If a deer happened to leap into the road, causing me to swerve off this icy road into a ditch … My thoughts trailed off, like many times before. I am frightened by these thoughts. I know I am loved, so much, how could I possibly be so ungrateful, so selfish?

I used to drive a winding road, daily, to and from work. This particular country road was not frequented by police and cars would often exceed the speed limit to their hearts desire driving right down the middle. I was no exception as it was fairly normal for my SUV to take every turn 20 MPH over, in the left lane of oncoming traffic, gripping the steering wheel like a video game. Putting a seat belt on is routine for me, so choosing to not wear it is a very deliberate choice. Not wearing a seat belt on this daily excursion became a game of chance that I thought I’d win, but as life goes, could never be sure. It gave me a sound, concrete, logical reason for my heart to beat so fast.

I was just hungry. I was just desperately wanting to be liked, to be perfect at work–to fulfill an identity. But I was never sure I was doing a great job and that anxiety has always proved to be overwhelming.

Of course, who can be sure of themselves if they’re starving? So I ate. I ate all the calories and all the words. I swallowed them up and tried not to spit them out. But I couldn’t shake it completely. I kept eating but my brain was still starved. I still felt exactly like I did 15 pounds prior, only now, no one could even possibly know.

Lately, I have been thinking extremely catastrophic thoughts. I think the absolute worst thing that could happen in a situation (usually death) and believe for a small amount of time that it might happen. Usually time proves me wrong (ie. Safely arriving at the airport, or family members not dying from inebriation the night before.) The problem, though, is that I become so worked up that sometimes I spend days feeling miserable afterword. Migraines. Racing heart. Foggy head. I can’t think clearly and imagine everyone else can see my state of internal terror and well, that leads to panic.

In the past, I could more quickly overcome these intense feelings of anxiety and depression by tricking myself to think I’d be happy once I lost weight.

Now, it’s more to the tune of:

Just stop eating.
No. Bad idea.
You have to. Step on the scale, you’re so fat.
I know… But it’s not going to help…
Yes it will! You’ll feel so much better!
shut the fuck up!

So I’ve resorted to telling myself to STFU, which seems partly counterproductive because it’s not exactly being kind to myself.

Classy, I know. I’m angry with how many times I’ve let those thoughts win and so tired of fighting them. But the places I take myself scare me so much, sometimes it seems like the best alternative.

All that to say; I’m actually doing pretty well. Even though the above is fairly frightening, I think it’s actually progress. Because, what do you know, I HAVE FEELINGS. I just think maybe sometimes they are a little bit more intense than average. Or maybe a lot. Or maybe this is normal and I wouldn’t know because I’ve been doing this since I was 13. The point here is progress in some form and I feel good about that. Really good.

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