I Feel Like My Body’s Betray Me

Its hard to function, go to school, and have a life when you can barely get out of bed in the morning and the only thing making it possible is the fact that classes will be failed if not attended.  I don’t talk about it much (mainly because I didn’t even fully understand my diagnoses until a few months ago) but I have an autoimmune disease called Hashimoto’s. This causes my body to mistake my cells as viruses and other things that need to be eliminated to keep my body healthy. So my body is essentially attacking it’s self mainly, my thyroid. With my thyroid under attack constantly it results in it not functioning fully or properly making it under active. This results in symptoms like:

  • Exhaustion
  • Fatigue
  • Nausea
  • Heaviness in Limbs
  • Hair loss
  • Dry skin
  • Tingling and loss circulation in hand and feet
  • Swollen feet/ankles
  • Sensitivity to cold

These are just some of the symptoms I’m dealing with every day. Having to call out of school because I physically cannot leave my bed or to go sit in urgent care in hopes that I’ll get a referral to a specialist (I didn’t) is frustrating. Especially since I am making a huge effort to take care of my body. I’m eating regularly and healthily, drinking plenty of water, getting more than enough sleep, and taking my medications and still my body betrays me and refuses to function.

And the most annoying thing is there is nothing more that I can do other than learn to live with it. Medication helps greatly but any dosage change could take weeks to actually take effect. Besides I can’t even see a specialist until I’m established with a primary care doctor who can give me a referral.

I’m spending most of my days right now sleeping and that’s so infuriating because I did not come to school to sleep. I came to learn, grow, and build relationships. I thought I was ready to start a new chapter in my life and put my health issues behind me but I was wrong.

Peace&Love,

Rai

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Love?

Lights flashing,

World spinning,

Quickly!

Move your lips as fast as you can,

Until the only noise is your heart jumping out of your mouth!

And then, silence.

 

I sigh in relief,

Until a tidal wave of anxiety,

Bigger than any building I’ve ever seen takes me.

 

I jump,

Hoping that someone will catch me,

And convince me that the wave is merely a puddle,

Too shallow to even drown in,

And maybe in reality that’s all it is.

 

But right here and now it feels like a battle that’s gone on for eight years too long,

With millions of casualties.

 

And while I’ve survived and many have not,

The idea of peace seems like such a far-off dream that not even God can bring it to me.

Though He promises,

I sometimes cannot help but feel venom passing through my lips,

Liar.

 

Yet even in these times of darkness I feel a sensation of comfort drift over me,

Maybe I’m crazy?

Perhaps I’m mad?

Hopefully it’s love,

Yes, let’s go with that,

Love.

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I’m Getting Antsy

Well it’s been 24 days since I entered treatment and I’ve been given my first pass home for the night last Sunday. I was excited to be home, thrilled actually but I was also nervous. This, my home is where I binge. It’s my comfort place and when I was home at that very moment the muscle memory of eating nonstop was kicking in and the sweet treats in the pantry were so tempting.

And there was no reason to. No one was fighting at home, there was no yelling or reason to be stressed but I was craving food. And as I’m writing this I don’t even know if I’ll post it because of the stigma around fat woman, eating, and eating disorders. But if I do I want you to know one thing, this is hard.

Eating disorders and mental illness are hard and can take innocent lives but for me, my Binge Eating Disorder is one of the hardest things I’ve ever had to deal with. Sure, once upon a time ago I was diagnosed with EDNOS and struggled with sever restricting but that’s the crazy thing about eating disorder, they change. Often with you.

I’ve had to face things I’ve buried deep inside myself. I’ve had to and still am fighting the voices in my head, online, and in real life that tell me I’m worth nothing because of my weight.

And I’ll probably have to fight it for the rest of my life or until society changes their views on women like me, whichever comes first. But things are getting better. Slowly but surely and they will continue to as long as I’m not afraid to put in the work.

