I Have an Eating Disorder…Now What?

Excerpt from Book:

I grabbed a box of Special K cereal, a gallon of skim milk, and a bag of carrots from the fridge I shared with my three roommates. I proceeded to go into my room and lock the door. I began my ritual of eating the carrots first as I turned the tv on to muffle the sounds in my room soon to come. For those of you that don’t know, it’s much easier to start a binge with carrots. It creates a barrier to know when you have thrown everything up. They sink to the bottom of your stomach. Typically, you do this when you are eating really unhealthy, unsafe food. Looking back, the fact that I ate carrots when I was going to binge on a “safe” food, fat free cereal, shows how damaged and broken I was in that moment.

I started my toxic ritual of binging on the cereal and milk until I could barely breathe. I ran to the bathroom and threw up until I saw the carrots in the toilet. I went back for round 2, round 3, and round 4. Once the box of cereal and milk was gone, I sat down on my bed and thought WHAT AM I DOING? I am wasting away my life binging and purging while all my friends were having a great time at my pool in my apartment complex.

I don’t know what was different about this moment. I still try to meditate on what my reasoning was. This was just a typical day for me. I was just sick of it. I was sick of all of it…obsessing about weight, weighing myself 10 times a day, constantly thinking about the food I ate or the food I wasn’t allowed to eat, how fat and disgusting I was, avoiding my friendships, avoiding life…the list goes on. I remember thinking if this is what life is, then I would rather die. I couldn’t live this way anymore. I was a prisoner in my own flesh and I, subconsciously, knew if I spent one more year in this cycle I would die.

I got onto my computer and started researching eating disorders and treatment facilities. I emailed my parents about what eating disorders are, what treatment facilities to look at, and that their daughter had one. My journey of recovery started that summer – into in-patient treatment I went.

Life is filled with multiple crossroads. It’s easier to identify them in hindsight. This was a big crossroad for me. I was a freshman in college and I was about to accept an internship in NYC with a world renown fashion designer. I was going to live, eat, breath fashion with models and designers for my entire summer. However, that day with that bowl of cereal changed everything. I picked treatment.  If I didn’t go to treatment that summer, I know I wouldn’t exist today.