Hope · Living with anorexia

I never want to feel like this again

My chest feels heavy.  Invisible elastic is tight around my ribs, aching with each breath.

I stand up and feel weak.  My head sways, my vision blurs.

I have no energy.  I get up, dressed, go downstairs and collapse onto the sofa, exhausted before the day has begun.

I am cold.  So cold.  I huddle under blankets, hugging a hot water bottle and struggle to remember what it’s like to be warm.

My fingers freeze, my nails are blue.

Sitting down hurts.  Lying down isn’t much better.

My knees are bruised.  My back is sore.

Guilt.  There is guilt when I eat.  Guilt when don’t.  Guilt when I lie.  Oh the lies.  I promise I’ve eaten.  I hide the food.  My tongue lies with ease.  It is my conscience that pays the price.  Guilt is heavy.  Guilt hurts you.  Guilt does not let you forget.  Guilt stares you down, forces you to see the pain you are causing.

I can barely function.  I don’t remember what it is to be healthy.  To have energy, and strength and concentration.  To be care-free, unburdened by scales and numbers and calories.  To make plans, see friends, to run and laugh and be free.

The thought of food scares me.

The thought of death panics me.

My brain is slowing.

My hair is thinning.

My skin is peeling away.

My heart beats slowly, still bravely fighting, but fast running out of strength.

I am spiralling downwards.  I cannot stop it.

Food consumes my every thought, taunting me.  Torturing me.  Food is the answer.  The only answer.  I think of food, I dream of food, I smell food, I look at food, I touch food.  But I cannot eat food.

I must hold on to hope.  I refuse to believe I will be like this forever.  I will get better.  Hospital awaits me now.  I will keep fighting.  Each meal, each mouthful, each bite, I will keep going.  I cannot comprehend the scale of the challenge ahead of me.  It will overwhelm me and break me.

But from the broken pieces shattered on the floor, I will build myself again.

Because this is not me.

This is anorexia.

And I will be free.

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2 thoughts on “I never want to feel like this again

  1. I remember standing in the kitchen looking at the food in front of me knowing it was life. It seemed like there was this giant invisible barrier between us. “I can just reach out and eat it.” And yet I couldn’t. The guilt of eating was overwhelming, the guilt of not eating just as bad. Treatment removed that barrier. Sometimes I still look at my food with an anorexic mind but the difference is I’m now in the habit of picking it up and eating. I’ve transferred my means of control from not eating to eating my meal plan. I panic if I go off plan or run out of something and have to wing it, lol. It’s really rather ridiculous but at least I’m going in the direction of life.

    You are not at fault for your difficulties, not in the least! You can’t help it and it’s not about a choice. You are not being weak or difficult because you’re not eating. Anorexia is a mental illness. You are trapped in it. I have confidence that when you get into hospital you will be able to break free from that barrier. Will it be easier to eat? Probably not for awhile. Will you still be riddled with fears? Probably. I was. Eating was torture but I had to eat and I knew the only way I could eat was to have someone force me to eat until I was able to do it on my own. No matter what I write in my blog, I’m better. However, I still have anorexia. I also need to remember that it’s a mental illness.

    When I went to the assessment and the nutritionist told me that I couldn’t help it, that it wasn’t my fault I felt this relief wash over me. It didn’t last long because the guilt over rode everything but it was a moment of relief. I was validated. I still crave validation. I hope one day that I can validate myself and I hope that for you too. Seriously, you are doing the best you can. If you can’t have faith in yourself, maybe you can hold on to my faith in you.

    Liked by 1 person

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