Yesterday afternoon I was out for my daily run and on my way back to my car, I found myself turning off the path and taking a seat on my bench. The same bench that I’ve sat on throughout this season of my life. The same bench I’ve jogged past, ignoring over these last weeks, afraid of the reflections that take place on that bench.
I remember the first emotion I felt as I sat down, was a sense of accomplishment. Yesterday was an awful day, in fact every day over the last weeks have been truely awful. But yesterday (and a varied days between) I have achieved small moments of twisted pride. I say ‘twisted’ because as I ready myself to explain, I realise that what I have accomplished are indeed the exact things I shouldn’t be accomplishing.
A sense of accomplishment surrounding the very fact that I’ve found efficient ways to skip breakfast almost every day for the last few weeks. A sense of accomplishment each time I’m able to also skip lunch, this has been a bit harder than breakfast but still manageable most days. A sense of accomplishment that I’ve developed a well functioning set of strategies to allow for instant purging after each meal, as opposed to that dreaded thirty minute wait. A sense of accomplishment in knowing that I am able to run 5km everyday without suspicion. A sense of accomplishment each time my mother reinforces her trust in me. A sense of accomplishment post cleaning up after myself as to not leave a trace of evidence. A sense of accomplishment after each deed is done, just that small taste of control in knowing I have the upper hand. A sense of accomplishment in seeing those numbers drop on the scale, finally after months of building foundations of trust. A sense of accomplishment in knowing that though those numbers are definite cause for admission, I’m able to once again purchase and hide weights within my clothes for my weekly weigh-ins. A sense of accomplishment that I’ve sought out a well planned series of events and foundations that will be laid out over the coming weeks to ensure my medical team are believing that there is enough improvement for me to live alone for a few weeks. A sense of accomplishment in planning that within those few weeks, while my family is away, I’ll be able to do as much damage as I can whilst maintaining a good face in my appointments so as to not be admitted before my family’s return. A sense of accomplishment in buying oversized jumpers and clothing to hide my body. A sense of accomplishment as new bones become visible under my skin. A sense of accomplishment as new clothes soon again becomes too big. A sense of accomplishment as my body aches from the exercises. A sense of accomplishment, one after the other.
These senses of accomplishment are all prideful and sneaky. They don’t belong to me, they don’t belong to me at all. On my bench this afternoon I had a moment of clarity where I realised that those emotions of accomplishment are belonging to my eating disorder. T has been right all along, my eating disorder has taken over and I am no longer in control. I found myself utterly disgusted in myself, this isn’t who I wanted to become. My eating disorder isn’t who I wanted to become.
This acknowledgement of not being in control brings me to a sudden crossroad; am I to continue being honest with T and to seek her help, or am I to be deceitful and follow down this road of self-destruction?
Seeking help hasn’t been an option I’ve dared to consider. My last post clarifies my position of sheer comfortably and contentment. T once said; “Seeking help and getting better is actually very scary, moving out of your comfort zone is very scary” – she’s more correct than you’d know, it os scary. Besides that, wouldn’t the very act of seeking help mean that I in some way believe that I am worthy of help and healing?
To place it bluntly, I am not worthy and frankly I don’t want anything other than for my existence to cease. As grateful as I am, I don’t particularly want help, or to hear about how unwell I am or about how I need to do all these things to get better. I am not worthy. I am not worthy of medication to help me heal. I am not worthy of a better life. I am not worthy of healing. I am not worthy of peoples care or time. I am not worthy of love. I am not worthy of life. Don’t you see?
T once told me that I don’t like myself and honestly, she’s right. When I see my reflection in the mirror I see that I am disgusting. My body is scarred with cuts, burns, bruises, marks and calluses.. some of which I have carried from childhood traumas, some that were imprinted upon me by others and some that I inflicted upon myself. How could anyone love me? I’m not worthy of that. But maybe that’s the essence of it all? Maybe I wasn’t created to be loved. Maybe my purpose is to provide others with what they need. Not only talking about the traumas but life and people in general. Maybe I’m meant to go through life being used and thrown away as seen fit. The voices in my head mockingly whisper the words spoken to me by those I’ve loved most.. by family and friends who became family..
“Sometimes it’s better for you to shut up and not be heard. I’m done with you. You mean nothing to me. Rape is such a joke. Did you tell T you want to kill yourself again?You’re a manipulative piece of trash. I never want to see you again. Go cut yourself, that’s what you do best. I can’t deal with you anymore. No one will love you if you’re fat. She listens to depressing music that makes you want to slit your wrists. Don’t eat so much or your gain weight again.”
Those are just few of the words that remind me of my worth each day. My depression and eating disorder clings to them and feeds off of each phrase and name I have received. My identity is overshadowed by my past and tainted by the opinions of others. Over the years I have watched as my worth and value was violently and continuously stripped away. I have never and I will never be capable of amounting to any standard, hope or expectation. Do you yet understand why I am not worthy of seeking help and healing?
You see, each week I visit T and each week she sits before me and pleads with me to take steps toward healing… ‘wait thirty minutes, don’t run, don’t use laxatives, try delay the purging, go to the appointments, try to be honest’ etc. But as grateful as I am that she cares, my goals aren’t the same as hers? They never have been. In the beginning T told me her only goal is to keep me alive until I’m ready to keep myself alive but to want to keep myself alive, I’d need to believe I was worthy of staying alive which I don’t. In saying this, I really have tried at times to take those steps forward but it’s so hard.
T once asked me once what ten years from now looks like and I told her “six feet under”, she was saddened to hear that but I couldn’t lie to her. Admittedly nothing’s changed, in the time since she asked me, nothings changed. I’m not worthy, what reasons do I have for staying alive? I’m a failure, a disappointment, overweight, dishonest, deceitful, manipulative, ungrateful, disgusting, a waste, destructive, damaged etc. Have you any idea the effect the traumas have had on me? Foremost from the men in my childhood, as well as the men over the recent years? Most of those trauma’s have been left unspoken of, but each of them have left me nonetheless scarred. Who would want me around anyway? Again, I’m not worthy.
Up until the day I recognise my worth and choose to fight against my eating disorder and my deep depression, I will continue to delve further and further down the path of self destruction.
I am well and truely, in over my head.