Sunday, April 10, 2011
What living with an Eating Disorder looks like:
Life is like walking upstream through a river. There are parts of the river that are calm and the walking is easy, sometime even effortless. Then without warning I find myself in deep rapids and I get pulled under the water (a binge). The rapids are rough and I get tossed around, never being able to get a breath of fresh air, I’m drowning! I’m being tossed and turned, I don’t know which way is up or down and my head keeps getting smashed painfully on the rocks, making the confusion and disorientation all that much worse. I can’t breath! I need to breath. I have no idea when the rapids will be done with me, when I’ll be able to breath again. It’s so painful and scary, I have no control! and then I stick my head out the water and breath, a huge satisfying breath of fresh clean air (a purge). There is so much calmness in that first gasp of air that I can put my feet back under myself and regain my composure. I am okay now, the water is calm and I can start my journey on life’s path again.
There are times when I recognize that I shouldn’t purge. That it really is unhealthy and no matter how much I need to breath I force myself to stay under the dark scary water. At some point I loss consciousness from the lack of oxygen and smashing of my body against the rocks. When I eventually wake up battered and bruised on the shore there is no satisfaction to that first breath. I am standing alone emotionally and physically beat up with nothing to do but start walking back upstream.