Fat is NOT a feeling: part 2

“I feel so fat right now.” 

What is that even supposed to mean? The last time I checked, fat is NOT a feeling. I wrote a similar post to this a year ago, so let’s make this post “fat is NOT a feeling: part 2” 

When I think I feel fat, here are some things as to what I really mean:

  • I feel sad and upset with myself right now
  • I feel ashamed for eating and loving my body
  • My eating disorder has me convinced that I can never be beautiful if I eat that food

Or I find myself being happy if I feel skinny. 

  • I am so happy with how I look right now despite the feeling that I will black out.
  • I have no energy to talk to other people but at least I ‘look’ great
  • I can only be happy if I’m skinny 

I have it convinced in my head that being fat is bad but being skinny is good. It makes me believe that if someone is fat they obviously cannot be happy with life. By associating these feelings with the feeling of be fat, it makes me kind of a brat. How can I be advocating for self-love if I still associate fat with those feelings? When I was at my lowest weight I was FAR from happy. When I was at my skinniest I wanted to be dead. Last time I checked, that’s not happiness

Fat does not equal disgust nor does skinny equal happiness. The way our bodies look have no connection to how we should feel.  When I say things like “I feel so fat right now” I need to stop and think how I’m affecting other people. And when I think I feel so “skinny right now” I need to remind myself of those cold hospital rooms. By negatively labeling fat I am just adding to this negative stigma about body image–I am convincing people they need to reflect on their body shape to decide if they’re worthy of happiness. 

Until we are able to come to this conclusion and understanding that our body shape has nothing to do with our outlook on life, we will never be happy. Until we learn to love the person living inside our skin, we will never be happy. 

Fat is not feeling nor is Skinny.  

The relationship continues…

In one of my earlier blogs I talked about my relationship with my scale. My abusive and emotionally unstable relationship with an inanimate object.

Here’s a quick background for new readers: I have been flirting with the scale for years. I remember around age 13 was when I started racing home off the bus to beat my mom so I could weigh in without her knowing. I took baths all the time because the scale was in her bathroom along with the good tub. I would go to the gym just to weigh in and sit in the sauna. It was (and still is unhealthy.) I bought my own scale when I was 17. I kept it secret and drove to the woods to put the box she came in, in the big dumpster. She was a beautiful glass Taylor scale. I weighed myself at least 6 times a day. So like 42 times each week I would know my weight. I began to get good at guessing how much the number would read back. It became routine to weigh myself.

Throughout treatments, therapists and doctors have worked to break me up with the scale, but I have always had access to one. The scale in the bathroom with the good tub was always there- and she still is.

My glass scale ran out of batteries from my frequent weighing in, and I never replaced them….which is probably a good thing. But I still keep her even if she can’t tell me my weight. I don’t won’t to get rid of her. She’s traveled to Ohio, California, and Illinois with me. She’s been with me during my most dangerous and successful times. So, I keep her in my room at home under my dresser.

So let’s move on to current state: we are separated at the moment. I’m supposed to be doing blind weigh ins but I’ve found out my weight each week by doing some distraction. Last week I had a different doctor and she just casually told me my number. It was higher. Closer to the safe zone. I freaked. 

Recovery Liv knows this is good. I need to be at a healthy weight, but Ana still wants me to walk the tightrope with danger. 

I guess this past week, eating has sucked for me. I knew I would be going home and being home = going out to eat. I skipped out on some things I shouldn’t have which makes me feel like I failed myself. 

Today I found out my weight. I’m down again.

I’m happy

I’m scared

I don’t want to lose control

I want to smash all the scales and I want to buy them all

I do not know if I’ll ever be able to simmer this addiction with the number.

So here’s what I’m going to do..

I’m going to listen to my dietcian and EAT everything I’m supposed to and DRINK ensure plus and water. I am going to TELL the doctor they need to hide my weigh better because I will figure it out.

