Most of my adult life I’ve had an intimate love affair with anorexia, cheating occasionally with bulimia…but always returning to my one true love Ana. Later I had a secret liaison with chew & spit, but gave them all up for my healthy bond with recovery.
However there is one alliance I have yet to reveal… and I call it picking!
Picking in a nutshell – purchasing a 6pack of raisin bran muffins, picking out all the raisins eating them, and disposing of the rest. Buying 6 pack of pecan tarts, picking all the pecans off,eating them and yup you got it throwing away the rest. I have been known to buy an entire loaf of raisin bread … and well you know the deal.
Does it make any sense? Do eating disorders make sense? Does a lot of stuff I’ve done throughout my eating disorder and recovery make sense … NO!
I often engaged in this behaviour when I was stressed out, depressed, lonely, feeling out of control! It was comforting, like in the past with anorexia or chew and spit!! In some warped way I felt I was indulging yet not binging and remained in the low end of the caloric scale.
I was sort of telling anorexia FUCK U, I can control myself and not eat the 6 whole muffins but I still get a treat! I was totally cutting off my relationship with bulimia; if I didn’t eat the whole muffins then I didn’t have to throw up, problem solved. Picking replaced the entire chaos of my relationship with chew & spit, and the secretive shame and humiliation that came with it.
Like anorexia, binging, bulimia, chew and spit there was a sense of numbness that came with picking, a temporary escape, fleeing from reality, my life, my feelings…followed by dreadful shame.
“WHAT THE HELL am I doing?” This is beyond normal!!! What is wrong with me? (I have been here many times).
Mortified from the waste of food & money! Shame that outwardly I acted as if I had kicked my eating disorder in the butt, yet behind closed doors still participating in this absolutely ridiculous ritual.
I can’t even begin to explain the reasoning behind this or how I came to find myself entrenched in this behaviour.
When I started, it was a daily occurrence, some days more then daily. Fortunately over time it began to become every two days, every week, twice a month, and then very sporadically.
I guess like anorexia, bulimia, chew & spit etc, as I got healthier body and mind, my distorted food relationships ran their course…& sadly I have to announce that picking and I broke up & have gone our separate ways!
The evolution of recovery… MY RECOVERY!
Sometimes when I’m indulging in a raison bran muffin, I catch myself reminiscing about our bizarre love affair. But as I finish the ENTIRE muffin raisins and all, I am so thankful that I ended that unhealthy chaotic relationship.