never a huge cheese person; if it was at a party, I would eat some. However, if it was just lying around the house, it wouldn’t be my first choice. Around Thanksgiving, I realized that I gained weight. My size ones were tight and I had a tummy. The day after thanksgiving, my mom took my brothers, little cousin, and I to get a portrait for my nana. I loathed the way my clothes fit, but I couldn’t stop binging. I was programmed to binge. I went to cereals and oatmeals. I enjoyed oatmeal from time to time, but cereals, never. I would have over 6-7 cups a night ALONG with crackers and yogurt and fruit (I thought it would “cancel out”). Things only got worse when I decided to include bread. I deprived myself of bread for the longest time. The first time eating bread, I ate four slices, then six, once almost a whole loaf. My next abused substance? Bananas, around spring it was peanut butter and cashews. I became depressed in February when I attempted to try on my size one jeans again, and they didn’t fit. I was so embarrassed to ask my mom to get new clothes. Mom and dad never saw these binges, but they insisted that if I wanted to start to work out again, I’d have to eat more. I was baffled. How can I eat anymore? Then it hit me, they don’t see my binges. I was trapped. Here is an outline of what it came to in 2010:
Crackers (2-3 sleeves)
Bread (Circa 6 slices)
Pasta (On pasta nights, it would be half-close to one full box)
Yogurt (Around 2)
Fruit (Lost count)
Cereal (Around 6 cups)
When I was going through my “cheese stage” I would have around half a block, sometimes more. In regards to my “peanut butter/ cashew stage”, I would consume half a container of cashews. I can’t even remember how much peanut butter, rest assured it was significantly more than the serving size. I was sick. I abused food and in return, it made me unhealthy. I went from being 100 pounds to over 150. I never conquered any fear foods or included a variety. The majority of the binges are blurs. All of it was too much to handle. Its as though my psyche was shielding me from the inevitable reality of the pain. This relates to current day recovery in some respects. For example, I remember only binging on Special K Berries and Yogurt cereal. I couldn’t bring myself to eat it until recently. The dark memories of my prior binges scarred my current state. I have been challenging them more so, which grants me this feeling of a greater empowerment. I was planning on listing some fear food challenges, however, I realize this post is longer than I anticipated. My apologies. Until next time, maybe Franklin D. Roosevelt had it right in that, “the only thing to fear is fear itself”, lads. 🙂

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