Wednesday, April 28, 2010

THE SHOCKING FACE OF ANOREXIA & BULIMIA...KARLENE REFLECTS ON HER LIFE & HER REGRETS [UPDATED APRIL 28, 2010]

Karlene anorexia bulimia
Karlene (November 25/08)


UPDATE (April 28, 2010):

"Reflecting on my life...and on my regrets"

(Apr. 18th, 2010 at 5:48 PM)

"I have deleted many of my user pics, as I have come to realize I do NOT want my journal to resemble a "pro anorexia" site. They were pics of a way-too-thin, emactiated body, a reflection of a VERY sick mind! I didn't want girls to see those pictures and say "wow, I wish I looked like that". NO you don't!! It is a very very painful existance! A slow torturous form of suicide.

Some of you may have read my last journal entry about my emergency surgery last month in which they took out most (anywhere from about 16-22 ft;. more than 80%) of my small intestine. It was twisted and dead and I was not expected to survive it. But I did. ((only about 5-10% survive such a catorstrophic illness...and that is for someone who is healthy...not a severely malnourished underweight anorexic with a BMI of under 13!)).

I think maybe it would have been better had I not survived it, bc now I am suffering from daily bouts of severe profuse watery diarrhea, pain, and nausea. And will continue to suffer from complications as a result of such a radical procedure. I use a feeding tube for extra nourishment, but since the small intestine is where you get most of your food's nutrients from, my body is unable to absorb most of my calories I take in and my weight continues to fall.

I have to enter the hospital about once or twice a month. I lay in my hospital bed I now have inside my apartment, day after day, barely able to get up to do even the smallest tasks, while life goes on without me in it. My condition is deteriorating and I fear I will no longer be able to live alone (I do have a home health aide that comes to help take care of me about 4-5 hours a day).

I regret my decision to go on that diet almost 24 years ago, more than you will ever know! I didn't even really consider it a "diet". I wasn't on a quest for thinness (until the monster had a tight grip on me). I just cut back on some things so I could compete better in cross country. I thought it was such a harmless thing to do at the time. But I have that personality (low self esteem, perfectionist, people-pleaser; along with some past childhood traumatic events) that, mixed with intentional weight loss, was a recipe for disaster!!

Yes, I still have that anorexic voice inside my head that punishes me on a daily basis, telling me that I am really not that skinny. But my existance is so increasingly painful, I just want to feel better, and to spend as much time with my family as possible..what little may be left. I hate to see the pained expression on my family's face when they see me wasting away and slowly disappearing before their eyes. I can't imagine how they feel. The pain and guilt of what I have put them through washes over me, stabbing me like a thousand knives every single day, every single night. I have put them thru SO much!! I constantly shower my nieces and nephews with hugs and kisses and continually tell my family I love them, for I do not know how much longer I have on this earth. God has spared me for some reason or another, for I should have died from my disease long ago, especially after this last surgery.

Once your bowel has died, and much of it removed, it is very unlikely you will recover, let alone SURVIVE such a tragic rare event, especially when you are so sick to begin with! I honestly don't know how I survived it and I continue to baffle my doctors. All I I can say is God touched me that night and performed a miracle. There is just no other explaination for it.

I just hope and pray that my family forgives me. And when my life is over, they are able to handle the loss of me. I miss them already! But I will be watching from above (hopefully God will accept me to be with Him in Heaven). I hope my family knows I will forever exist in their hearts and never be far from them. I hope my nieces and nephews remember me as a very loving aunt who absolutely adored them, not as a very ill person who was too weak to play with them. I fear they will forget me.

If you are suffering from an ED (and happen to still be reading this very lengthy entry), please seek help. The sooner the better. PLEASE don't let your illness rob you of life. I know it is easy to think that death may be easier than living thru the HELL of an eating disorder, but not everyone with EDs die peacefully in their sleep. It can be a VERY SLOW AND VERY VERY DRAWN-OUT EXTREMELY PAINFUL death!!! I hope I have somehow, some way, helped at least one person take that road to RECOVERY!!

God Bless You All~
Karlene"


(((Karlene)))

Your poignant and heartfelt posts have helped so many face the truth about their own eating disorders. So many owe you so much, including me. Thank you from the bottom of my heart for having allowed me to share with others your battle...which I pray you will win.


I hope and pray you will continue to confound the medical experts, and regain your health.

Sending much love your way,

Medusa
xoxoxo


UPDATE (October 16, 2009):

"Oh, I just want peace!!!

My nausea is worse than ever. It used to be really bad at night, but now it is ALL the time!! It's like being sea-sick, only 100 times worse!!

Beware, the following is kind of gross: I have been having very watery diarrhea, and vomiting this greenish yellowish stuff that is absolutely disgusting!! Anything I put in my stomach goes nowhere. I look like one of these camodia kids with stick-like arms and legs, and this huge distended gut! I am in absolute misery!!

My doctor put me on some different kind of anti-nausea medicine today and I am supposed to let him know if it works or not by Monday. If not, he wants me to go to the hospital (the bigger one in Topeka) so they can put a PICC line in and give me meds. That is the only way they can get an IV. But I am afraid they (at the hospital) will just brush me off, saying "if you would just eat..." blah, blah, blah. Right, if it were that easy, there would be no such thing as an eating disorder. They don't understand the agony I am in and how it is so much more complicated than that.

I finally got an appointment set up with a GI doc in Topeka (but not until Nov. 2) who specializes in digestive disorders. My gut is so messed up and I have 2 ulcers and a hiatal hernia, plus an esophagus that is so scarred and so messed up from all of the years of purging. They said my esophagus could bleed out and my ulcers too. I am just feeling really badly tonight...everything hurts, and the nausea is beyond agonizing!

As I have said before, the hospital that is more able to treat me is about 35 miles away. I can't take an ambulance bc it would cost a fortune and my family just has too much going on to have them take me, so I am kind of in a rut. Our hospital here is just too small to deal with my complicated case. Plus my last ambulance ride there (which is about a mile away) cost me almost $600 which Medicare says they won't pay for bc they said it was not medically necessary! Are they kidding me?!

I just don't know how much longer I can hold on! I know I am dehydrated and my potassium is low bc I have those painful muscle cramps in the arches of my feet that last for hours!!! I am also having heart palpitations and chest pains.

I don't know what to do or where to go!!! I am so tired!! So weak! Everything is such an effort! It even hurts to walk and stand upright! Most of the time, I have to lean against the wall to steady myself and sit down to keep from fainting. Sometimes it's too late and I find myself on the floor. I've lost count of how many bumps and bruises I've found on my body from falling.

