Thursday, February 20, 2014

I Still Can't Wear Tight Pants

    It's true. I can't.
    Besides public speaking and spiders (shivers!), tight pants send me into panic attacks like nothing else. Tights, leggings, stiff jeans; I can't deal with them. I ball my fists and tremble and want to scream and run and cry every time I pull them up.
     Sometimes, I succeed and make it through the day. Most times, I rip the leggings off and change back into loose yoga pants before a minute has passed. One time I made it through half the day and wound up having a panic attack in my Calculus II class.
     This isn't some weird, lingering modesty attempt, oh no, with my small shape I barely had to worry about that nonsense. Nor is this some silly first world problem. No, this is the remnant of my eating disorder.
     This is the deep parasite within that wants to be too thin, that rejoiced when my antidepressants curbed my appetite for a week. This is the fiery demon that screams 'look how everyone will make fun of you' when I feel bloated, the freakish clown that mocks me with reminders of unpleasant, needless gossip I've overheard on other people's weight.
    I hate it. The process of recovery has been long and arduous, but it's been years since I restricted my food and exercised myself to the point of nothing left. Yet this - this stupid, stupid! panic - lingers.
    I thought I was making progress. At the beginning of the semester, I wore leggings twice in one week. Seriously! Then the hesitation came. Then the I-feel-fat days came and went, and so I stayed away from the leggings on precaution. Saturday I tried again, and I knew what would happen even as I pull them on.
    It sounds so foolish, to say I can't wear tight pants without panicking, but, hey, this is what's happening in my life.
    Yet at the same time, my therapist has told me to look in the mirror each day and say, with conviction, "God did good when He made me." At first I was just doing it because I didn't think much of my looks in general, but you know what I found? I've started to appreciate this indefinable hair color I've always loathed, and I'm starting to pick out features of my face I actually like. Fancy that, I'm actually daring to like the way I was created. So maybe I should apply this saying to my body, too.
    I usually practice keeping my head up when I walk by picking out a beautiful or special characteristic to everyone who passes me by. Maybe - I so fear being selfish - but maybe I can do this to myself, too, every day, at least until I'm comfortable enough in my own skin to don those black leggings and wear the cute skirt I bought over winter break.
    Now, it's your turn. Because you're awesome. What's something special and/or beautiful about you today? (It can be looks, personality, a thought that comes to mind, etc. But compliment yourself today, okay, friend?).



  1. Hmmmmm... "something special/and or beautiful about" me today... Uhhh, I honestly don't know! I've never been good at complimenting myself.
    Though, this saddens me terribly to know that you've had such a struggle with your image...

    1. Aw ... well you seem deep and thoughtful. And you left an insightful comment on my last post today.
      Yeah, image has been such an insecurity for me. It sucks, although I would say I've learned a lot about compassion from it ... silver linings I guess. :)

  2. Hmmm... Yeah, I also get those "I-feel-displeased-with-how-I-look/act/interact/am" days, so thanks for your suggestions on how to change my mindset when that happens! I'm glad that you're recovering from your depression, eating disorder, self-hate, and whatnot, even if it's not all over yet. Let's walk up together, 'kay?

    "What's something special and/or beautiful about you today?" Well... I did up my hair a little bit, and it looks kinda cool? I feel a little bit more determined than usual to become a better dancer, instead of just feeling bad that I'm not as good as other dancers? I had to tell a classmate's memoir in my Acting class today, and everyone really seemed to like it and think I was funny! Those are good things ^_^ So what's your special, beautiful thing today?

  3. Yes, it's so much better to do it together! (Ha, did I half-rhyme there?)
    That's great about dancing and acting and your hair! :) I wish I'd seen it.
    My special, beautiful thing today ... hmm, I was having a conversation with my labmates and realized I actually like my glasses now.

  4. Beautiful, beautiful girl. You inspire and challenge me.

  5. I'm with you on the tight pants. I think one of the scariest bits of ED recovery is facing up to your body and letting other people see it. You're 'at' the end point instead of saying 'when I'm thinner' or 'when I'm bigger' - like making peace with your shape (with all its normal lumps and bumps). Also being seen after hiding for so long behind weight or baggy clothes or lies or whatever is a huge step. Emma Scriv (sorry - my google account wouldn't let me sign in for some reason, so I'm moonlighting under Glen's)

    My ears are very special. x

    1. I think you nailed it. Hiding (be it physical, emotional, or spiritual) is kind of my go-to when I feel insecure now, so wearing tight pants is a huge step I really hope to be comfortable with someday.
      Thanks for replying, Emma! :)