Thursday, September 2, 2010

Elephant in the room

For the past month or so I have been sort of tip toeing around admitting this, but for the sake of recovery and for the sake of this blog I think it's important to just get it out. I'm overweight. Not by a lot. Not by enough for doctors to staple my stomach shut and put on me on all liquid diet but certainly a good ten pounds over. It's not my eating disorder telling you this by the way, in case you're sitting there rolling your eyes and saying, "OH god, EVERYONE who has an eating disorder thinks they are too heavy." When I entered the Day Program in March I was thin. I wasn't skinny like I was last fall because I'd just started bingeing, but I was thin. I actually managed to maintain that normal thin weight all throughout program which was awesome, but then I was discharged, and all hell broke loose. Since then I've put on about thirty pounds. THIRTY POUNDS. Thirty pounds, and none of it was actually necessary to restore.

I'm saying this because I feel like I've lost what I liked most about myself, and that was my willpower and control over food. How exactly does one go from a total diet and exercise obsessed fiend to a ice cream guzzling couch potato? It just saddens and confuses me. And I know I talk about this all the time, how much I miss being skinny, but I just can't help it. I am not the same person I was a year ago and it breaks my heart.

I guess I hold out a little bit of hope because in reality, I've been overweight before. Freshman year of college was a total death trap for overeating and I really pushed the envelope that year. However, I was stronger then. Much stronger. I was able to lose it slowly and healthfully, over the course of last summer. I was wise-minded about it. I am no longer able to attempt weight loss in that way though. I've tried! I just don't have the patience. Now that I know how much faster restriction works, its like, why do it the old way?

I guess the reason I've been avoiding the subject of being overweight is because I'm embarrassed and ashamed. I have an eating disorder with many faces, some I prefer more than others, and the binge face is the most shameful for me to admit to. I feel stupid thinking I have an ED since I'm heavy, but everything I've learned tells me that it isn't the number which determines your disorder, it's your intent and behavior.

Some day I hope to wake up and realize that my appearance doesn't have to dictate my feelings and actions, that being overweight doesn't mean I'm unloveable and unworthy of happiness. Until then, I'm stuck in a body that keeps me from going back to school, keeps me from wearing pretty clothes, keeps me from calling my friends back, and keeps me from growing up.


  1. babe, I'm sorry you have to go through SO much. you are so beautiful and strong for being honest with yourself. your worth has absolutely NOTHING to do with how you look but how you act and how you treat and think about yourself. weight goes way up and down in recovery and (i'm sure you've heard it a thousand times) but your body is just trying to figure out what it's doing. when you are healthy, you are beautiful.
    xoxo em

  2. Thank you, Emmy :) That's sweet of you. It does feel good to be up front about everything, even if it feels kind of rotten.

  3. Your overweight? By what standard? By BMI? That's a bogus thing so forget it. By what you were when you were SICK? Well that doesn't count. Now if you truely feel like your not as healthy as you want to be, you can't move or do things that you would like to, then I can say maybe do something about it. But bodies have different set points and some of them are higher on the scale than we would like (ok than ED would like, see my post from yesterday, the scale/ the number is not a valid method of juding if your health (unless you are way out of a normal range, that can be 20-40 lbs any way).

    Also keep in mind that your body might need some time to learn to trust you again. After a period of normal eating your body might settle back down to a lighter weight once it trusts that you will not drive it too hard, or stop feeding it again.

  4. Sorry for writting a book. I just don't want you to feel like you have to be a "number" on the scale or the clothes size.

  5. I just know I'm overweight because this doesn't feel natural. I can remember times when I felt healthy and was eating right and I was a lot thinner. I wanna be like that again. But I'm approaching the problem diplomatically so far. Not fixating on it 24/7, not starving myself, and definitely not bingeing.