Please pray for my family bc I know it has to be so hard on them to see me this way or to lose me from this disease, although I think we are all preparing ourselves for that day. I am more worried about them than I am myself. The pain I have caused them for over 23 years, I could never ever say how very sorry I am for that! There aren't the words to describe the shame and guilt I feel. I just pray they, and God, forgives me!! I love them all so much. I also love all of you out there who are keeping me in your thoughts and prayers! Thank you so much!!

Mood: confused"


(((Karlene))) I am so, so sorry you're suffering so. I just wish there was something someone could do to take away your constant pain. Sending love and hugs your way...


UPDATE (September 24, 2009):

"Home after another painful hospitalization

Sep. 24th, 2009 at 6:31 PM

Just wanted to let my loyal and avid readers know I just got home from another hospitalization.

I saw it coming and tried putting it off, but the pain and nausea was just too bad. I couldn't even stand up.

So on Tuesday eve. I called 911 and they admitted me, putting in another NG tube (those are so incredibly painful!) up the nose and into the stomach. It took 4 nurses, at least 20 needle sticks, and 2 hours to get a vein for an IV. At one time I had a nurse on each arm trying to get one. Even after all that, they finally got one, but it only lasted a couple of hours and "blew out"! My veins are so scarred and so bad from all the IVs I've had. Plus I was extremely dehydrated. They were going to use an ankle vein, but they had to get drs. orders for that and he said "no."

So I had to endure painful frequent Morphine and Phenegren (anti-nausea med) injections in the butt (which is seriously just wrinkled skin)!! I literally have no fat anywhere, so they had a hard time with that too.

The x-rays showed my bowels had stop working. They didn't really get any gunk sucked out of my gut because they think whatever is in my stomach that won't digest (I don't ingest that much anyway), is trapped further down from the stomach, but not in my bowels yet (there can be stuff in there from weeks, even months!). My doctor told me that if/when this happens again, I should be taken to Stormont Vail in Topeka (about 35 miles from here, but a much bigger hospital to go to for serious cases)where they can put in a PICC line (a kind of surgical procedure where the central line is put in the inside of your upper arm and threaded through just above your heart. ((I live in a small town, so the hospital here doesn't do PICC lines)). That way they can just use my PICC line for IVs, meds, blood draws, and anything else they need, and I wouldn't have to endure HOURS of poking and proding!!

So....that's the latest. Thank you so much to all of you keeping me in your thoughts and prayers and sending me some of the most thoughtful loving caring responses I get. Reading them literally makes my day!! My Love and Appreciation to all!!!

~~Karlene

Mood: weak"


Oh, Karlene, it pains me so to read of your suffering. You have been through so much. Please know you are in my thoughts. Sending hugs and love your way...

~Medusa


UPDATE (September 22, 2009):

Karlene posted the following update in her journal on September 22, 2009:

"I am feeling a little blue tonight (I'm sure most of it is due to my malnutrition and SEVERE insomnia) and in a lot of pain. And incredibly nauseous!!! Sometimes when it gets bad, I throw up (NOT on purpose!) and have dry heaves since I don't have much in my stomach. Plus I have Restless Leg Syndrome and anyone who has experienced this know how very uncomfortable it is!

I am also having terrible, very painful, muscle cramps/spasms in the arches of my feet! My two middle toes curl up and the others curl down! SO PAINFUL! I know it's due to my low potassium.

I don't know how much longer I can hang on. I'm so tired. This disease is so very very cruel!! It takes so much from you and leaves you in PROLONGED, NEVER-ENDING AGONY!! Despite what people may believe, most people with eating disorders don't just die peacefully in their sleep. It's 24/7 HELL!!

I've been dealing with this physical and emotional pain for 23 years!! I have seriously looked death in the face many times. My doctor says I should have died long ago. Being at my worst now, he is truly amazed I am still alive.

My family has had to watch me slowly fade away. I hate what I have done to them!! The guilt and shame I feel is unbearable!! It literally pierces my heart!! I miss my niece and nephews. Though I live close to them, there are so many times I am just too sick or too weak to visit.

I love to hold my 2-month-old nephew and snuggle with him. I love to hold him and just stare at him for hours (many times with tears in my eyes, knowing it is highly possible I won't live to see him--or any of them--grow up). He's starting to smile and coo and it melts my heart when he just stares back at me with that wonderful adorable smile. I usually will then go home (driven by my parents since I don't drive anymore) and take my pain medication (which is beginning to not have very much of an effect anymore).

I hope and pray I don't have to call 911 tonight and have to get that NG tube rammed up my nose, but I am so miserable right now, that may be my only option. I don't know what to do. I've got to close.

Mood: PAIN"

(((Karlene)))


UPDATE (February 7, 2009):


I hadn't heard from Karlene in a long while, and was so worried. I contacted her and, with her permission, am re-posting here the e-mail she sent me on February 7th, 2009:

"I am so very sorry I have been out of touch for so long. I have had an extremely difficult past month. It started with a car accident. I passed out at the wheel. I have absolutely no recollection of the event. I just thank God I didn't hurt anyone else. Apparently I was driving downtown and went into the other lane and hit (and totalled) three parked cars, including my own. Of course they gave me a breathalyzer test bc they thought I was drunk. Anyway it just got worse from there.
I had two bad bouts with intestinal blockage. Having the huge NG tube rammed up my nose was the worst of it. My stomach and insides are so very messed up from all the years of abuse I put it through. I can no longer drive, not only bc my car was totalled, but bc I am just too weak and my dr. won't let me.

I am now going through having terrible sores all over my body: bed sores, blisters, bruises, skin break-downs just from being so thin and having my bones jutting through my skin. It is now even painful for me to even walk! I think I have stress fractures on my heels and bottom of my feet. I have no padding there.

It is very painful for me to sit too and I have this really bad sore on my butt bone and the left underside of my "cheek." It looks terrible. I also have sores inside my mouth and on my tongue. I am literally falling apart. Everything is such a struggle. Anyway, thank you so much for keeping me in your thoughts and prayers. I will try to do better at keeping you up to date.

Love and hugs,
Karlene"



I wept when I read Karlene's e-mail. She has been suffering for so long from the ravages of anorexia. How on earth did this happen to such a lovely, caring, intelligent, thoughtful person?

Karlene wants to share her story as a warning to others that anorexia, bulimia and other eating disorders are deadly, and I am honoured and priviledged that she has allowed me to do that for her.

Thank you from the bottom of my heart, Karlene. Sending much love your way...

