The Ultimate Cheat Day - Battling Body Issues

****Trigger warning. This post contains details of Eating Disorders****

I have had body issues for almost as long as I have been alive. This is quite a personal post, it also involves pizza, but I feel like the sake of my own sanity I need to post about it.

When I was 11 I was unhappy. I look back almost 11 years later and think, what could I have possibly been uphappy about? My parents have raised to be the best person I can, independent, confident, polite, well mannered and a person not afraid to fight for my own beliefs- even when it contradicts theirs. 

When I was 6 years old, we moved to Darlington. The first 6 years were the best. I lived in an army village and we were all a massive family, we went on adventures together, school together, mini-holiday's together and always had a lot of children to play with. As army life goes, there comes a time where they must move on. When I was 6 years old, it was ours.

Forever a happy child.

At first I was excited. I'm a people person, growing up with hundreds of children and a mother who works with them, I developed this need for people. I hate being alone. When I moved to Darlington I saw a new adventure, new people, new school.

From the age of 6 to 11 I developed my first best friendship with someone. Army people don't tend to form best friendships as we know any day we could have to move and because there was so many of us, there was no point in keeping in touch. For these five years I attended an amazing Primary School, the teachers were supportive and encouraged our development and I was the class clown. Of course you had your stereotypical class bullies but they didn't affect me too much. The last two years did suck a bit as I wasn't so active (going from miles of greenland to a town with a park every two miles took it's toll on my activity outside). I gained a lot of weight and the bullying got worse but I had the strength to fight it and a best friend who was my metal armour.


I don't know my ages exactly, I believe I was 5 on the left and about 8 or 9 on the right. I used to refuse to leave the house without dressing like a spice girl first. Ha!

When I was 11, my best friend and I went to separate secondary schools. Again, I saw adventure and new people but this was the worst five years of my life truth be told. The bullying got worse and broke my spirit. My self esteem and confidence went through the floor and I developed an eating disorder that would last until my final year. This is the first time in my life I had truly ever felt alone.



I lost more weight after these photos were taken a few years ago but refused to be in any more photos. Also, when I was larger I refused to be in photos too. This was taken at the height of my anorexia. 

I don't blame anyone for this eating disorder. I believe it was self rooted and inevitable. Some people are programmed to develop problems that others would handle differently or not develop at all.

I was good at hiding it. I became a bad student at school to fit in with my new group of friends. They encouraged me to continue with starving myself until my family found out and sought treatment. 

I hated therapy. They blamed my family for me developing an eating disorder and one Doctor said to a 14 year old me, "Eating is not that hard." When you have any form of Eating Disorder, eating is extremely difficult. You are constantly in this state of shame and guilt and food becomes not a thing for survival but something that is out to destroy you. You feel ridiculed by people who may not even be paying attention to you and eating the smallest amount of food can make you extremely ill. At this point in my life, I also had three girls - my best friends, who became abusive bullies. Even my school bullies felt sorry for me and left me alone because of that. 

During treatment I faked getting better to get out of it which was the worst thing I could have done. During this time I became bulimic. My parents monitored my eating out of pure worry and I couldn't disappoint due to all the pain and worry I had caused already. I would eat everything in sight and then secretly purge it when they weren't around. This escalated over the next year. I became addicted to food but still not wanting to be this 'fat' person I could see in the mirror. 

Because of all the food that was disappearing, my parents clicked to what was happening and re-signed us all up to therapy. This time I recognised that I was sick and was officially diagnosed with 'EDNOS' - Eating Disorder Not Otherwise Specified. Due to both elements of days without food - anorexia, and the ultimate binge and purge - the bulimic aspect.

I finally gained control of my eating disorder when I was 16. I woke up one day and went downstairs for breakfast with my family. I sat down to eat toast with butter like nothing had happened and had the whole family staring at me. I somehow clicked myself out of it. I had no voice in my head, no guilt and no desire to rid of the food I was consuming. A while later I was signed out of therapy. This was the year I also told the three girls to fuck off. In them words exactly. No-one dictates my life apart from me and how much of a shitty friend would you have to be to manipulate and bully someone you call your best friend. No time for people like that any more. 

5 years of pure hell and for once in my life I actually felt happy about food. I relapsed a few times but made sure to stay on track.

When I was 19 I dated a guy who lived on junk food. I was healthy in college and at the start of University, my relapses became minimal and my family had finally stopped being worried. I had a great set of friends that I did everything with but as life went on, we eventually grew apart.

I don't know what happened here. I gave up my healthy lifestyle and started mimicking his. I would eat takeaway constantly, junk food all day long and when I started gaining weight I excused myself with the notion of "I'm rebelling against the eating disorder which messed up so many years of my life."

Over a year later I broke up with that boyfriend for many reasons. One of the top ones was that I was so low in self esteem, unhealthily overweight, had 0 confidence and just generally had a really bad year with a lot of stuff.

I'm turning 22 next week and have finally started to be healthy in my lifestyle again. I want to shed a few pounds because I am unhealthily overweight. There are a lot of bigger and thinner women who are perfectly healthy and I love that so much! I exercise daily and have the most wonderful support from my boyfriend (I owe him so much, he changed my life in so many ways, for the better), family and friends who actively encourage me but don't demean me for my weight or past mistakes. 

Jamie and I took a break for our usual clean routine to enjoy junk food and a social night out.

 I have no muscles. I mean, I obviously do but they are not built up. My organs are suffering from years of abuse with food and I am changing my diet to become healthy. I have taken up cycling and will eventually join a gym and swimming classes. Another important thing to remember is that everyone has their own pace of doing things. 

Also, Junk food is not the enemy. Food in general is not the enemy. I indulged in a night out and a cheat day that involved dominoes, milkshakes and slushies. I don't feel the need to punish myself just because I didn't fancy clean eating that day. Everything in moderation. 







The Ultimate Cheat Day. 

No two people are the same and that's what needs to be taught. Positive body image, not how much we should weigh. Body shaming is disgusting and can ruin lives no matter what gender or how old a person is. 

I think it's important to encourage women and men, boys and girls and everything in between to be healthy and positive. It doesn't matter what size you are as long as you are healthy and happy. It took me 22 years and a lot of unhappiness to figure this out.


2 comments:

  1. I have to leave a comment! I saw your post on Zusterschaps & feel this really relates to me. I'm suffering with an ED, and sadly there was no click day for me- maybe I don't have the motivation like you do. But reading what you have said is inspiring! You have done so well. For me, the negative words are in my head not others around me; but I like the positive attitude that you hold. So keep it up :D

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    1. Awww sweetie, I'm so sorry to hear that <3 I had the head ones too and it's so freaking hard but hopefully you'll have the strength to one day conquer it! I'm always here for support! It's a bumpy road but inner belief is the truly the key and everyone has motivation, you gotta fake it til you make it! <3 You are a strong, beautiful person that can take on the world! Thank you for your kind words :3 <3

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