To read this blog in order start at July right at the top of the blog archive and progress down in order. This is an account of my battle with anorexia and bulimia

Tuesday 19 July 2011

year 7 -1989

Year 7,1989
The year I started high school. It’s quite a scary time because it’s a time of establishing new friendships and a whole time of change with in yourself. I was still hanging around Mim and Julie, but it was not really doing me any good. In fact, if any one felt like a third wheel ever, it was me. Even though we were at the same high school, it felt as though sometimes they did not want to be associated with me. They always knew about things I didn’t know about, or made up jokes about me. One Wednesday I got changed into my sports uniform then went into the library leaving my bag outside, as we had to. I came out to have my lunch but could not find it. I searched my bag to find it stuck in my school shoe. It was one of the many jokes Mim and Julie played on me. Although I felt like the biggest idiot, I pretended that I thought it was funny, just so they would not get the satisfaction they probably wanted. For some reason I was always presumed to be the not so bright one, the naive one who did not know too much. Maybe it was because I was the youngest, and it used to be my nature to be the happy little chatterbox. It was just my way of coming across to people I suppose.
I was never one to open up about anything really. I half think that is where the problem stems from. I bottled up my emotions and kept everything to myself. Quite often I would sit on our back step and just think and think, sometimes I talked to our dog Lady. It was safe to talk to her because she never judged what I said or thought, and funnily enough she never spoke back. If I were ever upset about something I never told anyone. If something bothered me, I never told anyone. If I wanted or needed something it took me forever to ask, and then ages to feel right about asking. I tried my very hardest to never allow anyone to see me cry. It wasn’t that Mim or I were ever shamed to cry, because mum and Mim often showed their feelings. Often I yearned to be able to open up to people but I never knew how too. It was just easier for me to be the “happy-go-lucky” person people knew me as. In some ways I feel people never took me seriously because of the way I was. Mim was the serious one, the one who did all the thinking, the one who always helped mum and even others. I feel her and mum shared a great relationship. Because of this I did feel a bit on the outer. Sometimes non-existent.
I often wonder if the desire to be so skinny is actually a subconscious desire to not exist, but not being actually brave enough to try and commit suicide. In reality anorexia is a slow death. It is not the desire to have a perfect skinny body, because we know that anorexic's body’s are not desirable to look at. It is a look of almost death. An anorexic does not wish to be healthy, or does not wish to look good. We invite illness to come our way because with an illness it means to not have to eat, therefore get thinner and sicker. Anorexia is a torture and suffering to one’s body. But through it there is a visible, unspoken cry for help. A need to be noticed, and cared for. Then it becomes a trap, a way of life, an identity.
Sometime through out this year Mim, Julie and I made a pact to get fit and lose weight. It was one of the many peculiar things us three did together. It was our goal to jog every morning, and also swim laps in the pool. The person who failed to do this was to eat three mars bars in one sitting. Now to be honest, I don’t think we even stuck to this routine very much. Instead, we often pigged out on whole blocks of chocolate, or hot chips with tomato sauce. Although thankfully we were quite energetic and did a lot of walking.
At the end of this year one of mum’s aunts died, which meant mum had to travel to Germany. All of our relatives are from and live in Germany. Mum left for a total of two weeks, and trusted us to be by our selves. This also meant cooking for our selves. I am not sure if it was this time or another, when Mim cooked up some vegetables for us to eat for dinner. We sat down to eat, and after a sufficient amount I felt full and stopped. Mim was a bit taken aback I think, because she literally shoved the brussel sprouts in my mouth and made me chew them up. Within that same time frame, it may have even been the same day, Julie’s mother bought us each a rainbow flavoured paddle pop. This was another time I refused food and I was secretly surprised by her response. She was rather concerned and questioned why I did not want it then said to be careful because I wouldn’t want to waste away. The power if felt when saying no, and the response I got was amazing. I realised it was a way to get people to comment on me.
This was also a time when I had my first encounter with bulimia. At the time I didn’t know such a disease existed. To me it was a matter of getting rid of what could make me fat, and at the same time keep a secret from everyone. It happened when Mim had a friend over one night, and they were out in the back yard talking. I stayed in my room and ate tiny teddies and grapes. Grapes always have the effect of making me feel extremely bloated, so I thought I may as well be rid of them and then I wouldn’t have to worry. It was my secret that only I knew about.
One week after mum arrived home from Germany we all went to Europe together. Food was already becoming a minor issue. At our aunt’s house I weighed myself and I don’t think I liked what I saw, but wasn’t overly concerned. I think mum’s behaviour was both Mim’s and my main concern and annoyance. Mum drank a lot of alcohol there and often appeared on the drunken side. I was ashamed and angry about this and so was Mim. I never considered it to be a problem though. I thought it was just something she was doing while spending time with her sister. For some of the trip we stayed with mum’s sister, and for the other half we stayed with her ex-brother in law.
We travelled to other places around Europe, including Paris, Austria, Berlin and Holland. We stayed in a motel in Holland, which had an indoor pool. The pool was heated so Mim and I made the most of it. One night we were in the room getting into our swimmers, Mim was in the bathroom and I was in the main room. I was getting undressed and suddenly felt a pair of eyes on me. A man was peering through the gap in the curtain watching me change. I screamed and cried out for Mim who came and comforted me. I felt so uncomfortable and stupid.
Berlin had the biggest impact on me. We travelled to the east side of Berlin to try and track down information on our father. He died a few months before I was born. He was also from Germany, but that’s all the information mum had on him. We are still unaware of his family situation to this day. East Berlin looked as though it was still living in the time of war. We visited museums, which depicted how life was during the years when the wall was up and the war was taking place. For many nights after our visit here I had nightmares of being separated from my family by a wall.
Our trip to Germany ended at the end of January.

sharing with pour your heart out on things i can't say, twinkle in the eye for flash blog friday, flog ya blog friday with with some grace, flashback friday blogshare with learning to play and playing to learn


  1. I started year 7 the same year
    There is something heart breaking in your words
    Truly courageous in sharing

  2. Have come over from #fybf and wanted to say hi, and that I really appreciate the window you are opening on life with an eating disorder. I have people very close to me who have had disorders, but I've never felt I could ask them too much about it. Thank you for opening up about this.

  3. Ah, high school. It damages a lot of us, I think.

  4. High school is a difficult time as it is. I can't imagine what it was like adding a complicated layer of having an eating disorder. I hope all this blogging is cathartic for you. Keep writing.

  5. Such a hard road to walk and you are courageous sharing your story. It will make someone else's journey less isolating.