~ Medusa

~~~~~~~~~

My post from November 25, 2008:
Karlene anorexia bulimia
Karlene (November 25/08)


Fifteen minutes ago, I checked Karlene's journal to see if she had updated. She has been in hospital since Halloween and I've been so worried about her. When I saw her photo I cried.

Oh, Karlene, I don't know what to say. I am heartbroken for you.

Here is Karlene's post from today (Tuesday, November 25/08):

"Sunken Eyes

I am sorry I have not kept up with this "diary." I'm just so tired and out of beath! My weight is fluctuating between 69 and 70 pounds. Although I think I look gross as in terms of thinness, I want my weight to go lower. That is SICK, I know!! It's not even about looking skinny anymore. It's more about disappearing! I'm consumed with guilt and shame and just want to float away.

I see my doc on the 1st of December. We will talk about the gastric pacemaker. I don't know if he will go for it or not because everyone doesn't think I'll make it through the surgery.

Oh, how I hurt: physically and emotionally!! I sleep ALL the time now and am "out of it" half the time. I do and say things I don't even remember doing or saying.

Thank you for thinking of me and praying for me and my family!! So many of you are so very sweet to me and that means SO MUCH! I love you all~~~~~

Mood: nauseated"

Karlene anorexia bulimia
Karlene (November 10/08)


For those of you who may be unaware, Karlene has asked me to share her story with others who are suffering from anorexia in the hope that they will seek help before it's too late.


Please visit Karlene's journal and send her some love:

Chronic Anorexic


~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~


My post from November 10, 2008:

THE SHOCKING FACE OF ANOREXIA & BULIMIA...KARLENE IS IN HOSPITAL (NOVEMBER 10, 2008)

Karlene with NG tube

Karlene in hospital on November 10, 2008

Karlene on Sept. 28/08 - 72.9 pounds

"This is what happens as a result of purging. I've been wearing partial dentures for over 10 yrs. now. It can happen quickly and is VERY PAINFUL!!"


"76 lbs.--STILL :( BMI of 13.0, whichh is good) STILL NO LOW ENOUGH! I'm so incredibly TIRED, DIZZY, and OUT OF BREATH! Sometimes I really this "this is it, I just hope I don't go to HEll!!!!!!"
~~~~~~~~~~

UPDATE #13
(November 10, 2008)

"Update--Nov. 10, '08

Nov. 10th, 2008 at 6:28 PM

I have been in the hospital for the past couple of weeks. My parents had to take me to the ER Halloween morning. I was having severe stomach pains and couldn't even stand up. Many painful tests were performed and it was concluded that I had some type of intestinal blockage. They stuck a huge NG tube up my nose and got out 2 liters of fluid and gunk from my stomach. I hadn't had a BM in almost 3 weeks (altho I'm not eating much). I was in such awful pain!!

My weight is continuing to fall. I now weigh barely 72 lbs. I cannot even care for myself. My skin is turning an ugly yellowish color. I honestly don't know how I am still alive. My doctors suggested a Gastric Pacemaker be placed in my stomach bc my digestive system is so very messed up. But they are not sure if I would make it thru the surgery.

Thank you to all who are keeping me in your thoughts and prayers. I appreciate it so very much, as does my family!

Mood: cold"

UPDATE #12 (October 23, 2008)

"Update--Oct. 23rd, 2008 at 2:56 PM

I'm still here. How? I don't know. I don't know why God has kept me on earth for this long with this disease.

My physical body is literally disappearing. I feel such guilt and shame. I am sorry to everyone for being such a disappointment. I am sorry for failing to fight and beat this disease. I am sorry I have given up!!

I fought it for 22 yrs. and it has done irreversable damage to me...physically, emotionally, and spiritually. I'm done. I have nothing left.

I don't want people who are fighting this terrible monster to read this and think, "well if she's giving up, if she's not going to get better, then I won't either." You CAN!! Recovery IS possible. I've seen it. I just don't see it for myself. And I'm so very sorry for that!! I'm so very ashamed!!

The physical pain and discomfort from starving and from the malnutrition is still not as bad as the discomfort of leaving my anorexia behind--the terror I would feel. And deep down I know that is CRAZY!! It's been ME for so long, it's who I am.

So many of you have responded to my posts with such love and kindness and I can't tell you how much that means to me!! It touches my heart so much, I can actually "feel" your love.

I've been so nauseous every single day. I don't know if it's my pain meds or what, but I feel like I am sea sick ALL the time!! And when I feel like that, that MONSTER inside my head tells me I am gaining weight, even if I've only had tiny bites of yogurt all day long! I wish so much that there was a miracle drug out there that would just make eating disorders just disappear. They take everything and everyone from you!!

I love all of you out there struggling with this and to those keeping me in your hearts and prayers! I can't thank you enough!! Please take care of yourselves and FIGHT!!"


UPDATE #11 (September 28th, 2008)

"Doctor Day

Sep. 28th, 2008 at 7:25 PM





72.9 lbs. on the doctor's scales with clothes on.

I wish I could see what others see! What is wrong with me?! I feel like I am going crazy! This disease is consuming me and I can't stand it!

I saw my doctor on Friday. He raised my Percocet. I feel sorry for him bc he is so worried about me and doesn't know how else to help. I have yet another kidney infection, but we're not going to treat it, just try and control my pain.

I'm so confused and scared. So many emotions all jumbeled up inside of me. I don't know who I am anymore. I feel like a puppet being controlled by this monster pulling the strings. My body is shutting down not only physically, but emotionally and spiritually as well.

I was with my family this weekend and it was an incredibly uncomfortable weekend!! Just seeing the look on all of their faces and the way they act toward me. My dad looks at me with disgust and that hurts. Even my nieces and nephews stare at me and seem to be afraid of me.

I am so very ashamed and consumed with guilt! What have I done to myself? I've ruined not only my own life, but the lives of those I love so dearly. I'm so very very tired and exhausted and the pain is getting hard to control. God, please forgive me for not being who you made me to be!!

Mood: confused"


Karlene, every time I read one of your updates, my heart breaks a little more. If only you could get the treatment you so desperately need and deserve. ~ Medusa

UPDATE #10
(September 12th and 19th, 2008)


"Update--9/19

Sep. 19th, 2008 at 9:33 PM

As usual, another rough day. I had to take more of my pain meds as soon as they would wear off, thus I slept most of the day.

I've been having bad nightmares that leave me petrified, most of them about my abuser, and sometimes I can feel his presence in my apartment.

I am starting to have a hard time keeping anything down. It literally takes me nearly all day to eat just a 6 oz. carton of yogurt and sips of about 6 oz. of water. Otherwise I get terrible severe stomach pains and sometimes can't keep even that little bit down.

