Over the next several months, I will be sharing excerpts from my memoir that I'm writing, titled Digesting Life. The story of my struggle and recovery from an eating disorder is the basis for what led me to create the KARMA Method, the signature coaching and therapeutic method used by Bespoke Wellness Partners. My hope is that maybe some of these stories will resonate with you or make you more aware of where you are on your specific journey with whatever struggles you may be facing. Last week, I provided tips I’ve learned that can help you to stop feeling overwhelmed.
I wanted to disappear and evaporate from this world. I thought that I was a burden to it, my family, the kibbutz, everyone. I told myself that I was fat and stupid. I stood in front of the mirror and lifted my shirt. All I saw were bones pushing through my skin. It was the strangest thing in the world: I saw bones, but I still felt fat. My face seemed long and thin and when I got closer to the mirror, I noticed some extra facial hair that I hadn’t had before and my nose seemed bigger. Who WAS this person?
I locked the door, took a chair, and placed it in front of the mirror. I took my shirt off and my pants and stood there for a few moments, naked. The mirror was my enemy and I just stood there looking at it.
What have I done to myself? I wondered. Where is me? Happy me? Outgoing me? I was buried inside that body that was reflected in the mirror. I looked down at my belly again and it was also covered with fuzzy hair. I wondered, “What is happening to my body? Am I sick? Maybe I should yell and ask for help.”
My mind was racing and my heart was beating even faster than before. I had to lie down and relax my mind. I felt that my body and my mind were two different people who were totally disconnected. I lay in bed and tried to calm myself down, but I couldn’t. So I took the cigarette that I had taken from my mom during my last trip home and lit it. I pushed my head back and felt a rush of lightness in my head.
Why was this happening to me? What did I do wrong? It was as if God were sending me the clear message that I had nothing to seek in this world anymore. Maybe he is telling me to ask for help?
Over the next few weeks, I isolated myself socially. I truly felt that everybody hated me and wanted me to fail in school and in life. People around me kept telling me that I was too skinny and that I needed to be hospitalized, and it felt as if they had all teamed up against me in a strange way. I was feeling very insecure and immersed in a very competitive environment that emphasizes education. When I looked around me, I saw successful smart people who seemed confident, loved, and happy. I felt so unhappy, and the idea of my continuing to live this way terrified me.
Was I really living? I had learned to sit with my hunger pains and didn't have much of an appetite. I skipped many meals and I realized that it felt good to punish myself—but It didn't eliminate the feelings of worthlessness and self hatred. When I looked in the mirror, I saw my protruding stomach and squishy arms. I squeezed the extra fat on my legs and hated myself even more.
At this point in my life, I never considered that my thoughts were not REAL. Did you ever think about your thoughts? What are they? Are they real? Do you ever question your thoughts? Doubt them? After battling my eating disorder for over 10 years and working hard through the many steps (which ultimately became the basis for my KARMA Coaching Method), I can share with you this much: Your thoughts mi