Losing myself... Summer of 2011

Losing myself... Summer of 2011

A Story by Jb

A basic summary of my evolution in a binge eater.


I really don’t have any reason to be writing this, my hand have no purpose anymore my existence is meaningless. Everyone has left me to my own insanity. And I just, well I just can’t take myself. This has been the worst summer of my life. I had everything perfected. I really did. I got out of Carolina House last February, with so much hope. I didn’t look half bad. Yes, I had just gained 30 lbs., but I was still thin. And I didn’t have to worry about working-out for half the day, or subsisting on a rigid diet of Tuna and Protein Shakes. The world seemed lighter, even though I was heavier. And I was hopeful. I had a new life, a life free of Anorexia.

Those next few months were magic. I embraced living. I would wake up every morning, just so happy to be home. I’d eat a normal breakfast, whatever I wanted to eat, and then do a short workout. Exercise didn’t have to consume my day. I was eager to start running again, but felt that I could wait. Because I had other things in my life to be preoccupied with. Friends again, a family again, and a relationship with God.

For the first time, people were actually noticing me, too. I had been so skeletal before, that I just brushed by the surface. It didn’t matter if I was present or not, because simply wasn’t there. I had a boyfriend before I was hospitalized in October, but that just felt so awkward and wrong. I didn’t really like him, but he was interested in me, and I didn’t feel that I could do any better. So I settled. And he broke up with me as soon as my heart started giving out.

But now, I had a guy interested in me that I was actually attracted to. He was older, which was a plus, because I always find guys to be so immature. We talked a bit and then he took me out for the first time eon Valentine’s Day. Yes, Valentine’s Day 2011 was much different from Valentine’s Day 2010.

The same time last year, I was guzzling down gallons of water, in preparation for my weigh in. I stepped on the scale, only to see that I fell short of my parent’s “expectations” with weight gain. So of course a big fight ensued. My mom said the same stuff that she always said, how I didn’t want to get better, how I was insane, anything she could think of to bring me down.

I thought really hard. I had about 12 pounds to gain until I was “well” by my parent’s standards. Did I want to live in limbo for the rest of my life, always questioning what “well” felt like? I really didn’t. I was still dancing at the time, and wanted to be successful with that. And I was planning on running cross country and track for my college the next year. So I took a leap of faith.

I called for my brother and asked him if he would come with me to go get food. I drove to McDonald’s, and got a double cheeseburger with a medium fry. Then I went to Walgreens and bought a pint of ice-cream, came home, and ate everything.

What had I just done? I couldn’t believe it. I just ate about 3000 calories of unbalances food- not nearly enough protein there. So I cooked up a batch of protein powder pancakes and ate them with some pepper slices to feel al little “healthier”, but I still was miserable. And really just wanted EVERYTHING to be over. I had even reported back to my mom what ate, thinking she’d be proud. But all she did was continue to scream, this nasty shrieking scream she does that I hate. It sounds like she’s dying. And she’ll never shut up. So I figured I shut her up with my own measures…

I was in my dad’s office and looked around the room, opening his briefcase. Inside I found a bottle of Excedrin, extra strength. I had overdosed before, but never enough to kill myself. I had been in psyche wards before, but never long enough to actually help myself. And I really didn’t believe that help was available. So I opened the bottle, and counted how many pills it contained. 48. That sounded like a good number. I got a glass of water, and started downing them in handfuls of six. And afterwards, I still didn’t feel like it was enough.

So at one in the morning, I showered the internet for ways to die. And wandered into my laundry room, pouring some bleach into a glass. Then I stopped myself for some reason. I just couldn’t do it; I was scared of what would happen. I wanted an easy death. So I went upstairs to shower, hoping that the pills would be enough. It was time for me to go to bed anyhow, because I was ridiculously tired for some reason.

Coming out of the shower, I was weak. I stumbled into bed and started sweating profusely. Then finally, I fell asleep, my stomach cramping up. I prayed to God to not have me throw up. And then woke up again in the middle of the night, needing to go to the bathroom, drenched in sweat. I stood up and then fell over, a complete mess. I couldn’t get up. I don’t’ remember how I made it to the bathroom or even back to my bed. But I do remember waking up at six that next morning.