My doctor wants to see me next week to check things out and we will talk about getting me on some pain medicine that is an extended release kind. But I am hesitant. I don't want to feel drugged all day long. I have been feeling really down and very hopeless. My heart is acting so funny, palpitating so badly I briefly pass out. I can usually sit or lie down before I hit the floor. My weight is around 73-74 pounds, about 50 pounds under my normal weight.

I hurt so badly, emotionally and physically. The ED voices in my head haunt me day and night, screaming at me that I am a bad lazy fat slob. God, help me! I am so very tired!

Mood: lonely"

{{{Karlene}}}

~~~~~~~~~~

"Update--9/12

Sep. 12th, 2008 at 3:27 PM

Today has been a rough day. I'm very nauseated and my ulcers are acting up. I've had a little bit of yogurt, a "safe" food for me, but it came right back up (NOT on purpose). So that's all I've had in the last few days. I can't even keep fluids down.

I think I have another kidney infection. I get them so easily now. But I feel it's pointless going to the dr. because he doesn't know what to do for me anymore, except give me pain meds to keep me comfortable, which they do somewhat.

My weight is about 73, but I hardly even look in the mirror anymore. I get too cold standing there in just my undies.

I've been starting to give some of my things away. Like my beloved Spongebob collection I've been giving to my 2 year old niece. She's crazy about him.

Gotta go lie down. Thank you all to are sending me your prayers. They are much appreciated!

Love, Karlene

Mood: nauseated"

~~~~~~~~~~
UPDATE #9 (Friday, September 12, 2008)

"Update--9/2

Hello everybody ~

I'm sorry I have been out of touch. I have read your comments (those who have sent them, and Medusa) and I'm sorry I haven't replied, but I greatly appreciate them all.

I'm hanging in there. It's getting harder and harder to make it through each day. Alot of pain and alot of sleeping. I'm exhausted and out of breath much of the time. Just walking hurts.

I spent the Labor Day weekend with my family and I talked to them about my anorexia, really for the first time in all these years. We cried together and were open and honest with one another. It was hard, but a relief. We have all come to accept my illness and impending death. God touched all of our hearts that night and gave us a sense of peace.

My doctors and therapists are still working on the Hospice thing. It's taking a while, but I think it just may work out.

Thank you to all who are keeping me and my family in their prayers. I appreciate it so much.

Love to all~

Karlene

Mood: tired"

~~~~~~~~~~

UPDATE #8 (Friday, August 22, 2008)

"I'm sorry
Aug. 22nd, 2008 at 8:25 PM

I want to apoligize to all of my readers. I'm so sorry I am such a downer, a loser, a failure, a quiter. Here I am trying to keep you guys fighting this awful disease and I, myself, am giving up. What kind of inspiration is that?

I just want to tell my story in hopes that you guys can see what this awful disease can take away from you. Some of you are in the beginning of your disease and I beg you to get help NOW! The sooner you fight it and live in recovery, the better chances you have of actually having a great happy and healthy future.

After 22 years of being in and out of treatment centers and hospitals, being fed with PEG tubes, NG tubes, fighting infection after infection, fighting painful stomach ulcers and a hiatal hernia, a completely damaged esophagus from years of purging, kidney infections, a failing weakening heart, and failing organs, my body just can't take it anymore. And the pain is excrusiating! 24/7, emotionally and physically.

Tonight has been a rough night. I got up to try to make my way to the restroom and passed out. I could actually feel my heart stop beating and the blood rush from my head and extremeties before it happened. That's not the first time that's happened. I'm just glad I didn't crack open my head.

Anyway, I just hope and pray to you all who are suffering, PLEASE don't give up. Fight while there is still fight inside you. I've never cared enough about myself to fight for ME! Please fight for YOU! You CAN win!! You CAN beat this...before it's too late. My prayers and love to you all!

Mood: drained"

~~~~~~~~~~

UPDATE #7 (Thursday, August 21, 2008)

"God, please take me soon!

Aug. 20th, 2008 at 7:22 PM

I found out that I don't qualify for Hospice. They say I have to have a diagnosis of a disease that will kill me in less than 6 months. I honestly don't believe I have 6 months and neither do my doctors. I need to talk to my physician because I know he will let them know the seriousness of this.

Many times I go to bed not expecting to wake up in the morning. Do they know how much pain I am in? Do they know I am literally wasting away? My parents/family need this hospice thing as much as I do.

My doctor will still continue to supply me with any pain medication I need (at least I hope he will). I sleep most of the day because even sitting up tires me out so. I just took several Percocet along with Xtra strength Tylenol, Xanax and Ativan. I can feel it kicking in, but I still feel I need more. The pain is pretty bad. My stomach is killing me. And when I have a stomach ache, it makes me feel FAT!! Weird I know.

God, I am ready when you are!

Mood: nauseated"

{{{Karlene}}}

~~~~~~~~~~

I have been out of town for the past five days and was only able to just now check Karlene's journal to see how she was doing...

UPDATE #6 (Thursday, August 14, 2008)

"another update

Aug. 14th, 2008 at 4:23 PM

I saw my primary care physician and he is all for the Hospice thing. He is very saddened by it, but honors my wishes. He is more than willing to work with hospice to help them make me as comfortable as possible in my final days.

My digestive system hardly works anymore. I take sips of water and nurse tiny spoonfuls of FF yogurt, but that is all I can do. They couldn't even get a BP on me this morning because it was so low.

My mind is going quickly as I forget most of what I am doing. My heart palpitations are very frequent now. They are worried about me staying alone. My dr. has put me on pain meds as I am in so much pain now. My whole body is eating away at itself.

I am thinking about getting a walker as it is hard to walk standing straight up, let alone walk at all without some assistance. I am still very worried about how I will pay my monthly bills just living off my disability checks. That is stress I don't need right now.

Your love and prayers are still much needed. Please pray for not only my family, but for my financial situation as well. I am so appreciative to you all right now. Here is my mailing address, just in case some of you want to know:
P.O. Box 365, Silver Lake, KS 66539.

"Medusa", I want to thank you as well!!

Love, Karlene

Mood: stressed"

Karlene, my heart is breaking for you. So many are praying for a miracle for you. I hope our prayers are answered.

Much love to you,

Medusa

~~~~~~~~~~

UPDATE #5 (Tuesday, August 12, 2008)

"A plea to my readers

Aug. 12th, 2008 at 10:22 AM

Hi all

I wanted to make a plea to those of you who are kind enough to read my journals. Unfortunately I have been banned from "proanorexia" so I can't post there.

