Monday, 23 February 2015

A Tale of Gain and Loss

I'd been crying about it all week. The scales. Mum wanted me to go in last Thursday to talk to the dietician about it, but I didn't even want to go in on Tuesday. But I did.

She wasn't there when I arrived. My anxiety peaked when I heard her walk in. I tried to force a smile as she walked past and said good morning, but I don't think I managed it. I felt sick. I didn't want to talk to her about it, but I couldn't not talk to her about it either. I wanted to run and leave before she came back out. But I didn't.

She asked the usual questions - how's your week been, intake, have I been cooking, leaving the house, sewing. I could barely say two words.
"Have you been pretty quiet this week?"
"No... I don't know."

She asks what's wrong, and I eventually force out the dreaded words.
"I've gained weight."

"What makes you say that?"
"I've been weighing myself on the Wii (more on this later), my body feels different and I'm not stupid."
I told her the weights I'd scribbled down.

Just before I started seeing her, on my proper scales, I weighed 47.4kg (BMI 13.7).
Last January, on the same proper scales, I weighed 43.7 (BMI 12.6)
The weeks following, I weighed between 45-47kg on the Wii Fit.
As of today, I'm... 50.2 on the Wii.

She looked at her computer
"Do you want to know numbers?"
"It doesn't matter any more."
At that point, she could've told me exactly what I weighed clothed-and-coffee'd each week for the last three years and I wouldn't have cared less. I didn't even get on her scales this week. When I saw my GP two days later, she had my weight screen up and I just stared at it. So much for turning my head whenever the dietician types in my weight.

She said that from last January (43.7), I went up a shocking 8-fucking-kilograms between then and September/October (approx. 51.7kg, BMI 14.9), but have lost about 4kg since (approx. 47.7kg, BMI 13.8).
( another kilo since she last weighed me)

I wanted to die.

"That's like a kilo a month... Why didn't you say anything?"
"I did, like I do each week."

Okay, quick break here to explain how my blind weighing supposedly works. When I first met the dietician, I told her I wanted to stop weighing myself but still have an idea without having to know exact numbers. She asked what I did want to know, and we agreed she'd tell me if I gained or lost each week (no numbers), and if I started to gain or lose outside of a normal maintenance range (say, 2-3kg either side?)
It's not like I gained every week. The occurrence of gain vs loss wasn't that different to any other time, but obviously the amount was.

"But when I was losing, before last January, you'd sit down every week after telling me if I'd gained/lost and say 'there's a pattern forming, you're losing weight, you need to see your GP, you need to drink Ensure, you need to eat more' - not just whether I'd gained or lost that week. It wasn't just a fluctuation, and you made it clear."
"But what would that do to you, if I did say 'you're gaining weight'?"

What would that frikkin' do to me?!
I asked her to. It'd mean I could trust her. It would mean she was actually monitoring my weight and keeping me informed. It would mean I'd be aware of it, not surprised by it when it's already added up. It would mean I don't have to keep weighing myself at home.

It's not like I ever expected her to encourage me to stop gaining or eat less. But it would've been nice if just told me.

She asked what triggered all of this. I said I wasn't an idiot, I knew I'd gained, my body feels different and it's not dysmorphia. I just stupidly hoped the gain would be more like 5kg, not 8. The Wii Fit proved it earlier this year, and I was tired of it being the elephant in the room. I was tired of her saying "down a little bit, nothing to be worried about, but we'll keep an eye on it" when my weight drops. We both knew but no one was talking about it and I had to talk about it

We went back and forth for a while before she just said
"Look, we're never going to reach a consensus on this, I'm not arguing about it any more."
"I'm not trying to argue..."

I tried to talk but I just kept crying and she was getting more and more fed up with me. I was sat there crying like a loon, not understanding why she didn't just say something.
Eventually she just said "I'm not talking to you about this any more."
And so I left.