My stomach, it was BURNING. And everything started coming up. Oh God, I hated this, hated this, hated thing, why did I have to take those pills? I couldn’t swallow anymore… it felt so horrible… everything escaped me and spewed out all over my bed. It looked like coffee grounds. They always said on medicine bottles to call your doctor if you have coffee ground vomit.

I wasn’t planning on calling a doctor though, because I knew that doing so would simply warrant another trip to the not so fun psyche ward. Instead, my mom came into my room and was all nice. She helped me into the bathroom, where I continued to vomit violently. She helped me over the next four days, as I endured a 104 degree fever and severe stomach upset. She thought I had the flu. I couldn’t dare tell her what I had done- but I was scared. Scared of what I had done to my liver, my kidneys, and my body. I wasn’t well at all. But somehow I came out of it.

I came out of it only to live in hell for another 9 months. Until I ended up in Carolina House, came out, and was at that Valentine’s Day. Happy and healthy. A completely different person. I could barely believe it, how good everything felt.

I didn’t end up staying with the guy I went out with, because I realized that I was in love with another guy that I’d had feelings for quite some time. I was bold and told him how I felt. And he wanted to go out with me. Problem was though; he was my brother’s friend. So that caused some major friction and nothing worked out.

During the next month, I slowly unraveled. I looked at my body with great dissatisfaction. My calves were too small, my thighs were too big, and even though I was a size 0, I wanted to “tone up” a bit. Plus, there was a girl in the outpatient program I was going to who was only a little bit bigger than I was, always talking about how her doctor said she could lose weight, how badly she needed to lose weight, and how she ate 1400 calories every day. Well hell, if she could do that, why couldn’t I?

So I started doing calve raises at night. I started taking long walks in addition to my daily exercise, and I started making sure that I didn’t eat a calorie over 1900. I’ve always had a fast metabolism, so for me, this really wasn’t that much. And I lose five pounds in a week doing this.

My treatment team was mad at me. I was so satisfied though. So I added in some more exercise. Strength training, I called it. A half an hour of sit-ups, pushups, and squats in the morning, at 5:00 am, before anyone else woke up. I was started to get my six pack back. I was starting to get “myself” back. Too bad that the only way I knew myself was through anorexia. I was slipping again.

But I continued on. Losing those five pounds was enough to set my head off into a tailspin, obsessing over food again. I WASN’T going to relapse though. No. I refused to go back to the anorexia. But something else was happening. There would be some days where I couldn’t control how much I ate. Where I would be obsessing until I ate a 300 calorie snack or something. In hindsight, while 300 calories isn’t that much, it felt so horrible to me. I couldn’t be doing this; I had NEVER been so out of control before.

So I tried my best to keep busy. I started volunteering at the local animal shelter. And I started going out a lot. I started drinking and getting high. I loved it. I had never felt so free before. I told someone who I thought was my friend about my new lifestyle, and she ratted me out. Once my parents found out, they came down hard, and the fun was over.

Although I continued to remain focused on my body. I loved helping out at the animal shelter because it primarily consisted of walking the dogs. I could walk 4 miles a day easily by going there for 3 hours. And I loved animals, too. My workout sessions were becoming longer- I was doing about 45 minutes of cardio a day, along with an hour and a half with the strength training. I felt so good when I was working out. I felt strong, happy, like I could tae n the world. And my body was changing.

My size 0 jeans started sagging off my a*s. I had no access to a scale, so had no clue how much I weighed. But I didn’t care- I looked good in my opinion. No too thin, just right. But I could still be a bit more toned. The problem was, I was eating more. And this scared me. Some days, I’d eat as much as 2300 calories. Even though I used to eat 3000 calories a day last year, WHILE losing weight, I was also working out for 4 hours a day at the time. And in that moment, I couldn’t afford to be working out 4 hours a day.

Afraid of my out-of-control eating, I went to my doctor. And she told me that I needed to be eating at least 2500 calories a day, and that my body was just craving food. This gave me a bit of peace of mine. But I still couldn’t bring myself to eat the 2500 calories. Not without a lot of turmoil. I may have done it one day. But the rest of the days were like a game. If I could stay under 1900, then I was winning.