I believe it is very important for the readers to read my latest journals concerning my declining health and what EDs can ultimately lead to.

Can someone please either post this for me or tell them to read my journals. They need to go to my journal site:

http://chronicanorexic.livejournal.com/


My evaluation went well with the hospice people. They now just have to send for my medical records to see if I qualify. Apparently I have to be given only 6 months to live, according to my doctors. Sometimes I don't see myself living even that long.

Although I still see fat spots on me, I can also see that the person staring back at me who looks like a skeleton with skin stretched over it. I'm in so much pain--joint pain, muscle pain, back pain, bone pain, everything hurts. I try to eat a little yogurt. It is getting harder and harder to even swallow.

I keep asking God to take me SOON, not only bc the pain is unbearable, but bc I don't want my parents to see me in a prolonged state of sedation until I slowly pass away. I worry so much about them. But I know God will take care of them.

I often wake up and wonder if this is the day. Bad thing is I have to live off of my disability checks (which is NOTHING) and can't pay some of my bills. But it would be impossible for me to work right now. The stress doesn't help any.

Thank you all!

Mood: blank "

~~~~~

"waiting...as my health declines

Aug. 12th, 2008 at 9:51 AM

My evaluation went well with the hospice people. They now just have to send for my medical records to see if I qualify. Apparently I have to be given only 6 months to live, according to my doctors. Sometimes I don't see myself living even that long.

Although I still see fat spots on me, I can also see that the person staring back at me who looks like a skeleton with skin stretched over it. I'm in so much pain--joint pain, muscle pain, back pain, bone pain, everything hurts. I try to eat a little yogurt. It is getting harder and harder to even swallow.

I keep asking God to take me SOON, not only bc the pain is unbearable, but bc I don't want my parents to see me in a prolonged state of sedation until I slowly pass away. I worry so much about them. But I know God will take care of them.

I often wake up and wonder if this is the day. Bad thing is I have to live off of my disability checks (which is NOTHING) and can't pay some of my bills. But it would be impossible for me to work right now. The stress doesn't help any.

Mood: distressed"

~~~~~~~~~~

UPDATE #4 (Friday, August 8, 2008)






"These pics were taken a day before I entered the hospital, at 73 lbs. "


"Update--not good news

Aug. 6th, 2008 at 11:09 AM

Hi all~

I wanted to let you know that I am now at home from the hospital. I spent two weeks on a feeding tube. My weight is still critically low (upper 70s), and they were just able to get me stable. I am still very weak and not doing very well.

My doctors there have suggested Hospice care for me due to my failing health. I was told my heart is smaller and weaker and my organs are showing signs of failure. Midland Hospice Care (in Topeka) will come to my apartment tomorrow to do an evaluation on me to see if I qualify. When my doctors and therapists talked to them yesterday, it sounds like I will.

I don't know if any of you are aware of what exactly this means, but it is basically saying I am in the end stages of my disease, that I am terminal. They (hospice--which includes drs., nurses, social workers, home health aides, etc.) will care for me in my home on a regular basis until I am no longer able to care for myself. I will then go to a hospice or nursing facility where they will keep me as comfortable as possible until I pass away.

I know all of this sounds grim, but I am trying to accept it as reality, as my doctors and therapists fear the worst. Thank you to everyone who have kept me in your prayers. Your kind words mean a lot to me! Please continue to keep me, but especially my family, in your prayers!

I hope I don't die alone and have my family surrounding me at the end.

Love, Karlene

Mood: gloomy"

~~~~~~~~~~

UPDATE #3 (Monday, July 21, 2008)

"Jul. 21st, 2008 at 6:23 PM

Well, tomorrow's the day. I'm going inpatient for the 15th time! This will be the 8th time at the same hospital/treatment facility. Once again, I'm terrified!

I weigh 73 lbs. and I do NOT want my bones to be covered in FAT!! I love to see them stick out. I see bones I never even knew I had! I can't help but feel proud.

What will I be without it? I don't know who I am without anorexia. It's been with me for 22 yrs. I NEED it! And now they are going to try and take it away from me.

I already know when I get out that I am going to lose the weight they put on me. I'm in terrible pain and I am so very weak, but I don't want to feel better! I need the pain, I deserve the pain. If I feel so bad, it means I am doing something right. I don't want to do this!

Mood: distressed"

~~~~~~~~~~

UPDATE #2 (Monday, July 21, 2008)


"Jul. 17th, 2008 at 5:58 PM


Well it seems I am being admitted into the hospital on Tuesday morning (July 22). I am scared out of my wits! I do NOT want my bones to be covered with FAT! I see and feel bones I never even knew I had! I can't handle them going away! I NEED them! They give me comfort and safety.

Because my BMI is so low (13 something), they will have me on complete bed rest with a person sitting with me 24/7!

I have been passing out and I am purging anything I put in my mouth, even if it is an ounce or two of water, and I am spitting up blood. I want to DIE before I have to go in! I can't handle another hospitalization!

I am on pain medication for my kidney infection (Darvocet with 650 of acetimediphen), so I just took 6 of them, plus 2 mg of Ativan and 4 mg of Xanax. I can feel them kicking in. I'm feeling sick. I just want to sleep and sleep. I know I haven't taken enough to kill me, but maybe it will do some damage. I was in the hospital a few months back for ODing on the same thing and this is exactly how I felt. Only this time I don't have my therapist to MAKE me go to the ER.

Well, I need to stop for now bc I am beginning to see spots before my eyes and feel I'm about to pass out. I will write again before I have to go to the hospital on Tuesday (if I am still alive by then).

Mood: lethargic "

~~~~~~~~~~

"Jul. 12th, 2008 at 9:35 AM

My therapist is threatening to "leave me" for good if I don't go into the hospital! I don't want to go but I don't want to lose her. Nobody understands me like she does.

So I called the hospital and they said they want me to come back in, that my "condition is severe." They are afraid I will die before I get there. I hope I do bc I can't take another forced weight gain! I can't do this again!

ED is beating me up severely for calling them. I am not done losing weight! My weight is still in the low 70s, it's got to get in the 60s!

The admissions lady at the hospital is going to call me Tuesday for my phone assessment. This will be my 7th time there. I DON'T WANT TO DO THIS!! I hope I die soon! I'm so very very tired!!

Mood: distressed"

~~~~~~~~~~

Jul. 10th, 2008 at 9:38 AM

Hi everyone,

I'm sorry I haven't posted in a while to give you an update. My therapist insists on me going back into the hospital. I have become so weak, I barely can get up off the futon. I have had a really bad kidney infection for the past two weeks. I'm in a lot of pain.

