I had once been vibrant, loud, outgoing, and dramatic. I had a love for people, animals, activities, and sports. Hyper was one word that many people would have used to describe me. Unfortunately, as a result of a predisposition and genetics, and the stressful environment I was in, the obsessive compulsive disorder trait became uncovered and exposed. Consequently, it manifested into an eating disorder, ultimately resulting in depression.
In 2003, there were several major events across the world and country that sparked various emotions out of millions of people. For example, in 2003, the United States planned for an invasion of Iraq due to an imminent threat from weapons of mass destruction. Seen all over the weather channel and across national news, it was reported that a major severe weather outbreak spawned more tornadoes than any week in U.S. History. Also, hurricane Isabel was the costliest, deadliest, and strongest hurricane in 2003. In the car industry, Toyota overtook Chrysler to get the number three slot in U.S. car sales. In sports, the Florida Marlins amazed many as they won the World Series by defeating the New York Yankees. And, in technology, Apple launched iTunes, which became a major success selling 10 million songs within 4 months of launch. Finally, Universal Pictures produced a short, entertaining, colorful comedy, Dr. Seuss’ Cat in the Hat.
Despite major events encompassing history, technology, weather, entertainment, and pop culture, I became incapable of expressing my feelings verbally and non-verbally. When talking about issues that would normally be expected to engage emotions, I felt numb. In instances where I should have displayed animation, I appeared flat without emotional expression.
I remember vividly, my roommate came into my room one night and invited me to go see the new movie, Dr. Seuss’ Cat in the Hat, with her and another friend. Attempting to prove my normalcy at the time, I accepted her invitation and joined them. The 82-minute long movie seemed as if it lasted 4 hours. I was immediately reminded of how sick I had become when I inhaled the smell of popcorn in the theater and salivated over the candy boxes everywhere. I was not allowed to eat popcorn, candy, or any other treats sold in a movie theater. I thought about ordering a pop, but what if the guy accidentally pressed the regular coke button instead of the diet coke button? So my obsessive thoughts about food, snacks, and treats became magnified once again, and the distraction became too extreme to even concentrate on the movie. My reputation throughout my life was contrary to the way I had become during this period of time.
I was malnourished and severely underweight. My food and weight obsessions completely interfered with my ability to work, socialize, study, and enjoy life. The only thoughts I was capable of having involved food, my scale, meals, my body, and how I was going to continue losing weight. I recognized the irony of it all — despite constantly deliberating over food, I was starving myself at the same time. I was unhappy, anxious, empty, guilty, and sad. Though I was able to feel depressive symptoms, I still struggled to display any type of emotions, and constantly appeared apathetic. I had gone too far. And I needed help.