I didn't even get to say my piece. She thinks I'm angry and argumentative because I've gained weight, when it's not like that at all. I just feel so incredibly sad, I don't understand why she didn't tell me.

And it sucks because I really did try to talk it through. I wanted to bolt when she said "8 kilos", but I didn't. I didn't want to run out upset and carry it for another week. But she didn't even want to talk about it so now I'm carrying it heavier than before.

I's not even really about how much I'd gained, or even that I'd gained. It's not about the fact she did do the right thing medically to try to get my weight back up a little. My problem is that I trusted her to at least tell me when I started to gain outside fluctuations, just like she did when I was losing, and now I feel like she'd only tell me what she chooses to. I didn't expect to hear "eat less, lose weight". But I did expect to hear "your weight is definitely increasing" as an objective fact.

This is going to sound crazy, but if anyone's going to understand, it's you guys.
I put a lot of trust in her when I stopped weighing myself on the reg and started letting her weigh me. This isn't forced. I didn't start seeing her because I had to, and I don't need to be weighed. It was the first time I'd volunteered to be weighed by anyone. Unless I was sectioned or in hospital, I refused to let doctors weigh me (though I'd tell them with honesty what I weighed that morning).

And I let her weigh me because I couldn't handle the stress any more. I couldn't cope with weighing myself and being so knocked down by every little gain, and every not-big-enough loss. I thought, she said, she'd actually monitor my weight and be honest with me so I could have an idea of what I weighed without having to know a number, not sugar-coat it and only tell me what she chooses to. It was the one reason I didn't have to weigh myself at home.

It was such a deep, personal thing to let her weigh me, and in a way I feel she's damaged that trust. Then I feel like an idiot for entrusting such a personal responsibility to someone else. I'm so upset, and it's not just about the weight, but it feels like I'm being completely ridiculous, but it really hurts, you guys.

How could I trust her to tell me before I gained another 8kg? I don't even want to think about it. It feels like a disease, spreading through my body, but I caught it just in time.

Now I have to keep weighing myself at home. I mentioned before, I've been weighing myself on the Wii Fit. It's been an on-and-off thing for the last few months, plus a month after last January's weigh-in. I don't do it everyday, just three or four days a week. I'm still too scared to see my real, accurate, naked-and-void weight on the bathroom scales. The Wii makes it less real, since I don't know my actual weight.

I'm not 100% sure when I'm going to allow myself the real bathroom scale. The temptation is huge, but at the same time, there's a comfort in not knowing my exact weight. The Wii has never matched my scales, but I still know I've lost 3kg since the start of the year. From the dietician, I know I'm around 4kg higher than I was last January. That's enough. For now, at least.

I've just been a wreck about it. I'd been crying all week, since the Tuesday before when everything hit me, and I've been crying all week since. Everything just keeps on stacking up. I can't take it and I can't articulate how I feel. So overwhelmed, so scared, so very low.

Now I have my appointment with her tomorrow and I still don't want to go but I know I should but I'm just dreading it. I can't just go in and pretend that everything's fine, it's not.

I don't even know if I should keep seeing her. I haven't been actively upping my intake for some time, we don’t talk much about actual nutrition and food choices (beyond deficiencies/supplements), there's no benefit of her weighing me any more. She gives me support, but I don't know how much support I even want any more. I'm just so tired of everything.

Please excuse me while I die of shame. I don't know what'd be worse - telling you all I've gained such a horrific amount, or just saying I've gained and letting you assume even worse. I feel utterly disgusted with myself.

Off-topic, and I know this is long enough, but I got a new pair of shoes a few weeks ago. I haven't had the chance to wear them out yet, but I finally took some photos.

They immediately reminded me of a pair of shoes I had when I was 15/16 years
old. I found them at an op shop and wore them 'til they fell apart.
I hadn't bought new shoes in years, but I had my eyes set on three pairs from the Wittner end-of-season clearance. This is the final pair.