I feel sorry for my family bc I can see the pained look on their faces when they see me and give me a hug (as if they may break me). We don't talk about my failing health and anorexia, about my impending death.

I'm sorry everyone!!! I'm such a failure! Here are a couple of new pics. I only take them if I am losing weight. I still see FAT legs!! Love and hugs to all-----"

~~~~~~~~~~

UPDATE #1 (Sunday, June 29, 2008)

This is so tragic it's difficult for me to post. I just checked this woman's journal and found this latest entry which was posted a few hours ago:

" 74 lbs!!!

Jun. 29th, 2008 at 4:32 PM

Seems I have been banned from the site, proanorexia. Oh, well, I will soon be gone............

I have a new user pic (taken this morning). I've lost 2 lbs over the weekend, now down to 74 lbs.

5'4"
HW: 120
LW: 74
CW: 74
GW: 60

My therapist called the hospital I was at in Jan. and Feb. and they are insisting I come back in. They fear for my life. I fear LIFE..period! With my financial situation, I don't know how I could afford to be in the hospital for months. I just want to disappear, shrink away to nothing, die in peace! Give my parents the relief of no longer having to see me like this. My kidneys are failing, by bones hurt, it hurts to even walk...my body's giving out, but it's taking so very long and is so very painful. I'm faddddddiiiiinnnngggg aawwwwaayyy!!!!!!!!

Mood:Dying"

~~~~~

MY ORIGINAL POST FROM JUNE 6/08:

I stumbled upon this woman's journal and pictures moments ago and am heartsick. She may not have long to live. The comments posted under all the pictures are hers.

Her words... posted May 27th, 2008 at 8:55 AM:

"Hi, I am new to this site. I'm 39 yrs. old and have been anorexic for 22 years, but it's been severe for about the last 9-10 years, in and out of NUMEROUS treatment centers and hospitals, being fed through a feeding tube in the nose, a PEG tube surgically placed in my stomach and "fed" that way for over a year! (no food by mouth).

My normal weight @ 5'4" is 120 lbs. (which was about 10 yrs. ago), but now I weigh 77 lbs.

I purge (up to 8 times a day), anything I put in my mouth. I can't stand it! I have pics of myself on my site of my beautiful bones. I am obsessed with taking pics of myself and scrutanizing them (fat spots, etc.).

My therapist won't see me until I go into the hospital. I have lots of medical problems going on, but I can't help wanting to just disappear! I'm not sure I am pro ana, but I want to get thinner and thinner.

I don't recommend getting yourself stuck in this rut. It's pure hell once it takes over your mind and body! PAIN like no other!! Unbelievable PAIN!!!!!!!"

Mood: exhausted"

"A view from above @76 lbs. May '08"


"If you look closely enough, you can see the scars from my PEG tubes"


"76 lbs. "


And her latest post from yesterday, June 7, 2008, at 10:53 a.m:

"I want to thank all of you for your continued support! It helps so much.

I can't even begin to tell you the hell I co thru 24/7, the physical and emotional torture! Why do I do this to myself? I feel I don't deserve to live, to breathe, to take up space on this earth.

I have written a good-bye letter to my family and friends and keep it near my bedside. I want them to know how much I love them and how sorry I am for hurting them so much! The are in their early 70s and are not in good health (my dad recovering from a heart attack and mom having to go get serious back surgery performed). I feel it is all my fault. Me and this stupid MONSTER inside my head! I've just been through so many treatment centers, hospitals, psychiatrists, therapists, specialists, painful procedures, etc. that I have lost all hope of ever getting better!

Stay strong on the RECOVERY path!!

Mood: depressed"
~~~~~~~~~~

And among some very wonderful, supportive comments to this poor woman's posts were some shocking questions asked of her:

Q. "Lol, if could turn just even one off of purging it was well worth posting it."

Her answer: "I hope it shows what purging can do to your teeth! ANd I'v always had nice straight white healthy teetch. Now they are gone and rotting (which is very painful!!). thank you for the post"

Q: "god I wish I could look like you!! oh, and I know this sounds kinda weird, but were you the girl that was in Dr. Phil?? you look Identical"

Her answer: "No, sorry. She was much thinner than me, however I have more serious medical complications and have literally been given a death sentence bc of my failing kidneys"

[NOTE: Aimee Moore was the anorexic/bulimic featured on the Dr. Phil show. You can search my blog for the posts relating to Aimee]

Q: "to tell you the truth i wish i had a death sentence. I hate living like this!! it's utter torture!! do you know how long you have to live?"

Her answer: "no i don't. but i've been told it could be any day. my potassium level is crically low and causings what the drs. call miny heart "attacks." my heart has shrnk to 40% or what it should be. Hon you don't want to go down this road! Live while you can!!"

~~~~~~~~~~

Please, I beg of you, if you are anorexic and/or bulimic, or suffering from any other eating disorder, please seek help immediately!

On the sidebar of my blog are hotline numbers and links to get you started on the road to recovery. Anorexia and bulimia are deadly diseases and take the lives of thousands and thousands of people yearly.

And please remember this woman's warning:

"I don't recommend getting yourself stuck in this rut. It's pure hell once it takes over your mind and body! PAIN like no other!! Unbelievable PAIN!!!!!!!"


Follow on Buzz

28 comments:

MJ said...

I totally teared up reading this. I really hope Karlene has the strength to get better as her pain is something I'm sure nobody could wish on anyone. She's brave and noble for sharing her story and this should hopefully show people there are no good aspects to having an eating disorder.

Not Waving But Drowning said...

Thanks for the update. I used to send notes to Karlene when I had an account with LiveJournal. I deleted my short-lived account because of spyware on my computer.
Karlene is a smart, insightful person who cares a lot about people. It's so sad that she cannot see that she too has inherent worth as a human. Her writing, despite the deprivation of chemicals and nutrients is revealing and could help so many others in the future. The physical pain that she feels is also matched by those horrid messages people with this disease get from within. They don't want to hurt others, but if they eat they feel incredible panic and fear. She's really in a very isolated, lonely place. I would so love for her to know that even total strangers can sense that she is of value and want her well.

Anonymous said...

Karlene,
I am sorry to hear that you have given up - at least that's what it sounds like. Your life has become so empty outside of anorexia that you have nothing else to hold on to. Filling my life with other things is the only way I have been able to stay healthier. Otherwise, I just run back to my comfort zone, although a painful one, which is anorexia. It causes you so much pain, but you feel like there is no way out, so you give up. There is a way out, but that is only to force yourself to have a life outside of anorexia.

cindy said...