But most importantly I need to listen to my loved ones. I have so much encouragement and support. I am apart of one of the most supportive ED recovery communities and I need to not be scared to reach out. 

Right now, the scale controls me. However, this can’t last and I know it can’t. I have come SO FREAKING FAR in recovery. I will never trigger others by sharing my behaviors, but younger Liv was a dead girl walking. That stage didn’t last. I stopped those behaviors (and some of them I have no desire to start ever again.) so I know this will get easier. The first month will be hard. It’s like an alcoholic not taking a drink. A smoker not taking a smoking break. That’s what my addiction with weighing myself is like. 

So my readers,

My name is Liv and as of right now, I am 8 hours scale free. 

It’s not much but everyone has to start somewhere

The Scale Jar

Me and my scale are having a tough time breaking up. SO i had an idea. What better way to motivate myself than with money? 

Being a college student on a budget, any extra cash I have is nice to spend on an occasional chai latte or some random thing I don’t need but at the time feel like I MUST have. This is when the scale jar idea came to mind.

I weigh myself at least 3x a day still. This hinders my recovery because I am still OBSESSING over my numbers. So from now on, if I want to weigh myself, I have to pay.

Each time I weigh myself I am charged 50 cents. If I weigh myself more than once in a day, each time I step on the scale the fine increases a quarter. 

It does not seem like a lot initially but considering I weigh myself 3x a day everyday, it could add up quick.

So obviously I am not going to want to be wasting my money on weighing myself. That’s foolish. There’s so many better ways to use my spare change.

The only problem with this is accountability. Will I stay true to the jar? Will Ana be stronger? This will be a test on trust within myself. I feel confident that I will remain honest and stay true to the scale jar.

Any money collected in the scale jar will be saved up and donated to NEDA (along with more since I am really hoping to not accumulate much money from laying to weigh in.) 

So friends, let’s see if this helps. I sure hope it will be the motivation I need! I’ll post about it again in a few weeks to check in on how my progress with the scale is going.

Oh and here is a picture of the jar. Keep in mind crafting is NOT my thing 

Weight Restoration

Being weight restored is a good thing. It is a sign of progress and healing. It is a sign that my body is being fed and I am getting healthy again. Weight restoration is a great thing…but to me, it still feels like one of the worst things ever.

A couple days ago I finally hit the number that I am supposed to be at. I have not seen this number range in about 6 months; so seeing myself back in this range definitely hit me a little too hard.

My first instinct was that everything I did was wrong. That eating what I have been eating is bad for me. I kept telling myself I need to eat less now. I need to work out more. I CANNOT let myself gain more weight.

But then I started to realize that if I keep eating normally I will not continuously gain weight. I am getting to the point where I can maintain a healthy weight, which is good. Heck, its great.

However, dealing with the new number range and being weight restored is still a tough mental battle. I need to let myself know that just because my weight is healthy that it does not make me a failure. It makes me a fighter. It makes me a survivor. I am destroying Ana bite by bite.

When these bad thoughts and ED behaviors come to mind, its when I really need to practice what I learned during inpatient, therapy, treatments, groups, ect. I notice myself getting mean sometimes to people around me. I do not mean to say or act the way I do. It feels like it is Ana inside me trying to pull out any string to fight.

Yesterday Ana tried to convince me to not eat when I got upset over something. However, I realized the only person who is affected by this is ME!!! Hurting myself more does not fix anything! Nor does hurting other people. So while I am going through this rough stage of being weight restored I am going to focus on the things I love.

I am going to spend more time free writing, running, and being with kids. I will enjoy  walking my dog, listening to music, working on my mindfulness wall. I have these healthy ways to combat the negativity and this is what I need to be doing. Feel free to ask me to spend time with you to do any of this stuff. I may not want to talk much, but I will always enjoy the company.

I have gained weight, but that is not what I need to focus on. I need to focus on the other things I have gained. I have gained life back, friendships, and happiness. I have gained hope and energy.I have gained the strength to liv[e].