I know that I wanted this blog to move away from my eating disorder, but I feel like this year is really special so I wanted to write a post about it.
5 years ago I got woken up on my day off ridiculously early (it was probably only 7 or 8, but whatever) to go to a doctor appointment. My mom had set it up so that it was just your regular yearly check up but we both knew it was happening for a different reason. I had a 17.1 BMI, which at my age still put me in the “healthy” range but would put me drastically under today. And we all know that BMI is complete bullshit. I didn’t at 16, though, and every day I checked my weight and calculated how many more pounds I would have to lose to finally be in the underweight category. My mom used her BMI chart religiously while I was growing up to check if I was healthy or not, so I internalized that.
My resting heart rate was somewhere between 38-42 BPM. I can’t quite remember. They also didn’t tell me. I do remember get a test done and the lady taking it took it 3 times because my heart was so slow she thought the machine was broken.
I should have been hospitalized they told me. They said my mom would have to take my pulse while I was sleeping because if it was anything below 40 then there was a high risk of me dying in my sleep. They would call us the next day and we would figure out the next step. She took it while I was awake. The doctor never called back. My mom didn’t call them. I was “perfect” in her eyes. Nothing was wrong with me. After I was officially diagnosed with anorexia nervosa and depression she drove me to my doctor appointments but that was that. She didn’t participate at all in my recovery. In fact, she hindered it by putting me on a pedestal and eating my food.
That was 5 years ago. 5 years ago I looked like death. I honestly don’t know how I managed to do hours upon hours of cardio and ab workouts in my bedroom every day while eating maybe a maximum of 800 calories. And honestly it’s amazing I lived long enough to see 2015. It’s half a decade and about 20 pounds later and I am stronger, smarter, and most importantly alive. I know when to eat, what to eat, how much to eat, and not the distorted version my anorexic brain told me 5 years ago. I’ve had a lot of desserts this week. I have successfully lost weight without becoming obsessive about it. I can run, I can dance, I’m Zumba and personal training certified, I’m about to graduate from college.
Maybe I don’t love my body every day, but I love that my heart didn’t give up on me. I do still struggle. Not every day, but some days. Some days it’s just a struggle to eat a sufficient amount because I’m still used to eating so little. It’s not intentional anymore.
This morning I ate a banana with peanut butter, did 45 minutes of Pilates and 50 minutes of Zumba, and then I had some oatmeal. I’m going out with some friends for lunch. It feels so normal and that’s exciting. I’m going out with some friends and I’m not going to freak out about where we go to eat or what I eat. I’m going to just have fun. I won’t have to bounce my leg or tap my feet and move my hands as much as possible to try to burn every single little calorie.
Every year that goes by I get a little bit better. If this is where I am after 5 year, with virtually no professional help, where will I be in another 5? I’m excited to see!