I imagine the path is similar for many and different for others. For me, my eating disorder was a seed I planted during puberty. It was a realization that I have a body that is not slender and beautiful like other girls, which somehow makes me different and less than other girls.
That seed was then nurtured by the stress of moving across country to live on my own for the first time, with no friends or acquaintances on campus, to begin college and start learning how to cope with all the demands of life as an independent adult. And as I was doing that, I found myself surrounded by throngs of gorgeous hourglass-shaped southern belles. This only continued the unraveling of my self-esteem, a pervasive waning of my confidence. Continue reading “The Black Vine in my Mind”
Kathryn Hansen spoke my language. As crazy as this may sound (as the author of a book about my own eating disorder) Brain Over Binge was the first time I had ever read someone else’s account of their own eating disorder. Her words felt like a jolt to my chest. I was shocked to hear Hansen’s inner narrative sound just like mine.
While I knew others suffered from eating disorders (although due to my own stupid, stubborn proud nature, I never read their stories when I was suffering), I did not know their inner demon (which Hansen calls the “animal brain”) said the same things to them as mine said to me. Turns out others faced that same all-too-smart, all-too-logical justifier of my every bite. Continue reading “Book Review: Brain Over Binge”
In that moment, when I’m about to do it. On a good day: I’ve fought it all day, likely knowing all the while, despite my best efforts, that I’m going to cave. On a bad day: I’ve been secretly craving it all day, knowing I’m going to push everyone and everything out of my life for that glorious hour to succumb to it. But, I know I’m going to feel like total shit when it’s done, questioning yet again why I keep doing this to myself. Why I keep dancing with this demon? So, I promise myself this will be the last time. Continue reading “I Can Promise Anything … Then”
I wouldn’t have even needed to dress up for Halloween back then. I could have just gone as a pumpkin with those orange-colored hands!
While it’s a little hard to tell in this photo, I was sporting fingers I had turned orange by eating too much butter spray. Did I know it was causing my slow pumpkin-transformation at the time?
I thought a yellowy goo that tasted like salty heaven but boasted NO calories, not a single one, could only be good for me. But, in true Halloween style, I-can’t-believe-it’s-not-butter SPRAY is plastic in a mask, only dressing up as real butter.
This, year, let’s keep it real! Be a “butter” you : ) – the real you! The one whose size and shape you love because it is unique to you. Anyone else trying to be you would need a disguise. When I look at it that way, it makes me feel like a pretty cool person, one no one else can be.
Dress yourself up and head out on the town! But know that there is only one single, solitary Y.O.U. deep down!
Happy Halloween, peeps! 🎃
Having read Tabitha Farrar’s exceptional book, Love Fat, and the way she recounts her own struggle and recovery from Anorexia, I had to then hop over and give a listen to her podcast, the Eating Disorder Recovery Podcast. This one in particular, an interview of Dr. Danielle B. Grossman, was captivating as I (just as Tabitha did) commended Dr. Grossman for being an open-minded Psychotherapist to at least first consider whether her professional perception of eating disorders was wrong.
She confessed that she later discovered her initial professional opinion, that eating disorders stemmed from some some form of trauma or other emotional issue/need, was wrong. Her reason for this confession was because treatment of eating disorders in this way does not work. Continue reading “Tabitha Farrar’s Podcast: You’re Not Broken”
Don’t they all look so perfect and slender? Their taut tummies stretched in a sexy arch. Their chests heaving forward demanding your attention. And, their thighs! You can actually see daylight between their thighs! I don’t think any outdoor breeze on earth has graced the skin between my thighs. And, I don’t have really large thighs! And, I also don’t spend my time on the beach posing. I spend it writing to help others who might be slipping toward a terribly debilitating eating disorder as I did, and this topic has been burning on my mind.
Can we talk about posers for a minute? Continue reading “Can We Talk about Posers?”
Portia de Rossi proves the very thing I think everyone should know about people suffering from an eating disorder in her book, Unbearable Lightness: eating disorder sufferers are anything but lazy. Just like Portia, they are driven, motivated, exceptionally hard-working, and frighteningly hard on themselves.
Imagine accomplishing any one of the amazing things Portia was able to achieve—getting admitted to law school, becoming an actress, working her way to the States and onto hit TV shows—while running or walking multiple miles every day (yes, miles!), doing hundreds of leg lifts and sit-ups, counting calories, restricting, forcing her body into an unnatural “what society thinks is beautiful” mold. It’s like having two overwhelming full-time jobs at the same time and succeeding wildly at both. Of all the other eating disorder stories I have read, I believe I connected with Portia the most because of her innate drive to constantly strive for a bar she, herself, set so high.
Like I said, the very opposite of lazy. Continue reading “Unbearable Drive: Review of Portia de Rossi’s ED Memoir”
When the image first came to me, I couldn’t un-see it. It was there. Imprinted. Emblazoned on my mind. I was Sisyphus. Or had been at least. There was no other way to put it. But, I was no longer. And, now, a recovered eating disorder victim committed to helping others avoid that treacherous mind-altering path, I hope I can help you see it, too. Continue reading “Sisyphus”
Book Review: Maureen McCormick (“Marcia Brady’s”) Here’s the Story
All of them had hair of gold … but this one was Callie-style BOLD! Let’s admit it, Marcia Brady, the oldest daughter from the national sensation of a 70s sitcom, The Brady Bunch, seemed perfect. She was beautiful, thin, smart, loved. On the screen she was perfect. But, Maureen McCormick, who played Marcia Brady, was not that girl at all. Yet, we all have a ‘Marcia’ version of ourselves that we try to stick and glue together and put out for the world to see, when we’re really not that girl, or boy, at all. Continue reading “Surviving Your ‘Marcia’”
Back in my eating disorder heyday, I would often get caught in what I called a “food jam.” A forced meal. A real dilemma. For me, lunch was always the most common. When I was a highly-functional bulimic I would often starve through the day, drinking only coffee for breakfast.
“Why blow through so many calories so early? When I’m not even desperately starving yet?” Continue reading “A Food Jam”