The universal human need to be needed. The basic human rights of love, care and acceptance. The intimacy of belonging to community. These are the emotional truths I wish to explore. How my needs, rights and sense of belonging have, and have not, been met. The consequences to me, and to everyone I connect with, from my lack of self-love.
People with eating disorders often talk about the eating disorder voice that natters away, telling us what to do. Or not. Undermining recovery. Making us doubt ourselves. But I wonder what that means to someone without an eating disorder voice? Or even what it means to other eating disordered people - I doubt we're all the same.
While you'd think fear and loathing around body size would make me eat less and move more - proven methods of weight loss - it does in fact increase my anxiety which makes me eat more food, more often, and much faster. Counter intuitive. But my reality. This in turn makes me more unhappy and I find myself in a vicious downhill spiral.
For me, "triggered" means feeling a compulsion to succumb to the disorder. As a bulimic, that means compensatory eating behaviours. Binging, purging, or both. Finding any means possible to compensate for having eaten. Finding any means possible to reduce the size of my body so clothes hang loosely and my bones become visible. Feeling triggered means a huge risk of relapsing.
Every day - every moment - of my life, I change and transform one way or another. My body constantly regenerates - most of it anyway. Some cells every few days, some every few years. And a few important cells in the brain we apparently need to treat carefully as they're just one-timers. But overall, my body has been changing and transforming since that winning sperm first introduced itself to a welcoming ovum more than 52 years ago.