Dating The Grim Reaper Is Not What I Had In Mind
So if you would have told me six years ago, that I would be putting on a ‘Black Swan’ inspired outfit and stoking myself up for a Lady Gaga Concert, I would have told you that you were off the map crazy! Yet, here I am lacing up some black shiny over the thigh boots and getting ready to go Monster it up!
So if you would have told me six years ago, that I would be putting on a “Black Swan” inspired outfit and stoking myself up for a Lady Gaga Concert, I would have told you that you were off the map crazy!!
Yet, here I am lacing up some black shiny over the thigh boots and getting ready to go Monster it up!
I think that being able to go see someone like Lady Gaga means a lot of things to me. First of all it is a chance for me to take so much of my life that I lost to my eating disorder back. I take myself back to a few years ago, where the only big event in my horizon was the possibility of an almost guaranteed funeral. It sounds morbid, but it’s the truth. I was closer to my own grave then anything else. I remember my mother coming in to my apartment and making me fill out a will, because she was for sure I wouldn’t make it another day.
I remember I would do my hair and my makeup each night, because I was for sure I would not wake up the next day, and wanted to make sure I looked ok when the coroner found me.
It’s chilling sometimes to take myself back to that moment, that moment when one feels like they have reached the end of their life. I can only imagine what it feels like to have a terminal illness, to know that a short period of time there will be no more you. That you have no idea if today is your last day…and to know that even if it isn’t, it’s just a matter of time before it actually is. I know that there are stages that a human being has to go through… those horrible stages… of Shock…. Disbelief… Denial… and then Acceptance. The thing is….I was stuck on Denial…and never ever reached a stage of Acceptance.
I remember one night as I was my sickest, my Step-Father was driving me home on Christmas Night. It was he and I alone in the car, and I was physically at probably my worst state of my Anorexia. I hadn’t been feeling well all day, but considering the circumstances, that was pretty typical for me. We were just about home, when I remember opening my mouth to say something, however instead of the words coming out, my face completely went numb on one side of my face. I felt completely paralyzed from the neck up, and all I can remember is one thought going through my mind… “this is it…it’s finally happened…I am going to die”….then I blacked out.
That’s the last thing I remember…until I came to an hour later in the back of an ambulance. I had actually stopped breathing for a bit, and my Step-father had to do mouth to mouth resuscitation on me at the side of the road. Later it was determined that I had had a partial stroke, a result of severe mal-nutrition and lack of Oxygen to my brain.
I walked out of the hospital the next day, but not with a “wow that scary… I better get my act together” kind of attitude, but more of with a “see nothing can touch me… I am fine” kind of attitude.
Crazy I know, but let’s fast forward to a year later… I was alone, and had taken a lot of prescription medications something I normally did to make me feel extra numb. I was notorious for “self-medicating” myself… thinking I knew a lot more then any doctor. As usual it kicked me in the ass, because I had a severe reaction.
My heart started to beat a million times a minute… like I could see it pounding through my chest. I remember this time I was scared to death… like literally I can not describe this feeling to you… kind of like somebody has pushed me out of an airplane and then afterwards informed me that I didn’t have a parachute.
I remember looking around me, an episode of Friends was playing on my TV and I was thinking to myself… this is the last thing I will be watching before I die… I looked down at what I was wearing and I was thinking… “this is the last thing I will have on… before I die”… I remember thinking of all the people I loved in my life and thinking… I didn’t get to see them one last time….before I die…and then I thought about all the things I had not done…traveled to Italy….wrote my book…walked down the aisle….gone on Oprah…Met the Dalai Lama… I mean I know it sounds odd, but all of my dreams seemed to be “circling the drain” at the moment… and I felt out of control… helpless… and then for a brief moment really, really selfish and stupid. Ya… totally thought…”OMG…all that fight…all that stubbornness…all that not listening… or accepting the help I was so often given…all those hospitalizations…all those treatments. And then I thought of all the effort I had given to starving myself… binging and purging… and doing nothing less then dying (which was about to happen) for a simple number on that bathroom scale… it would soon be all in Vain.
I kept thinking… I did this to myself…I am the one who basically been holding a gun to my head for 17 years in the form of my Eating Disorder. It wasn’t like I didn’t have a choice… I did… and now I was about to pull the trigger on what could have and should have been prevented.
I thought… you know what…this sucks… I don’t want to die… OH GOD please don’t let me… anybody… I am sorry… I take it back… I want help now… I am ready!! This was all for nothing… all for absolutely “friggin” nothing but my own selfish desire to control who I was by the way I looked, and now I am going to die for it…. THIS SUCKS!!!!!
I seriously don’t know what made me pull through that day… probably for the same reason I pulled through some many other times. I had literally gotten used to death coming and sitting down for tea… but this time… this time I was for sure he was going to take me out the door with him when he left.
I will never forget that day, and probably for a good reason. I do think it happened for a reason… and the very next day is when I decided that something had to change… I didn’t know how it was going to change, but it was going to change. I knew I couldn’t fix things overnight, but I knew that I needed to fix something. The next day I called Rader Programs, and although it took me awhile to get there… I began taking the necessary steps towards taking my life back… to making sure that I was never in that kind of situation again. This time was different…this time not only did my head change… but so did my heart.
So here I am about six years later… 36 and livin’ my life. It took some work… but I am happy to say I have gotten to a great point in my life. I am one of the lucky ones… I still have what could have been like so many others who suffer with this disease 6 feet under. I am so blessed and don’t think I don’t know it.
I live my life everyday like it was my first day on this earth… and I try to experience things as if it were my last. There is nothing I consider “off my list of things to do before I die” and I certainly have been able to “scratch off quite a few!” I haven’t been to Italy yet…still haven’t written my book….have yet to have met Oprah” …but I am going to…you just wait!
Tonight though… I get to scratch Dancing my Ass off at a Lady Gaga concert… nothing is gonna stop me from doing that… especially not a dumb Eating Disorder!!