So I decided that the best thing to do would be to distract myself more. I was already signed up to take summer courses at my University, but that wasn’t for another month. So I went out, in search of a job. I managed to land a temporary position at Ulta Beauty. The shifts were 8 hours, and having never worked before, this seemed incredibly long. But once I started working, I loved it.

Unfortunately, the job only lasted for two weeks. Once the two weeks were over, I found myself incredibly lonely, because over the past month or so, I had lost contact with most of my friends. I was very depressed. And so obsessed with my food and exercise. Again. After going through three months of HELL in residential treatment, I was slipping back.

So one day, after I had already finished eating my lunch and found myself still hungry, I decided that I wasn’t going to go back to the Anorexia. I told myself I was thin, and could have whatever I wanted to eat. And that’s exactly what I did. About fifteen minutes later, I’d eaten 10 protein bars, and consumed a total of 3200 calories for the day. I looked at the pile of wrappers in dismay. What had I done?

I didn’t know what to do, so I went and told my mom. She didn’t say much, so I just went on with my day. I was good Saturday and Sunday, but the same thing happened again Monday. I did well Tuesday and Wednesday, but binged again Thursday. And then another two decent days followed, until Sunday came. When I binged to 3600 calories.

That day was terrible, because the binging started AS SOON as I woke up. I ate all day, and then went to go workout. For my workouts, I would run up and down on an aerobic step for 45 minutes, in front of the TV. But none of our TVs in the house were working. So I was at a loss. I hadn’t received permission from my physician to start running yet, but HAD to do something. So I said f**k it, laced up my shoes, and headed out the door.

Oh God, my lungs were burning. I used to be one of the best runners on my school’s Varsity team. I used to run 8 miles a day. And now, I'm struggling 5 minutes into the run. But it had also been a good 10 months since I ran last. So I tried to be gentle with myself. In the end, I ended up doing 5 miles at an 8:15 pace, which wasn’t of bad for my first time back.

The next day, I went to my doctor, and she gave me the OK to start running. She also said that with the binging, I should go up to 3000 calories a day. Yeah, right, I was going to willingly eat 3000 calories. I listened to her advice on the running though, and started out doing a half an hour, every other day. I did really good, and by the end of the month, had worked my way up to doing 8 miles at a 7:30 pace.

I was also in school by the end of the month and binging about 4 times a week. By the time June hit, my binges were going up to 7000 calories a day, because I had discovered the magic of drive-threws. I’d go to Taco Bell, McDonald’s, Wendy’s, and Burger King, get all the food and just drive around, eating it.

Someday, I’d do this before classes. And then after class, I’d go to the college gym to burn it all off. I really only gained about 5 lbs. during May. But by the end of June, I had packed on another 15. I was doing very well in school, in spite of this, but so hopeless. One night, I had a dream.

In the dream, I was dancing again. I was thin again. And then I woke up, crying, because I knew I’d never have that body back. I knew that I couldn’t stop eating. So, I went out to the garage, shut the door, and turned on my mom’s car, waiting for the exhaust to kill me. I passed out, and she found me an hour later. F**k. Thanks for ruining my plan.

So back to the psych ward I went. When I came home, I was more depressed than ever, and just stopped working out. I stopped going to class too, but still managed to finish getting all A’s. Once I was done with school, I knew that I needed major help. So I sought out major treatment again. I called Carolina House first.

But Carolina House, being as good of a facility as they are, had a three week waits. And I didn’t feel that I could hold on for another three weeks. So I called elsewhere and settled on a place called Remuda Ranch. They could get me in the next day. So I packed my things and flew out to Arizona, for the biggest waste of time ever.

When I got to the program, I was taken back with the fact that there was no supervision, meaning it was a bunch of girls with eating Disorders, living independently in houses. Houses stocked with food. Well of coruse, I was going to eat. And that, I did. I told my “therapist” there about my binging at the house. And she said that what they could do was put me on “eyesight”, which would mean that I had to sit in the waiting room for 24 hours a day, on a wooden chair.

