Pregnancy and Eating Disorders

I’m anorexic. I may not look it anymore but anorexia doesn’t leave. It’s kind of like a leak in your house… at it’s peak, it was flooding my house. Now, it’s more of a moist stain. It has its ebbs and flows.

Thankfully, I have a much healthier relationship with food and my body image these days. Thankfully, despite the damage I did to my body as a teenager, I was able to get pregnant. That was one of my biggest fears as I got older. I don’t know how I would have been able to forgive myself if I had been the cause of my own infertility. I’m grateful I never had to deal with that.

I’m pregnant now, and in my fifth month. It’s been a rough ride for me, emotionally (physically too but that’s to be expected). It’s easier now that I’m visibly pregnant, but at the beginning, when it was just bloat, ideas of restriction flew through my mind. I had days where I cried about how I looked. Vain, I know. It was difficult to give up a workout I truly loved (CorePower – I’ll be back for you soon) and be pretty inactive my first trimester. It was hard to see my pants tighten, and my boobs get bigger.

What’s helped me cope? Obviously, knowing that I am growing and nourishing my baby helps. Being pregnant has made me think not just about how I look, but how I feel. If I eat well and exercise often, I know my baby will be better off. If I restrict and overexercise, I’ll be hurting not just me, but my lil babe.

Being active has helped tremendously. After my first trimester ended and I was feeling better, I was able to take daily walks or go to yoga classes. Going to pre-natal classes has allowed me to surround myself with women who are in the same boat. Moving has allowed me to truly connect with my changing body, and appreciate the craziness that is pregnancy. It’s mind blowing that my body is able to support not just me, but my little one.

Having a support system has been essential. My husband is my rock, and I am so grateful for him. I know it must be silly to see me cry because I’m getting more “pregnant” but he gets it. He reminds me often that my job right now is to grow our baby. My friends have been great too. If you don’t have a dope ass husband or amazing friends, I suggest you get some (easier said than done, obvi).

I have good days, and I have bad days. My anorexia will always be there, and I recognize that. In four months time, my daughter will be here and that is inspiring me to tackle my problems head on. I won’t deny that I have issues. They make me who I am. I will work every damn day to be a great example for my daughter though. I want her to grow up knowing that she is a strong, bad-ass woman. I want her to know that her worth is beyond the scale. In order for her to believe that, I have to believe that too.

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