What is so sad, and incredibly frustrating, about EDs is that they can be so easily addressed if only the "victims" accepted responsibility. My sister, Ashley, is a case in point.

For years she battled anorexia. My parents, obviously concerned, bent over backwards to help her. She only got worse. When all seemed to fail, and Ashley at 23 years old got down to 89 pounds, my parents took some drastic steps - they kicked her out of the house, closed off her joint saving and checking accounts, took away the car they gave her, and let her fend for herself. My folks literally booted her out into the street.

Guess what? It worked! Once Ashley realized she could no longer milk our family for attention and sympathy she got her act together. Today, Ashley is free of anorexia, works full time as a school teacher, and is a productive member of society. She recently thanked my parents for their "tough" love/shock therapy approach and admitted anorexia is really a choice she made and a hoax that a lot of young girls use to garner attention, manipulate others, and get what they want.

Anorexia is not a disease. It is a lifestyle. The sooner women realize that, they sooner those who allegedly suffer from it will snap out of their self-centered daze.

Brandee said...

well said anonymous. You have to want recovery more than anything and be willing to trade the comfort, and I don't mean anorexia as fun comfort etc, and safety of anorexia fully with the true comfort and safety of recovery. Anorexia is often a slow suicide~ I believe in a sense Karlene does somewhat care about herself if even just a tiny bit or she wouldn't be putting her story out here.
The disease is very powerful. It's time to make recovery more powerful~
((hugs))
Brandee

Melanie said...

Cindy-

I couldn't agree with you more. Anorexia and bulemia are not diseases, disorders, or illnesses. They are choices women make, in large part to get attention, and to distract them from dealing with normal life struggles.

My sister, Deb, also dealt with anorexia. And like your family, after years and lots of money spent on therapy and treating Deb's anorexia as an "illness," my parents finally said "enough" and pushed her out the door. And like your sister Deb miraculously recovered. Funny how a reality check quickly gets these young girls to stop pitying themselves and get a job.

Sites like Medusa and other ED blogs actually hurt women. They convince women they are dealing with a "disease." Calling it a disease disempowers women because it takes responsibility of their shoulders. But anorexia can be cured quickly - by forcing these women to get of their own self-centered realities and focused on life. Medusa, you do a real disservice to women by promoting anorexia as an illness. It is not. It is a decision women make to be the center of attention.

Cancer is a disease. Anorexia is a choice.

Yum said...

Cindy, while I'm happy your sister is okay, your case was a unique one. For many, your parent's type of "tough love" woul dbe a death scentence. There are biological reasons that a person with an ED acts the way they do. It may seem like they're choosing it, yes. But look at it this way: is a schizophrenic to talks to the voices in his head CHOOSING to talk to them? Does he really have a choice?

Anorexia is NOT a lifestyle. The sooner we realize this and stop treating ED patients as bad, foolish, rebellious people, the sooner we'll find ways to prevent and cure EDs.

Anonymous said...

Schizophrenia is completely different. It is a serious mental illness. Anorexia and bulemia are not. They are choices women make.

I'm not saying girls who deal with anorexia are bad. Foolish, perhaps. Self-centered, yes.

We need to stop treating "EDs" as illnesses and tell it like it is - anorexia is a selfish craze that young women get involved in to get attention and to avoid life's daily responsibilities. As I noted before, sites like Medusa, and the sentiments expressed here that EDs are an illness HURT women.

I've talked to many families that struggled like mine did. In many cases, parents finally gave up trying to help their daughters. In nearly every instance, their daughters miraculously recovered once they realized their parents had cut them off. That leads me to believe anorexia is NOT an illness but a choice women make to manipulate others.

It is a real shame so many resources, especially health care resources, are thrown at anorexics. Those resources could be used to battle real diseases like childhood cancer. It seems such a waste to put so much energy into helping a woman who is simply refusing to eat.

Tough love is what is needed for these women, not coddling.

Anuket said...

Oh, dear god. I know how it feels to be in such mental and spiritual anguish to beg for death, but she has that on top of her failing body and the pain that comes with it. I can't even begin to imagine what she is honestly going through. Like MJ said, Karlene is a very strong woman to post her daily trials the way she does..I do hope it helps, at least one person, to see the horrors of ED. I am re-posting it on other forums, so hopefully I can spread the word.

Anuket said...

Wow, anonymous..ED may begin as a selfish act, but, as you can see by what Karlene and others with ED have said, IT BECOMES AN ADDICTION. Just like cutting, like drug abuse, like obesity. Anything can become an addiction, as anyone with a brains knows. But ED is a very, very serious illness, or addiction as I say. You cannot say that it is a selfish act, especially in Karlene's case. You should be able to see, by how she is talking, that she cannot stop herself. She has become lost, as anyone can with anything.

I'm appalled by the way you are acting about this. Schizophrenia is a serious mental illness, yes. ED can become as serious of a mental, and physical illness. I've even seen women with ED develop types of mental disorders extremely close to schizophrenia. OCD is the main I have seen, which is just as horrible - ask any phychiatric doctor.

leslie said...

I actually agree with Cindy and Anonymous. Anorexia is NOT an illness or disease. It is a phase silly girls go through to attract attention.

The medical profession and these girls' families should stop devoted so many resources, time, and money to "treating" these women. Those resources would be far better spent on finding cures and treatments to REAL diseases. Anorexia is a made-up "illness."

My friend's daughter had anorexia. But like Cindy's family, my friend laid down the law with the daughter. As soon as my friend's daughter realized she was going to have her car and cell phone taken away, she straightened up fast.

Anorexics are selfish girls who just want to be the cente of attention.

Brandee said...

wow. So much ignorance when it comes to what an Ed is or isn't. Hope these gals making these comments here are doctors who have researched it but I doubt it based on statements such as it's "silly" or attention seeking.
I am on my own and have been for years. I have paid my way. I grew up in a rough upbringing. No one babied me or coddled me through recovery or the DISEASE of anorexia. I paid for my own medical insurance through my own job that paid for my own hospitalizations, therapy and dietician!
Most anorexics also battle with depression, ocd, anxiety, borderline personality, and bi polar to name a few. You don't choose to be anorexic to have fun with it and gain attention. Actually the more weight you lose the more you tend to cover up unless you start to speak out about it or unless you are pro ana and make a game of it and try to be a "wanna be" anorexic with such stupidity to think it's fun and easy and you can easily snap out of it.
Treatment is long term. recovery is long term but attainable.
If you haven't lived this nightmare, been in treatment, dealt with the ramifications then don't speak on it. Shut your pie hole!!!!
Medusa's sight is very enriching for those focused on RECOVERY and for those who want to learn about the detriment of these DEADLY DISEASES!
With negativity in some of these comments I would only hope these gals don't have daughters, sisters, mothers, friends and treat them this way to contribute to an eating disorder and I pray you don't ever experience the nightmare but then again maybe it would wake you up to REALITY. look it up and get the real definitions and meanings of it before making blanket statments and judgments.
((hugs)) to Medusa and those intelligent enough to really research and learn about these DISEASES and those daring enough to DO Recovery!
Brandee

Medusa said...