I don't like talking money, but these were worth the wait. The first two pairs were bought on clearance, but then they added an extra 20% offer. These ended up costing just $31 AUD, down from $169.

10.5cm heel, oh baby



  1. I can understand why you're upset. Your dietician should have mentioned that you had gained significantly, without telling you the number. It must have been a pretty horrible shock discovering it on your own whenever you though you were informed. I can understand it from the dietician's point of view too though. Even though you've gained your health would benefit from you gaining a lot more. No one would want to risk, or feel responsible for, you trying to lose weight again.

    It seems like your weight has been up and down quite a bit over the years, but your dietician's always been there for you. Maybe now's a good time to talk about this and reset some kind of boundaries so that you don't get such a shock again.

    There's no reason to be disgusted. I know you'd find it difficult to see, but being a little bit heavier now means that you're a little bit healthier. That's something to be proud of. x

  2. What a horrible breach of trust! I totally understand why you reacted the way you did. It's not the number, it is the trust issue, and if you can't trust someone who's supposed to help you... But don't be disgusted with yourself, please. You are in no way disgusting and we love you.

    (love those purple tights/socks)

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  4. Everything I want to say comes out wrong. Forgive me in advance!

    I think you should maintain the 50. Fifty at your height is nothing and it's probably a good idea before flu season anyway, given your lung troubles. Of course it's foolish to even suggest it but truth is best.

    I guess your dietitian was motivated to keep you alive and well. I doubt she'd see it as devastating. But I know for you, it is.

    I don't know where you should go from here. But I do think there's been enough upheaval lately and you should hang onto her. There are bumps in any relationship. Sad to say we can't expect perfection from anyone including ourselves!!

    1. I totaly agree with you. What doest kill the relationship only makes it stronger.

  5. i had to read this whole thing in one go, mostly because 1) i had no intention of commenting because i am so so low today and 2) i didn't think i could muster up enough energy to write between a comment.

    my heart is throbbing.

    firstly, that gain means nothing to me (just as your last comment). those numbers mean nothing to me. in my head, you are still ridiculously so underweight that not even telling me that if you hit the a BMI of 18,5-19, i would still think you need to put more on. (and an irrelevant side-note: those with BMIs of 16-19 actually trigger me more than anyone with...let's say a BMI of 12-15. funnily enough. just thought to put in a 'fun fact' if i would.)

    with that aside...

    i understand why she did it. but there's no excuse for doing it. that is absolutely horrible. i cannot even begin to imagine the sheer amount of betrayal you feel for it. i understand what you mean. it's not the weight itself that is bothering you (though i can tell it is bothering you) as much as the fact that she refused to tell you that there was a trend heading in that direction (and i hope i've chosen my words carefully enough).

    i honestly can only hope that you're dealing with it well. honestly, i would be absolutely pissed. the biggest most prominent thing in my depression is the anger. i would've been very angry, to the point where i could've hit someone or broken something. i am angry now. i'm angry at her. i'm angry at how she just managed to get by. i want to be angrier than i am at her, but i guess there is some justification, no matter how small, towards what she did. it does not excuse her actions. it nowhere near comes to excusing her actions. this was a sheer act of manipulation to me - she played her cards. she misused your trust.

    feel free to be angry at her. feel free to question why she's even there.

    but do not for one second you think your worth has gone by because you've put on any amount of kilos. you are not a number to me. there are certain people in my life - they might as well just walk around with their weights plastered in their forehead because that's what they are to me, even if they are good friends and good people. you are not like that. you have always been different. you are extraordinary.

    i hope you're not stressing yourself out. i hope you're not forcing yourself to do things you don't want to do out of guilt. i hope that things get a little easier soon.