For the next three days, I sat there. Staring at the wall. They wouldn’t even let me get a shower. This was so fucked up. I started to become very depressed. I told my parents that I needed to leave, but they wouldn’t believe me. During a heated conversation with my mom, I scratched my leg up with my nails. And after the staff saw this, they decided that I needed to go to the inpatient facility.

The inpatient facility was at least monitored 24/7. But all the girls there were sickly thin. Granted, I had once been 70 lbs. at 5’4”, but I was twice that size now, and super self-conscious/depressed around girls so sick that they needed tubes up their nose. I stayed in the inpatient place for a week and then went back down to the lower level of care facility, but knew it wasn’t going to work.

I just had this urgent feeling, telling me that I needed to get out of there. I didn’t really like the girls I was with, I didn’t like the staff, and I was still able to binge. Hell, if I wanted to, I could still have binged from home. SO why pay money just to overeat? I told this to my parents who finally agreed to let me come home. They said that they’d call with the plane ticket the next day.

So I anxiously waited the next day, until 5:00 pm, when I’d heard nothing from my mom or dad. So I called my mom and asked her what was up. She said that she had spoken with my therapist back home, who told her that if I signed out, she wouldn’t be able to see me anymore, and that the insurance company would drop me. So I couldn’t come home.

But I HAD to, like something inside was just telling me that I NEEDED to come home. So I got really pissed at my mom, who said that she was going to come through for me, and decided to go home anyway. I told her that I was going to buy a plane ticket regardless of what she said. And then she broke my heart. My mom told me that if I flew back to Ohio, she wouldn’t take me back into her home. She said she’d take my car, my room, everything, and shut off my phone. So I had to make a really hard decision.

Even with all the cons involved, I knew I needed to get out of that place. So I called literally everybody in my phone, asking for a place to stay. No one would come through for me, because my parents had warned the majority of my family that I’d be calling about this. But one person did. My Aunt Kelly said that I could stay with her. I told her I’d pay rent; help out around the house and everything, in exchange for a bed to sleep on. She agreed. I’d see her at the airport in two days. I was nervous, I was scared, but I had to leave.

The next day, I told my mother that I was “thinking” about what I could do. I just said: thinking” so that she would keep my phone on. I’d pretend that I was still in treatment until I had enough money to pay for my own phone.  So that I did. I packed all my things up.

However, the day that I was supposed to leave, I felt obligated to call my mom and say good-bye, since she said that she would never speak to me again if I were to leave. So I called to do that when she told me that she had gotten something from the insurance company, saying that they weren’t going to cover me anymore.

She asked me if I still had that plane ticket, and I told her yes. She told me to get my a*s on the plane home, and that she’d pick me up at 10 o’clock that night. So I headed off to the airport, anxious to go home. Things would be different. I was going to try harder. I could do this.

Well my mom got sick that day and couldn’t come to pick me up, so my dad did instead. When I got home, it felt so good to be back, but an insecure type of good. Not the same type of contentment that I’d had upon my arrival home from North Carolina. Of course, the next day, I started off with a binge. As well as the next day, and the day after that. I spent most of my time sleeping. And I didn’t start working out again, like I’d said I would.

That month was horrible. I literally lost all hope and basically said to just "f**k it". My mom and I fought so much. I thought about killing myself every night and tried to several times, all unsuccessfully. I would strangle myself, pass out, but always release the grip once I started to black out.

To make matter worse, I started cutting. There was a brief period when I tried to do a Partial program in Cleveland, a program I had done as an Anorexic two times before. Well, being back up there, with all of the old memories of my "glory days" just set me into a tail spin. And all the girls I was with, ofcourse, were Anorexic... so beautifully thin. And then there was me.

The psychiatrist up there started me on some really heavy medications that made my depression even worse. Never again will I go onto effexor. I was so drugged that I didn't care what I was doing to myself. I was in pain and felt like I needed to be punished.

One night, my mom and I had gotten into a really bad fight, when she slammed my dresser up against my wall. This dresser contained all of my dance trophies. I watched the glass ones, the chrystal, the belik that I had spent years and years of practice trying to win, all shatter on the floor. I took the glass after she left and started digging down, as deep as I could. I bled all over my bed and could care less. A few days later, after being in Cleveland with all the perfect girls for a week, I tried a new stratgy.

