I have managed to not engage in bulimia for long periods at different points my life. For awhile when I first met my husband, I wanted to be “better” for him. Better in terms of recovery, and just a better person–one who didn’t regularly shove her fingers down her throat.
Then, when I was pregnant with my first child, I wanted to do everything perfectly. I read the books, took the supplements, stayed active, and kept my fingers well away from my mouth. I managed that entire pregnancy and into his first year without bingeing and purging, and I naively thought, Well, that’s it! I recovered without even trying!
When I was pregnant with my second child, things really came to a head. I was actually sick with her, and I spent 7 months walking the line between actually being sick or making myself sick… it made me feel good to know I wasn’t really purging, I was just giving into morning sickness, right? Then, after a very difficult birth and nearly dying, my thyroid just stopped functioning. I was in hell for at least 8 months after her birth, gaining weight, feeling awful, and not knowing what was wrong.
What I’ve realized is that I need to love something–someone–more than the disorder. It has usually been other people: my husband, my children. For the first time, I think maybe it can be me. I’m working on it. Day 38.