Not Gonna Be Fun
I came across this in the $1 aisle at Target today, and like a dumbass, I bought it. Because… well, I have REALLY bad eating habits. Like today? I ate 4 Oreos. Nope, not missing the rest of the list, that’s what I ate. In a 24 hour period. Well, probably more likely a 48-72 hour period.
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I wrote that up there on the Tuesday the 5th. Tonight is Saturday the 9th. Since I wrote that… I’ve kept track of what I’m eating. And in all honesty, I’m eating more than usual, because I know it’s being tracked, and Jeff has really been on my ass about it (though, looking at what I’m eating, I can’t fault him). So, here we go. My menu for this past (almost) week.
Tuesday: 4 Oreos and probably 3 sips of the milk I dunked it in.
Wednesday: (coerced – he wouldn’t eat unless I ate with him) 3/4 cup rice krispies, half a banana, and about 2 oz of milk (cause I couldn’t drink the leftover milk)
Thursday: 1 cup dry froot loops (all on my own – I just wanted to make him happy)
Friday: uhm… a cookie. A chips ahoy white fudge chip cookie.
Saturday: Just downed 6 oreos and I feel like my stomach is going to burst (this was after Jeff offered me some of every single food item we have in the hotel room, which is quite a variety).
So yeah. My eating habits? Suck. I was diagnosed as anorexic when I was 14, and have struggled with it on and off (mostly on) since then, so 20 years now. Holy shit. I was 14 TWENTY years ago – all of a sudden I’m feeling my age, lol@!!!
I had a really bad stretch this past year. Here’s kinda how it’s gone over the past few years. Around 2005/2006 I had a really bad manic episode, so they added an antipsychotic to my antidepressants. That antipsychotic added about 40 lbs to the healthy (though NOT happy) 120 I was at the time. So at 5′ ZERO inches, I was 160. Way overweight, by anyone’s standards, not only mine. I couldn’t get the weight off… I had gone from being in a size 2 to a size 13 in less than 6 months, and even though I stopped the medication, the weight stayed on.
I finally started losing it in 2009 when I was getting ready to and finally did leave my ex – stress, alcohol and pills don’t do much for you calorie wise. It came off pretty steadily, and I stayed at that 120 until last year.
Opiates aren’t healthy for the body in any form, but it turns out that heroin is a lot harder on your system than prescribed (though abused) narcotics. When I got locked up, I was 96 lbs. At my worst, a few weeks later, I weighed 82 lbs. The hell of heroin withdrawal stripped the last few pounds of anything that resembled fat or muscle. Even I could see how sick I looked, how unhealthy. I was so glad that Jeff was only able to see me in passing, through the glass, in baggy clothing. That he couldn’t see how I was literally down to skin and bones. That my (though nowhere near perky, thanks to my kids, lol) 36C/D boobs were lucky if they would fill an A cup. (I bitch because my boobs sag from gestating and breastfeeding 2 kids – but let me tell you, I was so glad there were no mirrors, because there was NOTHING there but skin. To me, that was the worst part of the extremely low weight. Every morning, I woke up with new bruises, depending on how I slept. If I slept on my right side, my ankle, knee, hip, ribs, and shoulder would be black and blue. Every day.
I was trying to get into rehab (I was clean in jail, didn’t think I needed it, but hey, if it would get me out of there…) to avoid a jail sentence, and was told straight out that no rehab would take me at that weight. They wouldn’t take the risk, medically. So I busted my ass to add some pounds back on. I’d take the servings of potatoes that anyone else didn’t want at breakfast, lunch, or dinner, and save them in a bowl until bedtime – mix in a tiny bit of seasoning from a package of ramen soup, and eat it, cold.
Let me tell you… I am the definition of picky eater. I make 3 year olds look easy. I have a very short list of foods that I eat – though Jeff has been working on getting me to at least TRY new things. Ask me if I like something, and I’ll tell you no. Chances are, I’ve never tried it. I didn’t try seafood (other than tuna or fish sticks at age 7) until 2 years ago. Lol – that I actually DON’T like.
