Friday, 22 February 2013

Day 186: Baggage from the Past – when is an ED really over?

I’ll be going through my day and everything is normal and then I would for instance open the fridge and want to eat a particular food and then a thought quickly flashed by that goes “No, don’t do that – don’t you know how many calories is in that??” Like randomly, out of nowhere, completely out of context. And then I actually go “hmmm – good point there” and then “what no! what am I doing?!” and then have to snap myself out of it.

Or I’m busy doing some exercises just because its fun and supportive and then there will be a small moment where I go “I wonder how many calories you burn doing this” – like a sneaky little thought that crawls up from the back of your head and then I actually start shifting my perspective/approach on the exercise I’m doing and go “hmm yes interesting how many calories am I actually burning hmmm I wonder if its more or less than that exercise – oh maybe eating that piece of chocolate earlier is being cancelled out right now…” and then if I don’t stop myself it just goes round and round and round and I start looking at everything in terms of losing wait and calories and fat and how to cancel things out and making plans for the future of what I am and not going to eat because if I eat this then I cannot eat that but then maybe later if I do that then it’s okay and and and… – it just spirals out really quickly. Just from following that one thought – where I go ‘ok thought, I give you permission to exist’ and then after I give it the ‘okay’ it starts bringing in all its friends and they bring their friends and before I know it there’s a full blown party in my head and it’s like I’m having an ED episode all over again.

So every day I see there are still little temptations, little points that if I allow myself to go there, the whole ED thing comes falling right back from the sky and then boom – I’m in it. Because it only takes that one thought, that one point where you kind of start looking at something in distorted way, kind of tilting your head into a different angle – and then that’s enough to screw yourself over. That one point of acceptance and allowance of ‘one little thought’ literally floods the gate for shit to come pouring in. If you allow that ONE point, you allow ALL of it.

So it’s quite interesting to see how I go through my day because it’s really a matter of ‘all or nothing’ where I either don’t participate in this type of stuff or where when I do I can just see how it just kind of start seeping in from all the corners of my day, like it literally starts to frame my day from this one perspective only until I go ‘Uh oh, what am I doing – stop!’

Earlier I was going through some checklists to see how people are ‘diagnosed’ with Eating Disorders as usually these type of things contain a list of disorder behaviour and the more you click ‘yes’ the more likely you have this or that disorder and I wanted to see what was considered normal and what not. So now in one of these lists, most of the points consisted of points/thoughts that most people have like: not wanting to be fat, wanting to be thin, feeling guilty after eating a lot, exercising to lose weight, caring about how you look, etc, etc – and then you also have the extreme points like starving yourself and binging and puking and flooding yourself with meds and laxatives. Yet if you only tick the ones I mentioned first, you don’t have an eating disorder and if you tick the points I mentioned last: you do.

Which is weird because from my perspective, it’s all disordered. Starving, binging, puking, meds and excessive exercise are just the outflow / extreme end of those other seemingly ‘innocent’ points that everyone has where you’re ‘conscious of how you look and what you eat’. I mean, I’ve been there – I had the ‘innocent thoughts’ and I followed them and you end up in a pretty screwed up situation. As long as we allow any form of distortion towards food and our bodies there will always be serious eating disorders like anorexia en bulimia – because those ‘innocent thoughts’ are merely the key to a door with a very long hallway with destination Eating Disorder. You may not go all the way down the hall but you’re still in the same building. It’s not just people who are seriously underweight and physically deteriorating that require ‘treatment’ for their disorder – because they’re just on the far end of the construct – and it’s a construct everyone participates in.
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