Motivational Fear

Last week I shared an article via Facebook that got some interesting feedback.

A lot of people e-mailed, commented, “liked” and told me how much this particular story helped them stay motivated for recovery.

*If you want to read the actual article, the link is listed below. I will, however, warn you that the content is somewhat scary and should be read with caution.

http://www.psychologytoday.com/blog/brave-girl-eating/201008/shes-not-skinny-is-she

When I say scary, I mean it is REAL, and talks about a young woman dying from her eating disorder, even though she looked and weighed what our charts consider “normal,” or “healthy.”

I won’t get started on the topic of all the issues with the American medical system or insurance, but our society has a bit of a problem, because we believe if someone is not emaciated-ly skinny then they couldn’t possibly have an eating disorder.

I cannot express enough how WRONG this belief is.

In fact, the majority of people I know who have the biggest problems, are not under weight at all.

And often, those are the people who get denied treatment because they do not fit the criteria suggested by medical professionals for admission to recovery facilities.

i.e. insurance won’t cover any of the costs and it is EXPENSIVE.

I was fortunate to have a fabulous provider that covered some of the bills, but they still added up year after year…

So now that you get the basic gist of the Psychology Today piece, you might understand why I didn’t know how to take the comments made by my peers…

“This article helped me stay on track….thank you so much for posting this, it’s exactly what I needed to read today…”

My first reaction was, “are these people crazy, this article is SO sad!…I probably shouldn’t have publicized this…anyone who takes the time to read it is going to think I am SO morbid and lacking all hope!”

But then it dawned on me. The young woman’s story is an eye-opener!

Continuing with the tradition of last week, for me, today is “try something new Tuesday,” and if I am being honest my challenges and progress are nothing close to what they should be considering I have been “getting healthy” for years.

Sure I am putting on a pound of two, here or there, but there is no consistency in my plan.

I see the roll starting to form along my waistline and have an anxiety attack, which translates to, I might still be eating more calorically, but it is through a safer variety of food, or because I can “justify” the larger portions through some extra intensity on the treadmill.

This mind-set and my efforts need to change.

The above documentation proves that even though I cannot see the damage I may have done to myself in the past few years, that doesn’t mean it is not there. And sometimes is the things that are invisible to the eye, that are the most detrimental.

It has always been easy for me to deny, and minimize my problem because I say I have no real evidence…my labs are normal, my vitals check out…but perhaps I need to accept the severity of my past and make way better decisions regardless of how difficult they may be.

No one will care about that pudge around my middle if I am no longer breathing.

Since I am writing this Monday night, I don’t exactly know what my challenge will be for today, but I promise I will give an update asap.

Perhaps that will help give me some accountability…

Are you facing a fear today??

Do you find things like this “motivating” or just too sad?

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6 thoughts on “Motivational Fear

  1. Hi CJ. I read that article when you posted it and it was definitely an eye opener for me. I too feel that although I am considered to be underweight by medical standards, I think I’m fine and healthy. I don’t look emaciated and most people just think I’m skinny, not unhealthy. However, after reading that article I did the math, and in regards to the inability to maintain at least 85% of ideal body weight, I’m definitely more underweight than that. This line really hit home for me: “Because by the time someone has lost 15% of her ideal body weight, she’s very, very ill. If anorexia were staged like cancer, we’d be talking Stage III. Or more.” That’s me. I’m more than 15% under my ideal body weight. So if we were talking cancer I’d be near death. Wow. Very eye opening. I guess I’m not as healthy as I think I am. Or that anyone else thinks I am for that matter.

    • Maybe it is good the article made you realize that! Do you think it will isnpire you to get the help you need to get better? Sometimes I think fear can be the best motivator, even though it is so scary! You can do it girl!!

  2. Wow. I had never really thought about anorexia in this way. I guess that’s true of many disorders. The ones that sometimes look the most “okay” can be the ones struggling the most. Thanks for sharing.

  3. This hit home for me because when I was at my sickest (throwing up ten times a day), and literally dying from my eating disorder, I was also heavier. I didn’t look sick. I was embarrassed to tell anyone I needed help for ED because I knew I didn’t look like I had a problem. I think being heavier made it so that no one ever asked either if there was something wrong with me. As a ballet teacher now, I don’t wait for my students to look like skeletons before I ask them what is wrong. I look for many of the other signs and symptoms that I remember so well from my days of ED.

    • That is so great that you are proactive in the lives of young women! I think EDs are too common of a problem and they are certainly on the rise in a society like ours. I am sorry you had the experience you did, but it really is admirable you are taking that and making the next generation much better!!!

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