It was after, of course, another fight with my mom. I was so fed up. In June, I was still thin. In July, I was average (though still gaining weight), and now, I looked heavy. I was a big girl. I had NEVER been a big girl in my entire life, not even before the eating disorder. I was always delicate and thin. But those days were over. I looked at the glass and started carving the word "fat" into my arm.

Later on that day, I actually went outside. I went to sit by my dog as my parents were grilling dinner. My mom looked at my arm in disgust and said, "well, atleast you know how to spell". I was so pissed. The next day I did some more artwork, my skin being the canvas. I carved "fat" onto my arm two more times. As I watched the blood dripping down, I realized how stupid that was. Now I couldn't go anywhere until the wounds healed. That's how impulsitivity is though.

More time past, as I remained completely lost. I was binging every single day, sleeping most of the time, and had completely lost touch with the world. None of my “friends” called or anything, but then again, I didn’t make an effort, either. I was so lonely. And this feeling continued in through August. When I decided that I needed to go back to Carolina House, no matter how long the wait was.

So I called Carolina House, to find out that they actually had an opening! All I needed to do was fill out some paperwork, and get a physical, along with some labs, done by my doctor. No problem. I went to my doctor the next day to find out that I’d gained 14 lbs. in 14 days. I was devastated. I’d lost myself, and had no idea how I was going to come back.

The next day, my doctor called back with the lab results, telling me that I had hypothyroid. HE said that it could be an explanation for my food cravings, depression, and fatigue. I was so relieved. I also had severely low levels of vitamin D, which was another cause of depression. Here I was, thinking that I was going insane, when there was a biological cause to this problem.

I did something different that day, something I hadn’t done in ages. I didn’t binge. Of course, I went hardcore the next day, but I did also started running again that day too. I was SO out of shape that it took me 13 minutes of fighting my body to finish one mile. But at least I tried.

Good things were happening, I even felt confident enough to sign up for classes at college. Maybe I could make it through? I was in an impulsive mood, so I did so. And being in an impulsive mood, I also made some mistakes. I lost respect for myself and didn't care what happened anymore. Now I look back on the things I did during that week, and realize I can never get back what I lost.

So I’m just waiting to go away to Carolina House as soon as possible. I need to get away from myself, get away from this town, all of these people who just don’t care. I can’t stop thinking about it though and regretting it. I regret everything that I’ve done in the past four months. This has officially been the worst summer of my life. I hope it comes to an end soon, but with the way that I binged today, there doesn’t seem to be an end in sight.

© 2011 Jb

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I thought that you were talking about me; now, a fat-assed old woman. With my fifth child, I lost eighteen pounds, because the son-of-a-b***h whom was her father complained about my weight. I don''t binge, but still sometimes don't eat for days and can barely find the energy to make it to the grocery store. I have no idea which parent, but it seemed to be your mother, was causing this. It has been the men, in my life. I know your story, all to well!

Posted 11 Years Ago

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Thank you for your kind words! Yes, this is going to be the beggining of my new book... since switching over from anorexia to binging, I've really noticed a total transformation of myself... I'm wild now, not a care, impulsive as can be... this phase of recovery needs to be documented. I'm actually leaving for residential treatment in an hour so won't be able to "post" for a while... but you can garuntee I'll be writing while I'm gone. Hopefully tthere will be a full story in about three months...

Thanks again from your interest!

Posted 11 Years Ago

Is this the first in a book of many chapters or does it stand alone? I think it's very promising as a book, but it's interesting nonetheless alone. I love flash fiction :-)

Posted 11 Years Ago

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3 Reviews
Added on August 29, 2011
Last Updated on August 29, 2011
Tags: Anorexia, Binge Eating, Virginity



Youngstown, OH

The majority of my life has been consumed by Eating Disorders (no pun intended). I've dealt with severe Anorexia from the age of 13-19, recovered, and now struggle with Bulimia. Depression, Anxiety, a.. more..

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