Day 2: What part of your body is most affected by it?
I think purging affects every cell in my body. It drains me of life and makes me feel so exhausted afterwards. It’s the only time I feel like that- usually I’m active, or doing something constructive. But no, after purging all I want to do is curl up in a ball and sleep.
I did something I shouldn’t today. I looked up eating disorders online and saw the technicalities of them. I saw how people have binge days, or how they binge and purge, sometimes several times a day, often multiple times a week. I can see the attraction of that- of pigging out on your favourite foods yet not gaining a single pound. But no I promised myself that I wouldn’t purge again, that I’d last the 30 days. Restricting however, that looks interesting, monitoring what you eat to make sure you consume less than a specific amount of calories a day. Would that be damaging? Is that considered self-harm? I don’t know. I’ll look it up further, because I think if I ate less yet still remained healthy, then I wouldn’t feel the urge to purge myself anymore.
Mum’s noticed that I’ve been spending a lot of time at home lately, not doing much. She said I should do something productive, like going for a run while the weather’s still decent outside. I think I’ll go for one later this evening, I think I’ve still got some trakkies in my wardrobe somewhere from when I went to the gym a few times earlier this year.
So I decided to go out for a few hours instead of sitting home and moping. I got the bus into the centre of town and tried some photography. I’ve fallen behind with it- usually I’d try and go for a walk every night after college and try to get at least two or three decent shots, but lately I’ve been swamped with homework and haven’t had chance to get out as much.
They say pictures are worth a thousand words, so maybe that’s why I love photography so much. I can’t describe an object, or a person or a place adequately to someone, but I can show them pictures which after all are probably just as good, if not better, isn’t it? I even set up a little photography blog. I’m proud to admit it’s even got quite a few subscribers, which is surprising considering my photos are generally of the boring local landscape and my edits of them aren’t that good, but maybe I’m underestimating myself, I tend to do that a lot I think.
I was sitting at my desk an hour ago, uploading the newest shots to my blog, and sorting them and captioning them all, when I got a private message. I never get messages. I immediately sort of seized up, my heart started beating faster. What if it's a critic? What if they don't like my work? I mean, I’d got negative criticisms before, and a fair amount of praise too, but they’d always been commented on the photos themselves, I’d never gotten a message full of criticism.
But what if it's just another blogger? What if they want to talk? I knew bloggers often chatted to one another, but I’d never had the courage to start a conversation with anyone else before. The thought of staring an interaction with someone I’d never met before filled me with sheer panic. They probably wouldn’t like me, they’d think I was rude or unsociable or a freak like everyone else did. Quite frankly I didn’t know which I thought was worse- negative views of my work which I didn’t think I could deal with well right now, or a friendly blogger. Both filled me with dread. God I’m pathetic.
It turns out it was a local girl. She wasn’t someone with criticisms of my work- no she had only praise for me! She seemed nice, not like the shadowy grey figure of fear I’d imagined being on the other end of the message. Turns out she’d seen me when I was in town earlier and recognised me and had wanted to introduce herself, but had thought better of it. I was glad she hadn’t- I’m finding it slightly easier than I thought it would be to talk to her online, it feels so strange to actually be able to say whole coherent sentences to someone, even if I’m not actually saying them with my voice. Her name’s Cassie, or Cas for short. I introduced myself as Meg, I hate when people use my full name. Even mum and dad call me Maggie, which I still dislike, but I know I’m in trouble when they call me Margaret. It was gran who first called me Meg, and I loved it because it sounded right, and it rolled off the tongue easier and even after she died when I was seven, the name just stuck.
I’ve been talking to Cas for about an hour now. I feel happy for the first time since my first purge. It’s so strange; I feel almost human again. I could get used to this!