At first glance it might seem that I am just a happy, normal girl who loves to bake and walk her dog. However, I have suffered with an eating disorder since I was 13. It was only in May 2014 when I realised that this Voice in my head was slowly but surely trying to kill me. And so began the long, hard, and painful journey which is recovery...
I want My Cocoa Stained Apron to be a special place...a place for reflection, memories, shared stories...and of course a little bit of cocoa-staining ;) Recovery might be the hardest thing you ever choose to do in this life. But it is also the bravest and best decision you will ever make.:)
Sunday, 12 October 2014
And now I know the truth.
I went to the doctor that day about my foot. Last Saturday I started getting achey twinges in the top part of my right foot. As the week went on, the pain refused to go away, and my foot became swollen and sore. Reluctantly, I went to the student clinics in Trinity for a drop-in appointment, and, after waiting for about two hours in a stuffy waiting room, with the smell of Vick and Olvas oil in my nostrils and the unpleasant sounds of sniffing and sneezes and general fluey-type noises in my ears, I finally got to admitted into the clinic, where a kindly middle-aged doctor asked me why I had come. As he did so he took a long, calculating look at me, his solemn grey eyes concerned. I firmly resolved to not conceal anything from him, and proceeded to explain what exactly was troubling me in regard to my foot.
The words he spoke next bore into my skull like nails being hammered into a doorframe. "You're of a very small stature, Emily...Have you always been this thin?" he asked quietly.
I had gone in there to talk about my foot. I hadn't intended in mentioning the ED...an enormous part of me wanted to, but something, something held me back too. I suppose I was afraid. Even to this day, I find actually talking about my ED - not writing, but actually putting my experience into words and speaking it out to someone face to face - very, very difficult. But I couldn't go back now; and his thoughtful expression gently prompted me to reveal the truth.
A nurse took my blood pressure and measured my height and weight, and calculated my bmi. I was dismayed when she told me that I was still underweight and that my bmi was too low. I blinked away my tears and told myself to grow up and be brave. After all, I know why I am still not quite there. I know why I am still not yet at a healthy weight, why I am still quite, well, tiny. For after all, I know that there are those odd times when I let my ED get the better of me. I know that there are those days when I exercise alot more, and don't compensate for these extra calories used by increasing my food intake. I know that there are still those odd, silly little habits which I practice nearly every day and which I know, I know, that I shouldn't - picking bits off bread, choosing the smallest bowl for a smallish portion of cereal, filling my sandwiches way too sparingly with a few tiny slices of cheese or a tiny dollop of tuna mayonnaise...and I guess it just all added up. It just makes me shudder to think, that if my BMI is too low now - now, after having gained some weight: not much, but some - well, what about when I was ill and at my thinnest...how bad could it have been back then? How dangerously close was I to being hospitalised? Of having been put on a life machine to keep my heart beating, my lungs working. How close I was...to death.
I was in the doctors for a total of about three and a half hours on Friday. It was a gorgeous, sunny, crisp October day; and all I had wanted to do, once I had finished my lectures at 12, was to go home and get out of the city, to stroll amongst the golden coppery leaves of Emo, our regular Friday haunt, and to just forget about the world, my life, and the mess I seemed to have made of it. But I'm not going to just resign myself to despair: NO. I've come too far to just give up now. Yes, I didn't want to go to the doctors after my last lecture...but I am so, so glad that I did. once again it's a reminder that I still have work to do, that I still have weight to gain...now more than ever. For starters my foot is not good, and that's probably due to my fragile bone structure and from walking too far and too long and too fast, and not eating quite enough to enable my body to be fully capable for such activity. I need to get back my period, I need to get my bmi up to a healthy average once again. I need to fully - not just partially, but fully - throw off my ED...and become the person I want to be; the real Emily, the real Ganache-Elf. :)