Yo Ho, haul together,
Hoist the colours high,
Heave Ho, Thieves and Beggars,
Never shall we die!
I’m bidding on a new mineral.
There’s more that meets the eye about eating disorders. There’s so much that you don’t see: (TW).
This series of photos is from my most recent inpatient treatment admission for anorexia nervosa. The admission that, after just 6 weeks, I discharged myself from - against medical advice.
I was on observations because my physical health was at risk. I was woken up at 6am by nurses who informed me that an ambulance was on it’s way to take me to the general hospital.
Long term starvation and muscle wasting meant that my heart rate had fallen to 33 beats per minute and could literally stop at any second - because the heart is a muscle and like the rest of the body - it withers away like a dying rose.
My eating disorder has taken me to, what would be considered as, dangerous physical places. Yet, by the same token - my eating disorder has clouded my judgement so extensively that that supposed “danger” doesn’t resonate with me. It is the inability to recognise that danger, which, in turn, makes it all the more dangerous.
On that morning - I didn’t care and I wasn’t scared. Today, right now -
I don’t care and I’m not scared.
It is that very same lack of caring that led me to discharge myself against medical advice. I left inpatient treatment having not restored any weight and to this day, I remain “critically anorexic.”
Eating disorders are not simply about how much someone weighs. Eating disorders are not “phases” that one can simply cease engaging in, like a lamp that you can turn on and off in nanoseconds. Eating disorders are not a lifestyle choice. Eating disorders are not diets. You cannot tell whether someone has an eating disorder simply by looking at them. Not all eating disorders are anorexia. Not all eating disorders fit into a neat little diagnostic box. Eating disorders can manifest themselves in many different ways. No two eating disorders are the same.
Eating disorders are mental illnesses. And I’d really like to emphasise the word “mental” here. My eating disorder has not only impacted my physical health - but it has also impacted everything else. I have no self worth. I have hurt my family and friends. I have shut myself off from the majority of said family and friends. I have no future prospects, no hope.
Eating disorders are a state of mind. They cloud your judgement to such an extent that you’re literally gambling with your life. And what’s worse - you don’t see it and you don’t care about yourself.
Eating disorders are tragic. And so, if you ever question whether you have one or not - please get help ASAP. The chances of making a full recovery are significantly higher, the earlier it is caught. Oh, and just for the record - recovery isn’t as simple as weight gain either. Because as we’ve already established, weight loss/low body weight is a symptom of the real cause - which is mental.
The longer you leave it, the more tangled you become until eventually - you’re stripped of absolutely everything: Your family. Your friends. Your social life. Your happiness. Your enjoyment. Your freedom. Your happiness. Your sanity. Then ultimately: your life.
And do you know what? Contrary to what you might think and believe about yourself - you really do deserve so much more.
Aw Lucy I love you so much, you’re so so beautiful inside and out :(