Sunday, December 4, 2011

the burning fat.

It would appear that I have a penchant for late night posts. Once again it is almost midnight and I'm posting on here. I've got a huge backlog of work to do and my emotions are in complete turmoil and I've just made the decision not to sleep tonight (which is the best way for me to get to sleep). 

Most of you will know that I am highly skilled when it comes to the art of procrastination and suppressing emotions until they all swirl inside and generate so much pressure that they all burst forth at once. The insult someone threw me a few months ago, the cutting from last week, the scolding for my parents last year, it all comes out in some putrid mess and then I have absolutely am forced to try and clean it up. 

There are a few reasons why tonight is a time for great contemplation for me. One is the comment that fiandshalimer left me. One is the conversation I had with TS a few days ago after Fat Piggy's suicide attempt. One is the cute Australian guy I met in theatre a few days ago. One is the vast pile of work that is burning my candle from one end. And last but not least, one reason is that in 45mins, it will be midnight and then it will be my birthday, one of my most loathed days of the year. 

Being a surgeon, highly methodical, slightly OCD and just anal in general, I shall deal with this the only way I know how, one at a time. So! Firstly, to fiandshalimer:

Your comment really made me think. Probably not in the way that you intended. Let me just say that I know you don't mean any offense, and I do not take any offense. I know that you talk from experience and you are trying to save me from a horrid experience that you've gone through and never want anyone else to experience. I have to say that I think that is a very noble thing to do. 

From reading your blog it's very obvious that ED has ripped your entire life away from you, it must be frustrating for you to read about other people seemingly happily skipping down the road of EDs. I guess I can only relate to that feeling on a much smaller scale but even so, I understand that you want me and other people in similar situations to avoid it at all costs. 

I don't know how to explain myself to you. I guess that I don't have to. In all my honesty in this blog, I've never felt like I owed anybody an explanation, but I do owe myself an explanation because at present, there is a small part of me named 'insight' who is taking the exact same stance as you. I don't know how long you've been following me, or how many of my blog entries you've read but I really REALLY hope you'll believe me when I say that I am certainly not skipping any road to ED happily and that yes, I do know exactly what lies at the end of that road should I ever go that far. 

So let me just say this for you and for all my new followers who might not know this about me; I'm a surgeon, I've worked in general surgery and I've worked in psychiatry in the past. I know what happens. I've had ED patients in both these areas, and I've spent a lot of time mopping up the mental and physical mess that ED begets. I'm not ignorant. I don't think having an ED is glamorous. No part of it is glamorous. The physical effects are nothing short of horrific but at least there are physical things that can be done to attempt to rectify the damage. The mental effects are by far the more crippling. 

If I had any strength or tiny scrap of self worth, I would drag and crawl on streets covered with broken glass straight into recovery and therapy. But life isn't quite that simple. Part of me is very careful about hiding everything because I don't want my colleagues to find out. Part of me feels pretty reckless about this whole matter for the exact same reason. I'm surrounded by doctors, they'll find out and do something before I ever get that sick. Or so I think. 

Work burns my candle from one end and my ED burns it from the other. There are no two ways about that. That's just the way it is. Believe me, if I could stop the ED burn, I would. All my friends are highly successful and are constantly riding the high. I pretend to be riding my high too, and I'd love to be able to actually ride it. I have a rather privileged life. I have great friends, a beautiful dog, a promising career...I'm pretty lucky. I'd love to be able to enjoy it with the rest of my friends. 

I think this ED snuck up on me. The last I remember, it was a choice, it always was. I chose to starve for a bit to lose some weight and then I'd stop and go back to normal and just live life. Slowly, without me noticing, it just took over. Now food occupies my every thought and every meal is an internal battle. I don't know how or when I got this bad. And now I don't have a choice. Every action is automatic, a compulsion. A compulsion that is a response to the obsession that rules my mind. 

Fiandshalimer, I don't know what it is that I want to say to you. I think your sentiments are probably echoed by some of my friends, and it certainly would be echoed by all of them if they knew. I hope that nobody thinks any less of me because of my hypocrisy and incompetence and every other weakness that I've displayed in my blog. I've never claimed to be a good person. I just try to do my best. Let no one say that I wasn't honest! 

I find a strange amount of peace in my ED and all the rest of my mental illnesses. I'm so privileged. I'm privileged enough to be a doctor and a surgeon. I'm privileged to have the professor and TS and J and a bevy of great friends. I'm so privileged. But so undeserving. I don't deserve any of it. Deep down I think I'm a terrible person, the definition of nasty and evil and ugly and disgusting. I tend to overcompensate for this and as a result most people think I'm rather vain. But I'm truly awful and the constant misery brought to me by my mental problems actually works to balance my life out a bit. I feel like I can continue on because I'm suffering like the loathsome worm that I am despite my undeserved luck. 

Maybe one day I will see things the way all recovered/recovering ED patients see it. Maybe one day I will see things the way my friends see it. But until then I don't know how to be what I'm not. Like Newton's first law of motion, I will remain in my state until some outside force acts upon me. 


  1. I'm just going to go ahead and wish you a happy birthday. Even though you sound like me and probably wish that everyone just forgot about it and let you be.

    I'm not sure that I ever want to recover. This is the only place I know and we're all scared of the unknown.

    Rather thought provoking though.


  2. I'm sorry if I did come across as sounding like i thought you didn't know... no i don't think you are skipping happily down this road - it's very clear to me you aren't happy or okay. And that makes me sad. yes, it did steal everything from me, still might, and if only I could go back and change it but I can't... i so relate to it making you feel calm - it was the only way I coped at the time, and still do. i guess i just wish i could rescue people or at least help them somehow.. knowing what they are going through. Hang in there xx