I’m not going back into treatment. It’s prohibitively expensive, even with insurance, and the general consensus after a half dozen assessments is that I’m not sick enough for inpatient, but too sick for day treatment. And, of course, my insurance doesn’t cover the residential that I qualify for. So I go back to work on Friday and I’m going to try to make the best of it. My motivation to at least maintain this weight (though I HATE IT) is higher than it has been, given that if I have to leave this job again, it will likely be for good. I love my job, I really do, and I don’t want to let this eating disorder rule my life.
Unfortunately, I wonder if by going back to work and just maintaining if I’m not just setting myself up for a massive relapse later. Going back to work isn’t going to fix my eating disorder, you know? At best, I’ll be able to live with a sub-threshold eating disorder and still be just as obsessed and miserable, but not acting on (as many) symptoms. At worst, I’ll completely fall apart and actually wind up being “sick enough” for inpatient. Of course, if that’s the case, I’ll have to leave my job and be without insurance, so clearly my best option is to get my shizz together and make this work.
In other news, apparently my potassium is low and this is the cause of my constant chest pain recently. It got worse in the past week to the point of my actually considering going to the ER, which I finally did last night. My EKG was “great!” but apparently my body is lacking in potassium, so they shoved a couple of pills down my throat and sent me off with the instruction to call a cardiologist in the event that the pain continues.
The nurses looked at me as if I were some sort of idiot, a 26-year-old coming into the ER with chest pain and difficulty breathing. I told them that yes, I know I’m only 26, but I also have an eating disorder, which often comes with cardiac implications. After I admitted to having an eating disorder, the nurses asked my lowest weight. When I told them, one said, “Oh, that’s not too bad.” After a moment, she said, “Oh, but you’re tall…” Yes, I am tall. Yes, that weight on someone who is 5’2″ or 5’3″ is totally acceptable. Yes, thank you for validating my eating disorder’s constant earwig that tells me that I am not, nor have I ever been, really sick.
The nurse practitioner seemed to have a better handle on eating disorders and he was actually quite kind. He reminded me that, as a person with an eating disorder, I am at a higher risk for cardiac episodes and so A) totally cool that I came into the ER and B) maybe I should lay off the strenuous exercise a little. He also covered all his bases quite thoroughly, asking if I was feeling like I wanted to hurt myself — imagine! Someone who actually bothered to read my chart before walking in the room! (This is the same ER I visited in the spring when I was suicidal.)
It was strange for my labs to actually show something. In all the time I’ve been getting labs and EKGs and bone scans for this stupid eating disorder, everything has always come back perfectly normal. It has been a constant reminder that I’m not actually sick. I mean, even with a lower-than-normal blood potassium, I’m not actually sick — if I were actually sick, my EKG would have been a little screwy. And since I’m not actually sick, it’s totally okay that I’m going back to work.
My head is jumbled and nothing makes sense. Can you tell?
A little poetry for today. I wrote this a couple of months back and, in a departure from my usual style, it actually [sort of] rhymes!
You call me a “bitch,”
not knowing my story,
not knowing the heartache we share.
My actions have reasons,
even though you don’t see them,
So your assumption’s a little unfair.
You call me “hot”
and think it’s a compliment
not knowing that he did the same
With his hands on the body
he had recently violated
So that word holds a great deal of pain.
You call me “fat”
not knowing the years
that I starved as I tried to be thin.
Shaking hands, low pulse,
and months gaining weight
So there’s more than you see to this skin.
You call me these things
and think they’re just words
not knowing the power within.
Sharper than swords
with the power to kill
So think before you speak again.