 

Much Peace&Love,

Rai

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To the Woman on the Porch

To the Woman on the Porch,

I’m not sure where to start or even who to address this letter to. I mean, how do you start a letter to a woman you don’t know but briefly met over ten years ago?

I guess I can start by saying thank you. 12 years ago, sometime in the summer, when the sun was shining and life was good I, along with my twin sister and grandma where in a horrible car accident right outside your home. To this day I’m not sure whose fault it was my grandma’s who had a stop sign and was turning left or the drunk man that was speeding down the road at 80mph. All I do know is one minute it was clear and the next it wasn’t.  And then, time froze. I looked to the right out my window and considered climbing out of the car and climbing onto the small grassy mound that was part of someone’s front yard because there was more than enough time to get to safety. As I turned to my grandma to tell her my plan the cars collided and everything went black.

And then a man, the one that had been sitting on your front porch with you was opening my grandma’s door and putting her cold-water bottle to her forehead while telling her not to move. I went into control mode and quickly climbed out of the car, wanting to help just as my grandma began panicking thinking that powder from the airbags was smoke. As the man calmed her I unbuckled my twin sister who was in the backseat behind me and pulled her from the car. We thankfully where able to walk away. But my grandma wasn’t so lucky.

By now my parents, little sister, and paternal grandparents where on the scene and I broke. I was only 11 but was disgusted with myself for crying but I couldn’t stop. And I only cried harder as I ran to my parents who were parked down the street and passed the man who had hit us. He was covering his face with a bloody towel. I would later learn that he wasn’t wearing a seatbelt and had hit his windshield. I’ve never hated anyone before but I hated that man. My grandma was being loaded into an ambulance at that moment because of him and we weren’t sure she would live. His car had hit her door perfectly, the car was totaled.

As my family and I made are way back to the scene to see my grandma off to the hospital my tears became heavier and I realize now that I was having a panic attack. Then, you approached. The man that had helped us was long gone but you where there with presents of all things. Offering each one of us a stuffed animal which I gratefully accepted and hugged it to my chest. Realizing only in that moment that my chest hurt, I had a slight burn from the airbag on my chest. But that didn’t matter. All I cared about was my grandma. As the ambulance left you offered words of comfort to us. Explaining what the neck brace she had been wearing was for and that everything would be okay. And then you were gone but I have never forgotten you.

I was a stranger to you and you cared for me. You were a blessing. My family and I could have crashed and no one could have come to our aid. Neither my sister, grandma, or I had a cellphone and what would have happened to the drunk man who was nearly unconscious after we crashed?

Yet you were there and you helped me. Someone who could not pay you back. And while I no longer have the stuffed animal you gifted with me or even remember what it looked like I remember you and always will. You and that wonderful man that were seated on the porch.

Thank You.

Peace&Love,

Rai

For I was hungry and you gave me food, I was thirsty and you gave me drink, I was a stranger and you welcomed me. -Matthew 25:35

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To My Best Friend

 

Sup Punk?

I’m sure I don’t even to address this letter because anyone significant in my life knows who I’m talking about because it seems that I can’t help but mention you at least once in every conversation I have because besides my sisters most of my memories that I hold involve you the good and the bad but mostly the good.

Accord to my Facebook memories it’s been about a year since I last saw you in person. Since hugged you in front of a bunch of strangers in front of an airport, since laughed in the same room as you, watched a scary movie that scared you way too easily to the point that it had to be followed by a Disney movie. It’s been a while.

And while we don’t talk everyday there is still not a day that doesn’t pass where I don’t see something that makes me think of you. That’s why I’m always tagging in the comments of silly post on Facebook and sending you pins on Pinterest.

And can I tell you a secret? You are the only person that I don’t worry about because you’re strong, stronger than most people. You’ve had journeys in your life that have been hell and you’ve come out on the other side more beautiful than I thought was even possible. I won’t go into details because they’re your stories to tell but I am proud of you.

