It’s been awhile since I’ve written. Okay, not true. All I do is write. It’s been awhile since I’ve written for myself. I have four jobs at the moment. Two of them involve a lot of writing. I’m living the life I thought I wanted, working in the fields I thought I was qualified for. I took on projects I never thought anyone would give me the opportunity to work on. I’m helping people live their lives better and healthier than before. And here I am, not practicing what I preach. Not by any means. I feel inadequate. I feel like a hypocrite. I feel unworthy of the work I do.
Let’s rewind to a month ago; I picked up a new administrative position with my gym, which I feel lucky to be doing. I’m working on social media and the healthy eating program, generally just being an assistant to my amazing trainer who runs and operates something fantastic. She needs a bit of assistance. myPaleoPal launched a challenge program spur-of-the-moment and my work increased tenfold. I started filming video, cooking a meal plan that I worked up, and coaching a group. I’m writing daily. I’m filming weekly. I’m doing a damn good job considering the pressure, the lack of experience, the deadlines, the never-ending list of things today. As a result, I’m consumed by food. Now, this would be great, if the consumption wasn’t what was also eating me alive.
Some part of me thought that by turning food and health into my career, I could combat the eating disorder I’ve been burdened with for ten years. It works, and then it doesn’t. All of a sudden, I’m up in the middle of the night every single night. I’m eating and I’m standing over a toilet. I’m waking up with a face I can’t bear to look at, swollen, freckled with broken capillaries. And the desire to live, to breathe, to do anything besides sleep is replaced by the feeling of something pressing down hard on my chest. I can hardly breathe. And I cry like I’ve never cried before. I am cracking under pressure daily. I am medicating with food daily. I try to take time off to go do something, but I’m consumed by guilt and anxiety when I’m not working. To anyone who was watching me go about my day, this would all go by unnoticed. You can’t work for four people as the girl who is writing this sad description of life about herself; before I am that girl, I am an employee, a friend, a daughter, a coach, a companion to a big, fuzzy dog a lot of days. But during those fleeting moments in between, I catch a disturbing glimpse of what’s become of me. I am not a bad person. I don’t do a bad job. I just have some issues.
I’ve put forth the mightiest effort into recovery. Into a relationship with food that doesn’t rule my world. Into never throwing up again. Into loving my body, and treating it with some fucking respect. And I’m failing. Not just here and there, every single day – I fall.
I don’t know how to manage the stress of my everyday life right now. And I know that’s okay. I’m doing a good job. I know I am – at least there’s that. I am an example, but not in the way that I’d like to be. I want to live the way I know I can, the way that I tell these other people to live – those who are looking to me for guidance. I understand what comprises a happy, healthy life and I don’t believe that I have many components of that right now.
As much as I try desperately to create balance, I end up sideways. When I am having fun, the sudden, sinking feeling washes over me without warning – you could be doing something else.
I’m sick of tomorrow being a new day. It’s the same day with the same problems. I’m the only one who can change this. The more I delve into the career I feel so lucky to have one day and resentful to have fallen into the next, the more alone I feel. Each day when I’m so desperate, I reach for the phone, and I have no idea who to call. When I’m driving around trying to fight the feeling, telling myself over and over, “You can only do one thing at a time,” I just want someone to be there so I can nestle my throbbing head into their shoulder. I want someone to be there for all the wrong reasons, because I know that I don’t have the time to offer anyone anything besides what I’m already putting out. I want someone to be there for the exact reasons someone’s not there anymore; because nobody can tolerate the unpredictability of my emotions. I have little to no means of comfort. I have a lot of friends, and they are all so supportive and helpful. I can’t even explain my love for those people. They are pulling me through, and they don’t even know it. Still, I am enamored by the word and the feeling of “loneliness,” though I’m not sure that’s what the feeling is. I just want to be soothed. I want something to indulge in that isn’t my work or food. At the same time, I fear there is no love in me to give, that there are no feelings to be had. I fear that those things will never return to me. I fear that my life will never be made worth living.
I don’t want to say this because it makes it so final; I am deeply unhappy. And I don’t know where to begin in moving ahead, moving upwards. The stress of my days causes me to wake up each night. It causes the binges and the purging. The nasty cycle of food fuels the self-hatred, the feelings of worthlessness that bleed into every task of my day. The cycle of stress has become vicious and unrelenting. I am so desperate for a solution. I am willing to put in the work to emerge from this pit unscathed, better than ever. And I will. I just don’t know when.