162 we've got a lot, don't you dare forget that

SO, for my english 101 class (omfg this class makes me want to shoot myself btw i know how to construct a sentence and i hate the rigidness of the way we are "supposed" to write) we have to write a descriptive personal narrative about overcoming a great challenge that has made us into the person we are today. one guess what my first thought was!
so i'm sitting there in class all excited because i know how i want to write this paper and then i realize, the professor is going to read this paper. and then she's going to know. and then how will she look at me?

and i start to second guess myself because i'm not sure if i really want her to know all of that. then she reveals that we will have to share our rough draft with a group. and then i decide that i am 100% not, no way, no how, ever going to write about my eating disorder.

(keep in mind x number of years ago, any time the words 'eating disorder' entered my thoughts, i was certain that i was 100% not, no way, no how ever going to have an eating disorder)

so i wrote it. and i decided i'm going to share it and i'm fucking terrified, honestly. but i want to put it on here before i read it out loud to a bunch of strangers (HEH??) because i want to go through it one more time so i can be absolutely sure of what i'm doing.

sigh, here goes. sorry if it's all stuff you've heard before and it's terribly cliche and it's really... ugh whatever this is bullshit don't read it if you don't want to i'm done with the stupid disclaimers

"Every day I struggle with the demon that is an eating disorder. Every day I worry, calculate, analyze, poke and prod at my body and try to drown out the disgust that fills and coats my mouth. I fight the urge to cut out calories and meals. I shake with effort as I resist the impossibly powerful drive to rush to the bathroom alone after a meal and rid myself of the food that leaves me feeling dirty, worthless, impure. Every day I fight the impulses that send me blindly catapulting into flames of self-destruction and I fight the anxiety that drives a million tiny needles into my skin. I spent three months in a treatment center where my weight was stabilized and I received therapy from several talented psychologists and since then I have been home for about two and a half months. It feels like a lifetime since the first time I realized I really had a problem, but thanks to a treatment center called Mirasol, I am lucky enough to still be here.

The day my problem became most real to me, looked me straight in the face with bone-chilling coldness, was just the start of a very long journey. It was around noon when my mom announced that she was going to run errands and asked if I wanted her to bring me back something to eat. I hesitated and bit my lip, staring straight ahead, before bursting into tears. I was agonizing over whether to give in to my hunger and endure the inevitable self-loathing or keep starving and hang desperately on to the feelings of pride that came with fasting. My mom decided to bring me something back, and I ate it through tears, sobbing and choking and feeling completely disgusted with myself and my body. I swallowed tear after salty tear and it became apparent to me that maybe my mom was right. Maybe I really did have a problem. Unfortunately, by the time I realized the hole I had dug myself into, I was further down than I had ever imagined and looking up out of the ground wasn't so easy anymore.

After the breakdown, my parents had me see a therapist, who suggested I try an outpatient program called Healthy Futures. Twice a week for four hours at a time I sat with either a therapist, dietitian, or group of four to six other girls in a room that smelled like cheap home fragrances. I found the groups essentially useless; we "checked in" and talked about what was going on in our lives but were cautioned not to talk about anything that might trigger another girl, which meant topics like food, weight, and body image were forbidden. I continued dropping weight and restricting food intake until they told my parents that I couldn't stay. They recommended trying an inpatient treatment facility and soon we were on the phone with endless facilities across the country. We eventually settled on a treatment center in Tucson called Mirasol.

Mirasol was my saving grace; there, I was provided consistency, safety, comfort, and an acceptance I had never known to exist elsewhere. The staff became my friends and saw me through times of desperate tears and brilliant shining smiles. I became friends with some of the other girls there and found an indescribable comfort in the things we shared. I could finally relate to people. I was able to harness my creativity and pour myself into collaging and writing when I was struggling. I learned about the causes behind an eating disorder, and for the first time I truly believed that there was nothing "wrong" with me as a person. The wounds I had failed to recognize and treat since childhood finally began to heal.

I truly believe now that if I had not gone to Mirasol, I wouldn't be here today. At best, I might be lying in a hospital bed, pale and transparent as a ghost, eating through a feeding tube. My struggles are still a daily challenge but I am more able to cope. I am able to go out to lunch without the road in front of me blurring through tears into a haze of gray as I drive home. I completed the testing necessary to receive a GED and I have a job I love. I still work with my therapist from Mirasol, who helps keep me in line with her extremely effective and unconventional methods. And, for the first time since that unforgettable, eye-opening breakdown, I have hope for myself and my future."

omg how corny am i.
really i'm just scared, do i really want to be split open and exposed and that pure and raw in front of people i've known for 2 days?

hold my hand please


Anonymous said…
Pain shared is a gift...it helps us know we're not alone, that demons and monsters come in many guises, and that strength comes from surviving life's battles.

Rock on...
Anonymous said…
yeah, do it. it's fucking great. and the fact that you are willing to do it is an amazing example of the progress you've made. if you actually go through with it, it just shows you're that much stronger. things like this are good because they are small steps you can take in your recovery.
s said…
sometimes it's easier to be completely vulnerable in front of strangers or maybe that's a bunch of bs but you'll never know until you try.

if it means anything, i believe in you.

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