You’re also the only person that I doesn’t have me worrying about my weight when we’re hanging out or out in public. Why? I’m not sure. but you ensure an incredible about of confidence in me when I’m with you. Maybe because I know if anyone says anything you’ll beat them to a bloody pulp despite your small frame. Or because your charm has me not caring for once in my life. Your power over me is amazing.

I hope I’ve had half the influence on you as you have had on me. Friends since kindergarten, you have played a big role on who I am as a person. I can’t believe that there was once a time where going a week without seeing each other was too long and now it’s been a year and we’ve survived!

And the best part? When I do see you again it will be like nothing has changed. That’s what I love the most.

Peace&Love,

Rai

PS: Look up Beautiful Thing by Grace Vanderwaalon YouTube. Do it Punk!

 

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Well, it’s been a while. Much longer than I would like to admit, over a month and it’s crazy to think that so much has changed in such short time. Not big things that will redirect my life but little things that slowly add up until they overwhelm me and I retreat to what I know…disrespecting my body. Which is why I am laying out some of the changes, both good and bad. For my sanity than anything.

First? I got bangs! (Bonus points if you read that as Serena from Legally Blonde.)

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I’m quite fond of them and it’s been a surprisingly big change for me. Whenever I change anything about my appearance I tend to panic for a period of time as my mind adjust and realizes that this is my body and I can do with what I wish.

I also got a tattoo. It’s a pink carnation in dedication to my mama and it’s lovely. It was painful, although not as painful as the tattoo I got touched up on my foot but totally worth it. People often wonder why I decorate my body with tattoos. Because it makes me more self confident. It reminds me that I am a work of art, made in God’s image and I am beautiful.

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And of course I’m on Fat People Hate again which is no surprise. I seem to pop up there every few months. I just wish there was something I could do about it but I feel powerless. Especially since Voat refuses to answer my emails about the site.

I got a new camera and have been teaching myself a bit about photography and I’m proud of what I’ve done so far. Yay for being self-taught!

IMG_0053

The fifth thing is a bit hard to type out because I’ve never considered myself a quitter but I quit my job at a popular retail store. Not because of my coworkers, managers, or the company but because my anxiety has flared up to the point that I cannot physically drive to work. I was calling out so often, it just wasn’t far to the rest of my coworkers and the company.

So I’ve had to reevaluate myself and mental health. I am in the process of going off my effector for my medication because my psychiatrist fears that it numbs me but I think he just hopes I lose weight once I’m off it. Still I do want to take less medication so I’m sticking with it and think that with therapy I can handle it. So I’m going back to therapy which I have no shame in admitting. Having no job also means that I have to set a schedule for myself including some form of exercise and a regular sleep cycle.

It”s going to be a challenge but I want to be as healthy as possible before I go back to school this fall. And I will be.

Peace&Love,

Rai

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A War Shed of Hunger

With long hair and short eyelashes,

She wonders if she would ever be beautiful,

Surrounded by women half her size,

The tattooed belief “thin is in” on her bones burns

And she realizes that an ongoing battle will rage for her soul until the very end,

 

Spear sharpened fingernails claw at the memories,

Nostalgia is a deadly disease,

Because hunger and the high that it promises sounds too good,

 

Vile builds up her throat,

Erupted from the pits of fire within her,

And she realizes that this is what control feels like,

 

Loss is drowning in the piles of promises that cannot be kept,

Comfort is temporary,

Better take it while she can,

 

With carvings into her god made thighs,

And the disrespect of the temple gifted to her,

Lacking the ability to understand where she truly stands,

Belief is a two-way street,

 

A metamorphosis occurs slowly within,

And the clawing for memories becomes a desperate need for safety,

To make a new,

For the future not the past,

 

A war for her life becomes mini battles every day,

From sun, up to the fall of night,

When the moon is clouded over

And the stars are hidden

This is her battlefield,

 

One breath at a time,

One spoonful of hope,

One chance at life again.

 

Do you not know that your bodies are temples of the Holy Spirit, who is in you, whom you have received from God? You are not your own; you were bought at a price. Therefore honor God with your bodies.

1 Corinthians 6:19&20

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