CW: Eating disorder, mental illness
I have to say, I became much more in touch with my physical body once I started starving it. I can stand to look at myself in the mirror. Long enough to start noticing things. Like the two spots right in the middle between my left breast and my collar bone. Or that weird bump right below my ribs on the right side. My right breast is oh- so- slightly smaller than the left. And now, eighteen unnecessary pounds lighter, there are more things to notice. There are dimples on my hips now. I say dimples. Really it’s my hip bones becoming more prominent. My bottom ribs are starting to show through. My collarbones become more and more obvious. And my cheeks are starting to flatten, letting my cheekbones shine for once.
And I can hear my body more. I can hear my body crying for food, for nourishment. It’s background noise, but at least now my body is telling me something other than “I’m in pain”. The pain is such old news. My mind explores the new angles and balance of my body and wonders idly if my increasing bouts of dizziness are due to lack of food. Really, lack of eating. And the darkness inside watches the self-destruction, the self-disintegration, the self-loathing. The darkness watches and laughs.
I swear it wasn’t intentional. I just can’t eat anymore. I really don’t mean to starve. It kind of just happened. My mother needed help but I was trapped and couldn’t do anything but watch the drama unfold as my home potentially imploded and I couldn’t eat for two weeks but then it didn’t implode and then I was furious and couldn’t eat for another week. And I became sick whenever I ate, because I’d almost forgotten how to eat and my stomach had resorted to digesting itself. And then I had horrible stomach cramps when I ate, and yes my pain tolerance is crazy high but there was no warm up for this and I hate stomach pains. And then I became scared of eating because classical conditioning is a bitch, and I became nauseous at the thought of food. And I persevered and I tried but half- heartedly because my mind wants me dead and my body wants me alive and the darkness makes sure neither gets what they want. And now I just don’t notice the hunger. Or maybe I just don’t get hungry anymore.
But my stomach is flat and my mind is sharp and food makes me slow and groggy and ill anyway. And since I don’t really like chocolate anymore but tomatoes are suddenly delicious, and I still love shrimp so I make myself shrimp pasta and force it down and even derive some bit of genuine pleasure from it. And hope that I don’t become unable to keep it down like it happened with Subway sandwiches when they were the only things I could keep down.
Though, I wonder when I started caring if my stomach was flat? I didn’t care a year ago, but I care now and I don’t know what exactly changed (everything in my life changed) and I had a flat stomach last year even though I didn’t know it but it was still there so why do I care? Did I start caring when I stopped eating and started casting about for a reason, any justification, why I was still okay? Even as the idea of food became disgusting? Even after I cooked for six hours and fed fifteen people and went to bed having eaten not a bite the entire day? I could swear I was still okay.
But there has to be a reason. I loved food. I still love food. I just don’t like eating it. Not anymore. And I don’t like myself can’t be the reason either, because I’ve never liked myself and I always ate well. But it’s difficult to believe my own claims of ignorance and confusion. Especially when my body eagerly awaits the day I faint from light headedness and am forced to receive help even as my mind makes sure I am never without honey and chocolate to guard against that very event. And I know its self destructive when even the darkness thinks the mind is going too far. The mind wants me dead, but then the darkness would lose its plaything and it doesn’t want that. No. It’s the mind that wants to drag this bloody endeavor out to the absolute bitter end.
But I’m fine. I have a handle on this.