Anorexia sent me to Walmart seven days ago to buy a scale.
We needed a few other things, and $6.99 seemed a small price to pay to settle feeling rejected. I couldn’t even hear myself. Anorexia had a mission, and she completed it. This is the cheapest, most difficult to read, and probably most inaccurate, scale I’ve ever owned. It isn’t digital, so it’s not nearly as satisfying as seeing a digital number change by the ounce. Instead, the needle between the lines is hard to distinguish and it’s actually pretty pointless except maybe for differences of 5 pounds or more. Nevertheless, it works just enough to settle something inside me and is hidden in my closet under the coziest slippers and further guarded by old running shoes. Isn’t that the case: hidden by comfort and punishment.
Wednesday was the worst of the rejection-filled days but Thursday didn’t fare much better. By Friday night, though, things began to turn around. The only problem is during the previous 4 days, I let Anorexia hold my hand, instead of reaching out. I didn’t think reaching out would help. Actually, I was afraid to continue to be rejected. I was afraid to even give anyone else the opportunity to help me out because I didn’t want to collect any more evidence that I am not worthy of others’ love, time, connection, etc. Instead, I accepted the evidence I had gathered and drowned it out with numbers on the scale.
So even though I no longer feel such intense rejection, I am left with the entrenched habits Anorexia thrives on and I cannot let them go yet. I think this is because I rediscovered a (while maladaptive) place of safety and don’t have much of a chance for other places of safety this week.
Recovery-me is so tired. The logistics of childcare just got significantly more difficult for me and I’m starting to wonder if it’s all a sign to give up. That maybe I need my eating disorder for survival more than recovery, even if the end result is becoming one with the earth sooner than expected. Maybe that’s just God’s plan for me.
My baby step in recovery today is admitting the scale purchase, the safety I’m not willing to give up yet in it, and the fear I’ve let consume me that reaching out will only provide disappointment. I certainly did not plan on admitting this today or any day soon. I’m a bit scared to hit “publish.” Doing so will begin the process of taking down the grip Anorexia has on me right now. I honestly don’t want to let go, at this moment. But future me does. And the little girl in me does.