The local newspaper where we were locked up ran an article last year bragging about how they feed their inmates on FAR less than$1.00 per day. Think about that. I don’t care how you’re cooking in bulk, to feed a person what’s considered a balanced diet (3500 calories per day – keep the inmates lethargic and lazy) on less than ONE DOLLAR per day, for all THREE meals. I didn’t eat a bite for the first 2 weeks. The water is noted for having one of the highest arsenic contents in the country, so gagging that down wasn’t easy either. Turns out you CAN taste arsenic… or something else in that nasty water. But, eventually, even I had to eat. Slowly, my standards lowered. What I gagged at the sight of during week 1, I was calling my “favorite meal” by week 12. With Jeff and I both locked up, there wasn’t anyone on the outside that could help us out with money to buy they fancy stuff – ramen, sugar, coffee, crackers, peanut butter, even things shampoo that works, or conditioner or underwear, stamps and paper to write home… you’re given a comb, a pen, shampoo that doesn’t work, soap that could clean your car tires, a 4″ toothbrush, and a sample size deodorant. Anything else is a luxury you must pay for. Anyway… my whole jail experience and perspective on inmates and the justice system is another post.
For the first few weeks, I threw up everything I put in me – food, water, juice, anything. I couldn’t keep anything down. But like I said, your standards drop. So around week 4 I started gaining… by the time I left after a little over 3 months, I was up to 111.
And since getting out, I’ve gained another 10 or 15. I’m at about 122, last I checked. Healthy, according to charts. But I’m miserable – I feel huge at this weight. I cried the first time I saw the scale go over 100 pounds. Seriously – I went back to my cell, laid on my bunk, and cried. I was content at 99 pounds. Maybe it’s a mental thing, the double digits as opposed to the triple.
I swore that being in jail cured me of my anorexia. That I would never deprive MYSELF of food, of nutrition, of things I enjoy eating again, now that I’d experienced what it was like to have it taken away. But I do. I make excuses – we live in a hotel, we don’t have a lot of money, etc. But I don’t have caviar tastes when it comes to food (Shoes and purses, yes. Food, no.) Cereal, fruit cups, yogurt, bagels, grilled cheese, pizza, chicken noodle soup, anything italian… those are the foods on my “approved” list. And every single one of them (except the italian, pizza, and bagels) are currently in this hotel room, in the mini fridge or the drawer. Yet I don’t eat them.
I’ve learned not to feel, notice, or give in to the physical feeling of hunger. I don’t know WHY I do it. I don’t know if it’s a way of punishing myself, of depriving myself, of hurting myself. I’m currently wearing either a (little girls’) size 14 or a womens’ 5, depending on the brand, the style, and the fabric. How can I complain about my weight? I see so many women struggle with obesity, and I feel guilty. Guilty that I’m nowhere near obese and yet I see myself as fat and disgusting. Yet I can look at a woman who wears a 14, or a 22, or whatever, and SEE HER BEAUTY. I want to get to a point where I can see my own – regardless of the weight I’m at. I’m not sure if 99 is within the healthy range for my height. It’s become a mental obsession to me, though.
Yet I KNOW – with every bit of my brain, every bit of my heart, that NOT EATING AT ALL is not going to get me to that weight. I know from experience that my metabolism shuts down, and I stop losing. And now I have this obsession with walking… so I’m not eating at all and walking for 2-4 hours per day. The adding exercise to no food probably WILL have an impact. I don’t own a scale, so I’m not sure where I am right now – I haven’t weighed myself since October. But I know my jeans are tight. One pair doesn’t even fit anymore.
My caloric intake? Comes from what I drink all day. The only way I drink coffee is very light and very sweet. Iced coffee was a concoction we managed to make occasionally in jail – and that’s ALL I’ve been drinking since we got out. I take a 16 oz cup, add (OMG, I can’t believe I’m actually admitting this) 5 tsp sugar, 2 tsp instant coffee, and 2 sweet n low – then fill the cup with milk. No water, just milk. So I drink about 4 of those a day on average. I drink it to disguise the hunger, to be able to say “but look, I’m drinking a lot of milk”. I used to ALWAYS have a bottle of cherry coke with me. Then it was coffee from a specific convenience store, then hot chocolate made at home, then tea from home, and now this. But at least the coffee and tea contained water – it wasn’t pure milk. 64 oz of milk a day? Holy shit. That’s crazy. No wonder I don’t eat…
I haven’t even touched on what the horrible diet does to my pain levels, my autoimmune issues, or even my bipolar/anxiety.
I never claimed to be a rocket scientist – it just clicked in my head that the ONLY way I’m going to change my eating habits is if I change my drinking habits first. Ugh.
I just ranted here… I accomplished nothing, but I got a whole lot of shit out. The anorexia is just a symptom of my issues, I know that. I just need to be willing to do something about it, and right now… I don’t know if I am.