    -Sam Lupin

    PS. on an additional note, i looked up at the first comment and raised an eyebrow. i honestly do not think you are any bit healthier now than you are a few kilos before or after (as terrible as that sounds). in complete and utter honesty. as sick as it sounds like, if that comment bothered me a little about being a little healthier, then it might just bother you. then again i am angry and violent. because i remember the supplement conundrum and i understood that. i maintain my thought. even if you were to hit a marginally healthy BMI, i would still think you need to gain more. i would still think that you are unhealthy. i feel like the cut-off point from which i see you from 'unhealthy' to 'healthy' has so many protocols to meet. as strange as that sounds.

    i hope this comment doesn't sound incredibly stupid. the more i read it, the more i realised that it is completely confusing. i'm sorry.

  6. Ugh Bella. I love you. I do and I knew that you know that. That being said, I've got some thoughts.

    First off, it's kind of an ethics dilemma she's dealing with. She's got to build rapport with you and yet get telling you also puts you in the place where you'll keep losing but I'd you find out you'll lose too. Think of it from her perspective. She's got a severely ill client. What's her options? I personally think it would be terrifying to work with you because the balance is so delicate between spiraling and maintaining. I don't mean that as a knock on you, it's just where you're at and that's okay because you have the power to do anything! :)

    Second of all, you should tell her it feels like she broke trust. I think it would help her unbending and you being even slightly assertive for yourself. You've worked with her for so long that I think she would be okay with you telling her. You'll all be in the same page and that's good.

    I do care about you Bella. It's been a while since I've hast my eating disorder so while I feel empathy, I also feel some frustration that you can't experience life without caring about food and you've got all the trauma worked out and you reread these posts purely to remember the journey. It's okay to be okay. It's awesome even! I just don't think you can live and I want that for you, too fully see the works and smile a lot and not be stuck at home.

    Lots of love

    1. There are so many typos because I'm on my phone ugh sorry! Also, I sound like an asshole and I'm not trying to... My teachers always say I sound do CBT because I'm direct. My fault. :)

    2. P. S. S. Your socks are perfect. Very Tim Burton. With as well as you see I wish he would hire you to make costumes for his movies!

  7. Bella, beautiful Bella.
    I'm a little pissed off because my internet glitched and I lost the comment I wrote. I'm a lot pissed at what they did to you, that's so unfair. It's about the TRUST. Trust is so important to me and she really should have stuck to your agreement.
    I get that she might have thought that keeping that information from you might help your recovery in some way (though I don't know how - blindly gaining isn't recovering, more like, avoiding a freak-out for a while) I don't know, she must have had her reasons, but I disagree.

    You are not disgusting, you are lovely and beautiful (and so are your SHOES omg) , and I know that simple words wont change the fact that ana makes you feel like that but I hope you find some solace in the fact that there are so many voices here that say the opposite to the one that makes you feel bad.

    Take care sweetheart, lots of hugs and strength.
    M.D xx

  8. Hey Bella,

    first of all I really like those shoes! I think your dietician's behaviour was really not professional here.I am sure she had good intentions and did not want to make you lose any more weight.It is sort of understandable but ridiculously unprofessional. After all, this is about trust.And her statement about not talking to you about this anymore.....come on! Of course you want to talk about this.I really think you deserve an apologie. Please stand up for yourself and talk about this in your next session.Keep in mind she did not want to harm you. Still she did and has to face the emotions that caused on your site. Keep your head up :-)

  9. i understand why you're upset. i would be completely upset too. but like i was telling a friend of mine last week, sometimes what we think wouldn't bother someone (because it wouldn't bother us) is really the thing that bothers them the most. i know you've been with her for a long time and (pardon my language) holy shit, you know, she weighs you. maybe it's just my brain that's saying that's really intimate, but i do think that's really, really personal. i think you should talk to her, or write it out (like you did here) and explain it that way. so you don't have to worry about her interrupting you or misinterpreting what you say. writing things always helps. even if only a little.

    and i love those shoes. (shoes as in both pairs, not just the first one.) and those tights are awesome. i used to have black and white ones like that. what i would say is if you're upset, be upset. just don't stay upset. if you're sad, then be sad. just don't stay sad. you should feel what you're feeling and process it (yes, i know it's me saying this, but it's still true), then try your best to move forward. much love, bella xx <3

  10. I'm going to apologise in advance if anything upsets you; I really don't intend to but you can never be sure with the internet at times how things come across.

