As I recently changed the lay-out of my blog, I re-read some of my old WAMM series (WAMM meaning; What anorexia made me. The ‘WIAN’ in this case is both a reference to those
STUPID eats posts ánd means ‘what I am not’). Anyway, while reading I realized how helpful it had been to me to write out what the difference was between the sick me, and the not sick me. And as I pondered on the subject, I realized I still had a WAMM-post in my drafts. Which is this one. I have a list (oh me and my lists) saved as well with another few bullet points of WAMM-subjects, so I suppose you willl be seeing a few more of these in the future.
WAMM, (WIAN) Part VI; Uninterested (&irresponsible)
I like to think of myself as a… Friendly girl. A good friend. A listening ear. A shoulder to cry on. A reliable buddy. A sincere person. I know, that’s a lot to say about myself, but, I think (most of the time) this is a big part of who I am.
I am a people person. I hate the phrase but I think it’s true. I can be a hermit at times, I admit. But deep down, I cannot live without other people in my life.
I love my friends and family. I love spending time with them. My angels (my 2 little cousins) are so precious to me, my mother I love to death and my friends… Well. Apart from all the times I’d rather ‘glue them behind the wallpaper’ (Dutch expression), I love them dearly. And the rest of my family too!
I work with mentally challenged people, and have done so since I was 16. On the side, I have always had babysitting jobs and nanny-ing stuffs. My first job was as an au-pair in France, where I had my two kids 24/7 for 2 months straight. I did it again the year after in the same family and had another job as a nanny in Malaysia for 3 months when I was 20. I love kids, I love taking care of them and I love that it allows me to reassure my ‘inner mom’. Even in my group of friends I’ve had the nickname Mammasooz since we were 12…
And mamma’s care. That’s what mamma’s do. They are interested in their family. But they take care of themselves too. They are responsible adults.
Yet, my eating disorder made me no longer care. It turned me into a person who just didn’t give a fuck. I would rather stay at home and not-eat, watch food and not touch it, and ‘sit out the hunger pangs’ on the cold kitchen floor then to go see my friends. I would hide in the office room if my cousins came by, so I could avoid having tea and biscuits with them. And later, I would excuse myself and run upstairs with 5 packs of biscuits, a loaf of bread and a tub of ice-cream if my parents had friends or family over, just so I could binge in solace instead of having to sit and pretend to listen to them, while all I could really think of was when they would leave so I could have that binge I so badly needed.
My eating disorder also made me irresponsible in my behavior and actions. Especially when the binge-monster took over. I would sneak out with food, even if I had food cooking on the stove. I would run upstairs to either go and hide my food or just binge on it, instead of making sure the gas was off. I would stuff my face before I would let my dog in who was barking at the door because it started raining outside. I even ran on my dad’s freshly painted stairs once because I ‘had to hide the food’ before the rest of the family came home, and in that rush and panic had completely forgotten about the paint. My worst, however, was when I had my face in a cupboard at my cousin’s place when I was babysitting my angels and I had to ‘snap myself out of it’ when the little one started crying upstairs. My first thought had been; Just let her cry, it’ll pass, I’ll go check when the binge is over. And when it hit me what I had just thought my heart started racing. How could that thought had popped up in mý head?! But it took me another few moments to actively snap myself out of it before I could ‘leave’ my binge to check up on my little one. Oh my, how guilty I have felt about this for so long… And still do.
The fact that my eating disorder turned me into a scared little mouse didn’t help my social me, either. Even if I wasn’t too pre-occupied with food to simply even care to text my friends back, I had become too scared to leave the house anyway. My inner mammasooz was dead. It was solo-Sooz now, and most of the time, that didn’t even bother me. Not that I didn’t want to reconnect with them, I just wasn’t willing or able to put them first. I didn’t even register it as ‘un-Sooz’-like. My mind was too busy with food related thoughts to even realize there were people out there that cared (or used to care) and who I (used to) care about, too. I had completely lost touch with reality, and even more disturbingly; with my emotions. I lost touch with me.
Even when people expressed their concerns, I laughed it off. I was fiiiiiine, hey, watchatalkingabout! And even when my breakingpoint was there, and I realized that, shiiiit, something needed to change, I still couldn’t share this with others. Because I had let myself drift so far away from them, I couldn’t find the courage to build a bridge back to them and ask them to take me back.
I think the first moment of re-opening up (it’s a word), was when my best friend had sent an email to my mum about how concerned he was, and that if there was anything in the world he could do, she should let him know. That he had talked to his own mom about it for nights and nights and they felt so helpless, and that the least he thought he could do was send my mom an email and tell her that she was always welcome at their place whenever she wanted. After I decided I was gonna go and try to get better, my mom showed me the email. The day after I admitted and discharged myself from the ER I spontaneously jumped in the car and drove to his place. I only had ten minutes (my mom needed the car back) but I just wanted to give him a hug and tell him I was ‘on it’, you know, the whole trying to change for the better thing. His mom answered the door and told me my friend wasn’t home. So instead, I hugged her and told her everything was gonna be alright, and to tell my friend that too. That I was working on it. And that I loved them and thanked them for everything. And we cried and I went back home. I think that was the first time I let myself feel again, and actually show it too.
Well, safe to say that ever since that moment I’ve been the same old emotional wreck I used to be! Hormones are funny things. Now I have my mommasooz qualities back, but in a more adult-type of way now. It’s no longer ‘everyone before me’, I can balance things out better now. It’s a lot harder to realize you need to take care of yourself too, instead of always and only of others. But I am to say that I am, once again, the girl to cry with, to talk to and to turn to. And I love the fact that I have managed to be given that position again. It is who I am, and who I want to be; the approachable part of the whole. I care again. And I am cared for, again. And I love it.