I have been away staying with family this week and although I had a lovely time, and managed to keep on track ed-wise, I could feel the need to binge bubbling up over the last few days. I made a deal with myself that if I stayed on track for the days that were necessary then I could b/p when I got home.
Planning a b/p seems a little strange, but I have read about this in the ED literature before, with the rationale that if you are going to ‘lapse’ then being mindful while doing it at least provides an opportunity to learn.Obviously not b/p at all would be better but I just knew I wasn’t strong enough to resist so I thought this would be an interesting experiment.I went to the shops purposefully to buy food. I have to admit, now I am allowing myself a much wider range of food I felt far less overpowered by my cravings in the supermarket. Usually I would be imaging eating all of the foods and wondering what they tasted like and how good it would feel, but because I’ve eaten lots of these foods recently I didn’t have much desire for them. That was a nice but very welcome feeling. There was definitely a point where I thought ‘am I really that pushed about binging?’ so I did consider just getting lunch and leaving and no b/p-ing, but I knew that I would probably just give in when I got home anyway and that I would prefer to purposefully b/p than be out of control at home (in hindsight I have my suspicions this was all ED talking and not actually my sensible voice like I thought!).
I bought a few things and headed home. I ate my lunch as planned and then did stop for a moment to pause whether I wanted to keep going, and the truth was I did want to (bleurgh). So I binged, not massively (I won’t share it here in case it’s triggering?) but a definite binge. At one point I did consider that I could binge and not purge, but I’m just not there yet so I did purge.
After the first few bites it stopped being pleasurable. It was exhausting and painful.
I slept for nearly 5 hours after, I can really see the effects it has on my body now. And that was my day gone- 6/7 hours spent eating, purging and sleeping. What a waste.
So the result of my experiment is that it wasn’t worth it. I need to store this away for the next time I think it will be a nice way to spend an afternoon. Being mindful during it was awful too, it’s much easier to just switch your brain off and let it happen, pretending you are not an active participant. However, some small wins from it were that there were a couple of times that I paused and reflected on what I was doing. While it made no difference this time, maybe it will in the future. I can only hope!
I pulled myself together then and made my breakfast and my lunch for tomorrow. It may have ruined today but I can stop it ruining tomorrow too by starting the week of disorganised.
Eating disorders suck. I can’t wait for the day when I look back on this and the memory of giving ED a whole day to play will only be a distant memory.