It has been 3 months and 23 days since Male died. In that time, I’ve been merely subsisting, and barely, at that.
I smoke entirely too much. Other than walking my dog, I don’t exercise. I eat poorly, if at all. A lot of times, I forget to eat. The only healthy thing I do for myself is drink lots of water. For the first few weeks after Male died, my friends forced me to eat, because it just wasn’t something I had any interest in doing. They slowly stopped forcing me, so I slowly stopped eating, or at least, eating well.
On an average weekday, I have one of those baby-food-for-adults protein bars for breakfast and/or lunch, and if I eat dinner at all, I eat garbage food.
I’m not “building muscle” or “recovering fast” like PowerBar thinks I am; I’m slowly and subconsciously trying to kill myself. I am not healthy, and the saddest part is that I don’t really care.
I have Body Dysmorphic Disorder, and when I was in high school, I was anorexic. I’m still anorexic, because that’s not the type of thing that ever entirely goes away, though I’m not as obsessive about it as I once was. My anorexia now is not conscious. It is not a deliberate attempt to lose; it’s sadly, just habit. No matter what or how I eat, no matter how thin I am, I never see myself that way.
I don’t know how much I weigh because I don’t own a scale. Owning a scale just leads to obsession, so I don’t. I don’t know how much I weigh, but I know whether I’ve gained or lost by how my clothes fit. I know how healthy I am by where the weight I do have lands. Currently, any excess weight I do have lands in unhealthy places.
A few years ago, a friend had a birthday party at the gun range. Someone took a full-body picture of me firing a shotgun. I was horrified. I was fat. I was probably the fattest I’d ever been, which to the rest of you without anorexia and BDD, wasn’t fat at all. A lot of you would look at that picture of me and wish you were that thin, whereas I was horrified. I immediately began the process of losing it.
A few months later, Male and I were lying in bed and he said I was nothing but a skeleton. He could feel my ribcage without even trying. I went from one extreme to the other in just a few months. My whole life has been about bouncing from one extreme to the other.
When I was in therapy immediately after Male died, my therapist was worried most about substance abuse issues. She was wrong. My biggest issue is not drugs or alcohol; it is apathy. From where I am at the moment, it would be super simple to become an obsessive anorexic skeleton again. All I’d have to do to get there is continue on this path.
The grief and depression and PTSD have been pushed to the top of the list since Male died. Body image issues land at the bottom. While I haven’t been paying attention, the anorexia and BDD have taken over. It’s just that easy. Turn your back for a minute, and they have their way.
It is a constant struggle and lately, I’ve been losing it. My cheerleader, my champion, the man who would force me to deal head-on with my issues is dead and gone. I stopped paying attention and the they took over. It’s exhausting business to continually fight the demons back. It’s exhausting business to care enough to try.
And, it makes me feel like such a first-world wuss, whingeing about body image issues, when so many people in the world are starving to death without wanting to, because they have no food to eat, not because they’re simply not eating like a goddamned idiot.
It really boils down to asking yourself, “Do you want to live or do you want to die?” 90% of the time, I want to live. It’s the other 10% that’s the problem, and that decimated negative percentage can easily grow if I’m not ever vigilant.
My issues make me feel like a big crybaby when I think about the hardships that others endure. When I view the big picture, all of these little trifles melt into nothingness, and I think, “Eat something, dumbass.”
Still, it’s never that simple to overcome a lifetime of abuse and bad habits, is it?