It’s just past lunchtime, and I’m still sitting around in my PJ’s and oversized dressing gown, with Milo staining the creases of my mouth, evidence that I’ve ignored all the motivational signs I’ve put up around my room to prevent me from doing the very same.
“What’s more important, the chocolate or fitting back into your clothes?” one says. “Your face is getting fat like a moonface. Lose 20kg!” says another. “For Fuck’s Sake, Stop Eating! Do not become WHOAH MAMA fat again!” pleads the final poster, begging me to ignore the desire I have to eat my feelings covered in classic dairy milk goodness. “Whoah Mama fat” was what my best friend told me I had become after I gained weight on antipsychotics last year. I hear his voice every time I look in the mirror. I can’t imagine ever telling someone that myself, but apparently he’s not one for dressing up the truth, as ugly as it may be.
I try to prescribe to Body Positive ideals, making attempts to love my reflection no matter what I see looking back at me. I know I won’t be able to hate my body into submission, but it’s difficult to ignore the inner critic that’s been with me my entire life. It’s voice is obnoxiously loud and drowns out any words of acceptance that might come to mind when faced with image in the mirror. Lately, all I see is a large fat women of below average attraction with a case of hormonal acne I can’t seem to fix. There have been times in the past, where I actually liked what I saw in my reflection, but these days I cringe with shame and anger that I’ve let myself get so out of control. All I can see are my glaring faults.
I’m on two antipsychotics both with the capacity for making one ravenous with hunger, and the potential to gain weight. Combined with my fat girl disordered eating urges, it’s a literal recipe for disaster. A few months ago, before I was taking the meds, I lost 25kg which was purely my Risperdal weight I’d gained last year. Since taking the new medications I’ve gained back 10kg of that. Despite all the large written warnings I’ve surrounded myself with, I still find myself throwing a large bag of M&M’s into my shopping and eating them in secret in my bedroom as I stare at the stern warning signs I put up when I was in a better, more compliant, headspace. I find myself feeling guilty and promising myself it will be the last time but inevitably I end up in Safeway chocolate aisle, swearing again it will be the last time I indulge. It’s a vicious cycle of binging then guilt then promises to make amends, binging then guilt and promises to make amends. I don’t want eating to be a constant battle all the time. I know none of it is healthy, the binging or the guilt I feel or the constant apologies I make to myself. Stopping the medication isn’t an option for me because it actually works in helping to keep away some of the more distressing thoughts and obsessions I have. I can’t quit food cold turkey, as delicious as it sounds, it’s just not feasible. I just have to learn to manage the urges I get to binge (and purge). I think I’m going to talk to my Psychologist and Shrink about the issue and see what their opinion is, outside of ‘just stop buying the damn chocolate.’ which I think overly simplifies the matter. I guess I’m going to need to look at the reasons why I eat. Why it makes me feel good. What other coping mechanisms I can use instead. In the meantime, I’m just going to avoid the chocolate aisle all together until I’m one of those types who can eat a single row of chocolate, stop and put it back in the pantry like it’s no big deal. I’m trying to make myself more accountable by posting this, so wish me luck. I’m going to need it.