    Did you agree on the 2-3kg range? If not, maybe she thought a higher range was appropriate? If so, maybe she thought telling you that you were over the 'safe' zone would freak you out to the point where you'd get really sick again? She may have thought that even though you asked her, you might not have taken it well?

    I'm not sure, I'm not the dietician and so I can only guess, but I fully understand why you're pissed that she didn't tell you. Trust is a major thing for me too; more often it's the broken trust than the issue that upsets me like this. Weighing someone is very personal though and maybe she didn't realise this would have had this effect?

    Maybe you could write to her? Or adapt this post and show her that? If you didn't get the chance to say anything, you could try at least. At least then she's aware just how much this affected you beyond the tears. I don't agree with how she acted with you though- that was out of order.

    I love the shoes! I'd still be nowhere near your height in them. About 5'7", I think. I wish to be as tall as you, but considering I've not grown in 12 years... Not likely.

    <3 love you xxx

  11. Omg Bella. That is so wrong. I don't care if she had good intentions. That's idiotic. You needed safeguards and she agreed to them and then didn't stay true to her word. You are sick but you're still to be treated as an adult when it comes to your care (unless you lose the plot entirely, of course). What was her plan then? That you'd gain and not notice or somehow magically be ok with it? Getting better is fucking hard and its going to be painful to adjust to changes in your body but slow going is the way forward. Otherwise it's just going to trigger a mega relapse. I'm proud of you for going even though you didn't want to, and bringing it up. That was brave and you have every right to be upset with her. But I really hope this won't trigger you to give up and retreat completely. Loves you so much. And thank you for your cheering me on with my selfie game. I feel like such an idiot. :P I formally challenge you to do a "pretend to be a person" photo. xo

  12. Great shoes ;) and thanks for the supportive comments on my blog, much appreciated.

    Sorry this gain has been hard for you. I hope a little extra weight, while scary, makes you feel healthier and stronger, too.

    You're Beautiful!!!

  13. I'm so sorry you were betrayed like that. She should have told you, like she said she would at the very beginning. You deserve to be upset about it, and I'm sorry she got so frustrated with you when you tried to talk to her. That's definitely not fair.
    Honey, we never care how much you gain. You should never feel ashamed when you write a post like this. Everyone loves you, as you can tell by the multitude of wonderful comments. We will support you no matter what. Your shoes are fabulous by the way! Take care of yourself.
    <3 Lee

  14. That wasn'tvery "professional" behaviour of her, and you have the riht to be upset especially after letting you down. I hope you can trust her or someone else again if it comes to controlling weight and wish you better mood. Don't cry, sweetie!

  15. Dearest Bella, I completely understand why you are so utterly hurt from what happened. I feel like I can feel your pain because I feel exactly the same about the scale, it rules my life at the moment, and it would be such a relief to be able to put my trust into someone else to weigh me. I think it's a huge trust issue that's now causing you to hurt so much. It's like, she doesn't realise how much it must have taken you to be able to trust her to weigh you every week, and let you know what's going on. You've done your part of the deal by surrendering yourself to her, but she's not played fair by not being completely honest with you in return. My heart truly goes out to you. I'm sending you oodles of love and hugs, and remember that I love you no matter your weight, you are beautiful because you're you, and that is more than enough. Stay strong lovely girl xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx

  16. I would be upset too. I think she probably didn't want to say anything about the gain lest it send you into a weight loss frenzy but at the same time it did violate your agreement that she would tell you either way. That part of it is not fair. Sorry you feel bad about a gain. Me telling you that it's good for you is not going to help. I know how the ED mind works. I hope you can feel better about it at some point though and be willing to let it stay.