One of the things that earns a great deal of compassion from me is a friend suffering from an eating disorder. When I started blogging, it was to celebrate one year of abstinence from Bulimia. Presenting a very strong-as-nails approach to suppression of the binge-purge behaviours which had characterised my life for 11 years, I soon realised that my “healthy” method was not all love and hearts. Drinking like a fish, eating processed foods, and losing my yoga resulted. Oh yeah. And I got fat again. HUGE.
It was total havoc. And the one thing that hurt the most was telling people when they questioned about my life story, “I once suffered from Bulimia, and now I don’t, so I blog about it!”
Often times, they’d reply, “What a great story. You look so healthy now.”
YOU. LOOK. SO. HEALTHY. NOW.
An arrow to the heart.
Healthy I was not. Fat. Struggling. Unhappy. Rather the case.
I existed as very disordered, in the eating department, despite having said sayonara to Bulimia.
Why am I mentioning this now?
Independence Day was my five year anniversary of ending the Bulimia. I didn’t mention it then, because it’s not important to me anymore. That was another life, one that I’ll never experience again.
But sooooooooo many of my girlfriends, divine members of my tribe, ones whom I met here at the blog and others whom I’ve known since elementary school are continuing to struggle, and it just makes me want to squeeze them in a big hug. Not only do they suffer, but they suffer silently… except for the gorgeous emails, text messages, and pictures that I get from around the globe when someone feels very helpless. It is freaking humbling to get those things. And my heart’s never felt so happy to help.
These ladies are the ones who sometimes look “normal” sometimes “not,” and they’re the ones who just want to scream to the world, “I have an eating disorder! Do I look disordered to you? I wonder if you know what I do behind closed doors! I may or may not resemble a skeleton, but I have an eating disorder! And you all need to man the fuck up and realise that skeletons are not the only ones who suffer. Fat girls. Thin girls. Healthy-looking girls. Regular-looking girls. We suffer if an ‘eating disorder’ exists in our life.”
So what does an eating disordered person look like?
What does a vegan look like?
What does a holistic health coach look like?
What does a yoga girl look like?
The answer is this… they all look HUMAN.
So how can you tell one from the other?
This might help you to decide.
This is an eating disorder, vegan, and yoga girl in most of the following pictures, spanning 16 years. Note: she is the same person. She is me.
End eating disorder.
And you know what? Now I’m healthy:) At last!
She is, too:)
I promise you, we are healthy. So healthy it’s like sunshine radiates from our every pore. Yet the other day, I was told, “You look malnourished” by someone who knows my history. It kind of broke my heart because no matter how hard I try to drill the message about not judging books by their covers, the world will never get it. This is why I no longer “fight” for the ED girls. But just know, although I don’t write about it very much, any more, I am your biggest cheerleader.
by my friend Jessica
I don’t feel like a runner. I’m not strong any more. I’m weak, mentally and physically. I used to be the person who would run through anything.
Now I just give up.
I don’t get along with other runners much, because I don’t have the ‘runner’ mentality. I wish I did.
I’m just a fat kid who wants to binge eat and play video games all day. I never grew up. I have no drive or determination. It’s been worn away.
I have no fight left in me.
Frankly, I’m ashamed to exist.
Nobody should ever feel that way. I send her the biggest hug on Earth because I understand. You might, too. That’s all that I’ll say on this subject. Except maybe you can send Jessica a hug, too. Because she really needs it, and we love her.
Thank you for reading. It really means a lot!
Have a good day, and namaste.