Chapter 1: Just 1 time


Just 1 time…

I remember it like it was yesterday – the moment I stood in the bathroom, dialoging with myself – weighing the pros and cons (pardon the pun)…

I had recently been told to take 2 weeks off from my regular workout regime to heal from an injury, and I remember being flooded with fear of weight gain. This was new to me, up to this point, I had never felt my goal was to be  ‘thin’,  I wanted to be strong… but something shifted, I felt the need to be thin.

I began to rationalize the initial purge – needing a way to balance my output with my input in order to maintain my level of fitness while I healed. I convinced myself it would be “just 1 time”

“I could stop whenever I wanted”

4 months went by, and what began as a 1 time event, had become a post food ritual I practiced multiple times a day.

It didn’t matter what I ate or how much I worked out. I had become addicted to purging in such a way that it infiltrated into every aspect of my life. It began to impact my relationships, my routines, and my decision making. I had masked my purging by significantly altering my diet, intensifying my exercise regime, and making a conscious decision to ISOLATE MYSELF.  

People I hadn’t seen in a while would comment on how my appearance had changed. I could sometimes hear the concern in their voice, but that didn’t matter. It was fuel to my fire.

I began to link my value and my worth to my new definition of beauty, BEING THIN.

Although I was ‘content’ with how I was looking, I found myself setting ‘weight goals’, but never being satisfied when I managed to reach them — I could always drop more weight, I could always be smaller.

I was ridden with shame and guilt for what I was doing to myself. Shame and guilt were the wheel house to my perpetual cycle of self harm.

Purging felt freeing. Admitting this is hard, but it is the truth – purging was my release. 

My rational side knew the harm I was doing. I knew that if any friend, student, or stranger came to me mirroring my situation, I would hug them and show them their true beauty is WHO they are. I was not following my own belief system. 

Why couldn’t I see myself in the same light? And show myself that same kindness and understanding?

Just 1 time I told myself… Just 1 time.



About sedalzell

Educator & Explorer
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