Damnsle Inthis-Dress

poety, rants, and self-loathing self-acceptance...what could be more fun difficult annoying ridiculous outrageous?

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Location: NW OH

Je pense, donc je doute. Je suis. Je pense.

Wednesday, April 21, 2010

Here's what happened...

This started out as a comment on this post over at Shakesville, but ended up being so long I figured I'd just post it here instead:

About 5 years ago I decided to go on a diet. Through a combination of self medicating with food and alcohol (and binging and purging), an almost total lack of self regard, and a naturally fat body anyway, I was around 400 lbs. Of course, I’d also been dieting pretty much all my life. I was either dieting, about to diet or cheating on a diet. But I decided that this time I was going to “Do It Right”. I was going to “Eat Less and Exercise More”. And I was going to lose weight. Because otherwise I was going to drop dead, dead, dead. At any second. So I stopped eating and I exercised obsessively.

Now, when I moved back to OH from FL and needed a GP, I naturally went with the doctor my sister and mom had been going to for years. He is great: never fat shaming and always treats me for whatever I went in for without ever once bringing up my weight. However, I don’t always see him; it is a medical partner group so there are several doctors and a couple nurse practitioners and physicians assistants. For the most part, they are all great people.

But 5 years ago there was one nurse practitioner who, when I told him I hadn’t eaten anything in 4 days other than water with lemon (to keep hydrated and avoid scurvy), told me to keep up the good work, keep drinking the water, and advised me to try enemas, too. He said that fasting and enemas was a great purification method. At this point I had lost over 150 lbs in about 7 or 8 months. Which he knew because it was recorded in my chart. But I was still fat – I had started out at almost 400 lbs – so obviously it wasn’t an eating disorder or anything to be worried about.

That man exacerbated my already fucked up outlook on food, exercise and my own body, which ultimately led to having to have my gall bladder removed. Turns out not eating for long periods of time can cause gall stones.

So now not surprisingly I’m back to my original weight. Because the only way I can lose weight an keep it off is by literally starving myself. And I’m not willing to do that anymore. I’m much healthier now, being a fat fat fatty than I was when I was relatively thin(er). I do need to exercise more, but frankly, I’m afraid to because I know how easily I can turn obsessive. I don’t want to go through that hell again. Even though I was still fat, I’m fairly tall and I carried the weight well. I looked good and everyone was always telling me that, and how proud they were and what a great thing I had accomplished. But I had never had a more miserable time, when self harm and suicidal ideation were a daily thing. And considering I have had major clinical depression for basically my whole life, that’s saying something.

It’s only in the last few years, after finding Shakesville and Kate Harding’s Shapely Prose that I’ve fully realized how very fucked up that whole period of my life was.

Thankfully, that nurse practitioner was fired from the practice several years ago. And the physician’s assistant I’ve been seeing there lately is absolutely wonderful. She is young and thin and never once mentioned my weight when I saw her a couple months ago for a sinus infection. In fact, I was so comfortable with her I let her talk me into scheduling a pap exam, which she said she could do there in the office. I hadn’t had a pap done in probably 10 years or more because I’ve never had a gyno who didn’t fat shame me to the point of tears. So I had a pap last week, and again she never made any mention of my weight and discussed and touched my very fat body very matter-of-factly with me. She also warmed the speculum before inserting it and was exceedingly gentle and quick. I’m very thankful that I met her.