"...how do you measure a year in the life?"
My God- that's a lot of minutes.
I haven't been not blogging because I haven't wanted to, but in part because I wanted to write this post but didn't really know how to say it.
My life pretty much hit rock bottom last December 1. I didn't see a life without anorexia, and figured it was going to kill me eventually. I got bored of waiting for 'eventually' and took a massive overdose. I remember the time (3 am), I remember what I took and how much (the nurse in the ER said "That stuff could kill you" and I told her that was kind of the point), and then...I don't remember much of the next several weeks. I was in the CCU on heart monitors for a while, and then transferred to a psych unit for 2 weeks.
What I do remember is being told how lucky I was to be alive, a sentiment I found blithely laughable at the time. It's not like you try to kill yourself, and then the next morning you wake up and think "Holy shit, what was I thinking???" and then sing and dance. No, you wake up and groan and realize that you're going to have to do this thing - wake up and meet the day - for a very long time to come. And it sucks.
I have done this for the past 365 days. Greeted 365 mornings and gone to bed 365 times. I had hoped, in the beginning, that I would be able to refer to anorexia in the past tense after a year had passed. This was enough time, surely. One year. One whole year.
Though I am not actively anorexic (I eat, I maintain a healthy weight), the AN is very much present tense. Most of the time, eating is still followed by thoughts of anger and guilt and fatpigfatpigfatpig you lazy idiot! But still I eat. I know I must. It's hard for me to see my weight and not immediately go back to starving and purging. Yet I know that no weight is low enough, and that I have to make peace with who and what I am.
I am not always happy to be alive. I'd rather be alive than not, however, and this is often enough for me.
At this time last year, I was serenaded by the beeping of my heart monitor in the CCU. At this time last year, I was still underweight. I had far fewer scars from cutting and a little bit more money in my bank account. I hadn't yet begun to apply to the writing program.
And now I'm half done.
There were some pretty damn long minutes, too. Facing plate after plate of food. Sitting in traffic. Dealing with my batshit crazy co-workers. And, in spite of everything, there was some good times, too. Getting accepted to Hopkins. That 15-minute-turned-four-hour-nap. Blogging.
Grey's Anatomy has the best wisdom:
Maybe we're not supposed to be happy. Maybe gratitude has nothing to do with joy. Maybe being grateful means recognizing what you have for what it is. Appreciating small victories. Admiring the struggle it takes simply to be human. Maybe we're thankful for the familiar things we know. And maybe we're thankful for the things we'll never know. At the end of the day, the fact that we have the courage to still be standing is reason enough to celebrate.
"...how do you measure a year in the life?"
- binge eating disorder
- biology of EDs
- body image
- disordered eating
- eating disorder
- Grand Theory of Eating Disorders
- narrating anorexia
- normal eating
- obesity hysteria
- weight gain
- weight loss
- Carrie Arnold
- I'm a science writer, a jewelry design artist, a bookworm, a complete geek, and mom to a wonderful kitty. I am also recovering from a decade-plus battle with anorexia nervosa. I believe that complete recovery is possible, and that the first step along that path is full nutrition.
Drop me a line!
nour·ish: (v); to sustain with food or nutriment; supply with what is necessary for life, health, and growth; to cherish, foster, keep alive; to strengthen, build up, or promote
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