“I am ashamed. I am embarrassed. I am disappointed in myself. But most importantly, I am so glad it’s finally over. It is my most shameful, and painful secret and this is the hardest thing I’ve done in awhile but I am ready to step out of my comfort zone and share it. I expect judgement and I am afraid that people may look at me differently but everyone faces struggles and this has been the biggest struggle in my 20 years of life. I believe wholeheartedly in the importance of talking, of being open and honest. I believe in speaking about the uncomfortable and unspoken things in life, because when a subject is untouchable, it is far too powerful. And I don’t want to live my life afraid of anything.
I started my new adventure on July 4, 2013 when I left the state of Texas with my car packed full of my belongings and Wilmington, North Carolina set in my GPS. After an awful senior year of poisonous friendships, getting stabbed in the back time after time, and letting my self confidence and happiness shoot to the floor I knew I was ready for something different. I wanted change. Change of scenery, change of people, but really I wanted to change how I felt about myself. I wasn’t happy anymore and I felt like there was nothing left for me in The Woodlands so I moved 1,240 miles away in hopes of starting fresh with a clean slate.
I met my roommate and we moved in on August 8th. We talked about how we were going to be so healthy and work out all the time and have “kicking bods” for spring time so we could roller blade around the beach loop in our bikinis. Well, healthy is not the word you would use to describe more than half of my freshman year of college. One night me and my roommate decided we wanted to make cookies. We went to the store bought so much cookie dough- ended up eating more than half of it and baked the little of what we had left. That was the night it all began. I was so full from cookie dough I was uncomfortable. I couldn’t sleep so I did the LAST thing I thought I would ever do. I walked into the bathroom, stood over my toilet, stuck my finger down my throat and made myself throw up. I cried myself to sleep that night. The next night we ordered chinese food and I walked into the bathroom and made myself throw up again. This time, I fell asleep like a baby. And just like that I was making myself throw up after every meal (if I were home at least). Letting a full meal settle in my stomach was something I did not let myself do. I continued to workout, ate whatever I wanted and then went straight for the bathroom. This continued and not one of my friends ever had any idea. My roommate was clueless about the whole thing and sometimes I would honestly hope she caught me. I needed someone to yell at me and tell me what I was doing was SO wrong (even though I knew it was). But nobody had any idea and I could not find the way to tell anyone. The only person who I truly felt comfortable telling was my best friend and she struggled with ED herself. I was ashamed and embarrassed of what she was going to say to me so I continued making my secret trips to the bathroom and kept hurting my body. I was playing with the devil and I was too scared to admit it. This continued until around Christmas time. My best friend came to visit for a couple days and we went out to Mexican. We got home and I immediately said I needed to “take a shower” which was true, but first I had to throw up everything I just indulged. I closed my bedroom door (where she was), closed my bathroom door, turned on my bathroom light and fan, got it over with, took a shower, and walked back into my bedroom to a very scared and pissed off face. I knew I was caught but I played dumb and immediately asked what was wrong. She broke down and just kept saying “WHY? WHY WHY WHY? You’ve seen everything I’ve been through…WHY?” And she was right. One hundred and ten percent completely right. I saw how much ED ate away at her life and I still let it take control over mine.
It started to get a little better after I got caught from the one person whose opinion means most to me, but nothing can just go away just like that. It takes time. I went days where I wouldn’t eat a single thing besides an apple because the thought of food scared me. I also went days where I would eat an entire pizza, walk into the bathroom and ask myself what in the hell I was doing. These are the consequences, because you cannot keep doing this to yourself. Some days I had the will power to walk away from the toilet and go for a walk, or just go lay in bed and fall asleep but there were also days when I would stick my finger to the back of my throat and try and make myself forget about everything I ate.
I haven’t made myself throw up since May 20, 2014. I went to church by myself on Easter Sunday and that is a Sunday I will never forget. (I have never shared this story with anyone because it is so personal to me). I walked into the service after having thrown up late that Saturday night and I just cried. Immediately this older lady walked over to me and asked “Now how could a beautiful young lady like yourself be crying on this gorgeous Easter Sunday? What boy do I need to go after?” she said. I continued to just cry and cry and she sat there with me until I was ready to talk. I spilled everything. I told her about throwing up, my best friend catching me, and how I just didn’t feel comfortable in my own skin anymore. She took my hand and walked me down the hall to the bathroom. She faced me towards the mirror, put her hands on my shoulders and said I want you to look at yourself and repeat after me.. “I am beautiful. On the inside and out. I am beautiful. And no one needs to believe that besides myself. No boy, no family member, no friends need to tell me that because as long as I know and BELIEVE it, it’ll be true forever.” And that was the last time I stuck my finger down my throat because I finally truly believed that no matter my weight, what I eat, or what people want to call me.. I AM BEAUTIFUL.
Yes, there are days that I don’t feel it, but thats life. And that’s just something I have to take day by day. If I can give anyone any kind of advice I’d say whenever you pass a mirror, stop for a second, look at yourself (because you know you do it anyway) and tell yourself YOU ARE BEAUTIFUL. Because you truly are. Don’t ever let the number on the scale define who you are. Raise your middle finger to that number and tell yourself numbers don’t matter. Be confident, point out your flaws (everyone has them), point out your greatest features (it’s okay to be a little cocky) and always remember you are beautiful, you are important, you are unique and special in your own way, you are talented and most importantly- YOU ARE IRREPLACEABLE.
I want to personally apologize to all of those people who looked up to me and my weight loss. I truly did lose all that weight the right way- by eating healthy and doing insanity. I don’t have an exact answer for why I made myself do what I did this past year, but I did. It’s over with. And I’ll never look back. I still struggle some days but thats normal. One day I know I’ll look back stronger than ever and realize this was just a little detour in my long journey ahead of me.”
-written by a beautifully-and-wonderfully-made guest writer.