To me, the strongest battle I fought during my time with an eating disorder was “The Voice.” The voice should have been given a legal name, as it truly became a person I heard and listened to every second of my life. The voice dictated my decisions, swayed me not to eat, and convinced me to keep losing weight. At times, I believed this was the only relationship I had in my existence.
The voice kept reassuring me I would be a happier individual if I continued seeing the numbers go down on the scale. Therefore, every time I walked into the entrance to my apartment complex, up one flight of stairs, I was already being told to go straight to the closet that stored and protected my beloved scale. That when I saw the results of not eating, I would then be happy.
This voice consumed my days and my life. Really, it was the only sounds I even heard sometimes. I remember thinking that if I went to class, maybe I would be able to focus on the professor who was lecturing. But, no, the sound of the voice overpowered every professor.
The voice kept telling me how horrible food was for me and my body. That food was my enemy, to the point where I became beyond scared of anything that was edible. The voice, no matter what food was in sight, would tell me it will make me fat, and not to touch it. Because if I even touch it, I may be tempted to take a bite. And when I tried to fight back, the voice convincingly explained how sick it would make me feel after ingesting it. Obviously, I wouldn’t want to feel sick, so I would avoid it.
The voice told me how good I looked in clothes. I remember getting ready to go out one night early on in the disorder. While waiting for my roommate to finish blow drying her hair, I went and grabbed my outfit. I put on what I considered to be my “skinny jeans” since they were always so hard to get over my behind. Shocked, I easily pulled them up, buttoned them, and they dropped back down a couple inches. How could these jeans, which had been two sizes too small a couple months ago, be falling down me?
I heard the voice say how wonderful it was, how great it must have felt to be so thin and fit, and to keep it up. I didn’t have anything tighter in my closet, so I reluctantly went out in those that night. After that, I decided I would rather not attend any more parties because I didn’t have nice clothes that fit me. Clothes that fit me snuggly that previous summer, all became huge. Between the clothes issue, and not feeling like my typical outgoing self, my social life quickly came to a close.
It was just me and the voice. My roommate was out studying, my friends who I used to hangout with became distant, and I slowly became more and more withdrawn from life.