It’s hard to ask for help, especially when I felt like such a failure for having relapsed with my eating disorder. When I see so many people doing so, so well, I remember being at that place almost. I could almost touch their level or platform of how high they stood in their recovery. I almost didn’t feel worthy being around them.
When my slipping finally turned into a slide, it took me a while to be honest. Part of me felt lIke I needed it. Part of me acted like it was okay. The other part of me didn’t want to ask for help because I had become so addicted, once again, to the eating disorder behavior. Then, the piece of me that has been pushed down inside and silenced was begging to be heard, but I couldn’t listen to her.
Perhaps a large piece of this was denial. I never fully understood my own denial. I liked having my eating disorder be my secret again; but we are only as sick as our secrets, right? Right. I spent Saturday with a friend from AA. I was being honest that I was “struggling” with the disorder, but after I kept talking, I should have inserted my foot into my mouth, for I was not aware at how rapidly unsettling and worrying the behavior had gotten. It became this; “no big deal” and then finally became a big, big deal.
That part is hard. I think the part that kept me from reaching out when I was getting worse and even more worse was the feeling of failure within myself. This was a new sense of failure I had. Of course, I had relapses before, and felt disappointed, but the arms of my eating disorder swooped me up and I didn’t feel as much remorse. But this time, I felt more than remorse. I felt like I had failed my closest friends and especially, my therapist, who probably believes in me more than anyone I know.
The friends that I had sort of were doing this “intervention” but not as a group. They were talking about my status out of concern behind my back, and I started receiving texts and phone calls. Today, i had therapy and found myself angry and embarrassed. How do I get out of this hole? Back to basics.
New accountability, frequent doctor visits, group, meetings, check-ins daily, throughout the day with accountability supports and my therapist. Re-feeding, once again. I think the worst part of this, in addition to feeling like a failure, is finding the way to fight back. And, I am and I will. I just have a lot of fear right now, doubts, and honestly, I am sad and I am surprised that I can name that.
So I guess I need to not only throw the red cloak into the face of the wolf… but I also need to stare the wolf down, make the wolf cower and back away, going back into the cave.
I’ve come to relate to my own spin on the story of the girl, the red cloak and the wolf… for I am all three.