To my lovlies,
It is time for me to do some soul-searching. I have decided to start fresh. The past few weeks have been challenging for me, and they have opened my eyes and my heart to a future worth striving for.
It all started last Tuesday in my nutritionist’s office. We spoke lightly to each other, and I acted rather carefree. I often put up this façade, although inside I am cringing. I worried about what the scale would show. Would I be down? Up? Typically, I cram a lot of watery food into my stomach before visiting her, so that the scale will go up. I wear pants and a baggy t-shirt, trying to “put on” a little weight. You see, I have not been the weight she wishes me to be all year.
I hopped on the scale, and her smile vanished. She told me I had lost two pounds since the last time she saw me. I was surprised, and not surprised, at the same time. I really had been trying to eat more, but it had not worked. Well, she was clearly upset. I was not perturbed. She told me that I needed to step up my game.
Usually, I take this as an incentive to eat a little more, gain two pounds, and be rid of her distress. She has never really been a stickler. In truth, I sort of enjoy knowing when I drop weight, as I allow myself to eat more of what I am truly craving. I start eating a little more…then I get frightened and revert to eating unnecessary amounts of fruit.
I acted really happy with my mom that day, hoping she would not ask about my weight. I know that she gets very worried when I weight drops. She is an amazingly caring mother, and only want me healthy. Well, my nutritionist, let’s just call her Aubergine, spilled the beans. She e-mailed my mom the morning after our appointment.
While putting on my vegan mascara at the mirror, I heard my mom take a sharp intake of breath. She was at the kitchen table at her computer, where she often is responding to e-mail and checking out the latest in Yahoo! news. I panicked. I called to her, hoping against hope that she had read some terrible story about another crash or another this or another that. The answer was exactly what I feared. Why didn’t you tell me?
That morning, we had an appointment with my endocrinologist, a tall skinny woman who I am rather self-conscious around. She saw me in tears, and asked what was wrong. My mom answered curtly, saying that we had just found some unfortunate news about my weight. The Endocrinologist checked her chart and told us I was the same weight as I had been the last time she checked. This made my mother tense, and she said she would rather not talk about it. The E pressed on, showing us my growth curve, and telling us I was perfectly healthy at this weight. I was frightened, angry, and disgusted. Obviously, I was a perfectly healthy weight. I was not about to gain 5 f****ing unnecessary pounds.
I saw my therapist the next day and vented my anger to her. I said I had checked my BMI and it was normal. I told her that multiple pediatricians had also said that my weight was fine earlier in the year. I was tired of this silly weight range implemented since my first hospital. I said I just wanted to eat everything I want and exercise when I want.
I said the same thing to my psychiatrist the next day. Both seemed to be on my side.
I took my case to my mom. I said I wanted a second opinion. She said she could understand where I was coming from. She ended up sending an e-mail to my nutritionist, my pediatrician, my therapist, and my psychiatrist.
In the end, of course, everyone sided with Aubergine. Because she is an eating disorder specialist.
I have been freaking out for the past few days: angry, guiltly, frightened about what the future holds and tormented by the lies and circumstances that led me to this moment.
I had to take anti-anxiety meds for the two nights before my appt. with Aubergine, since I was so upset.
Well, my appointment came. In went my mom, to talk to Aubergine first. When I came in, she basically said I needed to gain the weight for my emotional health. I am not buying it. I countered her argument with my own.
I told her that I want to eat everything: all the vegan foods my heart desires. I want to eat vegan chocolate cake and cashew cheese and nut butters and lasagna. But I also want to exercise and feel good about myself.
Whatever the scale reads when I am doing this, that is my healthy weight.
I went on a run for an hour this morning…for the first time in a few weeks. It felt good. It felt great. I felt free.
It is time to take back my life. I will still be followed by a team of healthcare practitioners, but I will also be fueling myself in the ways my body wants.
Numbers are for calorie-counting, weight-obsessed eating disorder patients. I strive to leave this arena.
Once and for all.
Because, hey, who doesn’t want cake?