(((Brandee)))

Wow. You tell it like it is. Thanks so much for that.

Medusa
xoxo

Pam said...

I gotta agree with a number of posters here that EDs are not an illness or disease. I should know - I became anorexic when I was 16 and battled it until I was 24. Eventually, I realized anorexia was not an illness at all but a desperate and pitiful attempt by me to get attention.

Face it, anorexia is a hoax. I snapped out of it when I finally admitted to myself that I was just using anorexia as an excuse to avoid responsibility and as a very effective way to get everyone focused on me, me, me.

Medusa, you really do hurt young women by posting one excuse after another for girls who are deliberately manipulating others by pretending to have an ED. Your site allows them use anorexia as an "illness" to hide behind. That way they can avoid taking any responsibility for the actions.

As I said, I thought I suffered from an ED. I reality I was just playing a very sad, pathetic game to get attention. Medusa, please provide a REAL service by educating young women at ED. Tell them what a hoax they are. That many girls, including me, have concocted the entire ED myth so we can control others and get our way.

Anorexia is not a sickness. It is a poor excuse girls use to avoid dealing with the realities of life.

Bella said...

I love how people say things like eating disorders are choices. For some people, living lives of low calorie intake are choices. For people like Karlene, it's not a choice. Just like with homosexuality, intelligence, and obesity, all of which the public likes to believe is choice, eating disorders are largely due to genetic predisposition. Epigenetics would say that anorexia nervosa and bulimia are usually "switched on" by extreme stress or emotional anguish.

So, yes, there are those girls out there who milk this for attention, but people with true eating disorders like obese people with binge eating are not. It's a serious condition made worse because there are so many people out there arguing that "It's all in their heads."

Anonymous said...

Hmm.. i don't believe eating disorders are a 'choice' and just a bid for attention, though i do agree its becoming harder to differentiate lately.
I do believe, however, that when you're caught up in the midst of an eating disorder you become very self absorbed. Considering this is advertised as NOT being a 'pro ana' site, those pictures taken by Karlene are as 'pro ana' as they come.

Anonymous said...

I don't really want to be one of 'those' people , but honestly I've been going back and forth for about 10 minutes, and I've decided what the heck, I'm going to say it. Who knows, maybe it WILL help.

Because of years of starving and purge my ability to absorb nutrients was virtually nil. I was never as close to death as Karlene, butI have two young children, and work part-time. I am ALWAYS exhausted, even though my eating disorder has been under control for 3 years, with one setback a year ago that lasted around 5 months. One of my very good girlfriends bought me a gift one day, with the words, "Hey. It can't hurt." It was a bottle of pills made from the moringa tree. She made me watch this discovery doc on youtube about it. I hate supplements and all that crap but honestly I've been desperate for something that will help me. these supplements actually did. They're not a miracle by any means, but they help.
They actually cure malnutrition in about a month. Do the research, there are many scientific studies you can find. They aren't manufactured vitamins, they're food. You can scoff or remove this post if you like, I don't mind, I hate people like me, but I felt I just had to say something so that it didn't bother me. I don't sell them, I don't profit. I've had an eating disorder for 10 years, off and on and I found something that helped with the physical side effects of abusing my body for so long. I advise anyone to only buy them from a site that will guarantee their product and can provide proof of what is actually in it.

If you do put up this post, maybe don't post it under Karlene's, because it's not so much a response to her in particular, I haven't even mentioned her, but all of these stories. It's just that she is so desperately close to death that it reminded me of the children and people in the doc I saw on Discovery. If they can be helped and cured, could she??? How much of her/our disease is worsened by a starving brain???
She seems to have accepted that death is close and inevitable, even maybe look forward to it... but is it really too late? I don't know. Medusa, I don't know how you do it. It's in my personality to solve people's problems, and it's frustrating and heartbreaking to learn I can't. But that's the reason for this rambling post. If I think I can say or do something to help, I have to. Maybe that's the reason for your site, you are the same way? Ugh... I know how this whole thing is going to sound, but I'm going to click publish anyway.

Anonymous said...

Hello everyone,

someone said anorexia was not a desease...I reckon that there are numerous aspects that trigger an eating disorder.

Of course, it is possible that a young girl wants to get attention by doing this. It is also possible that sexual abuse triggered her eating disorder.

I think we should not compare one case to the other: even tough some anorexics really want to recover, they are never going to win the battle against the voice in the head! And that is what makes anorexia a terrible desease: you cant get out, even if you want to.

Thats also what I read in Karlenes lines.

Sophie said...

Wow, I can't believe people saying that ED's aren't "real". I'm suffering from bulimia right now, and I just wanted to leave a little message to Karlene, maybe you could forward it to her in some sort of way Medusa? I've been offered a spot at an ED treatment center, and been going back and forth, over and over again considering wether I should accept it or not. I had a really bad day yesterday and thought it wasn't worth it. That maybe death's the option for me. Today I thought it over again and logged on to your site, which has helped me many times before. It helped me this time too. Reading Karlenes words made me realize I HAVE to fight my way out of this illness. I'm going to treatment, thanks to Karlene. And I would like her to know that she probably saved the life of at least one young girl, me. I'm so thankful for this blog! And also, hopeful for the future, altough it'll be a long path for me to walk until I can enjoy life to it's fullest. I want Karlene to know that I will send her many thoughts on my way out of this. I truly wish her the best she can get now. Love Sophie

Medusa said...

(((Sophie)))

Thanks so much for your lovely comments.

I have emailed Karlene your comment and know that your words will mean so much to her.

And thank you, Sophie, for your sweet words about my blog. You do my heart good.

Sending love and best wishes to you on your recovery journey...

Medusa
xoxoxo

Judi said...

Karlene, I hope that your faith and the strength that you have proved time and time again while fighting this illness can bring you out the otherside of it. You survived your surgery, with such a high risk, it only goes to prove how strong you are. I hope that one day, you will be at peace with yourself.

All my love and wishes x

Anonymous said...

To be honest, I almost never read the lengthy but tragic stories of life after ED.

But today I did. I was especially compelled to read the April 28th update.

I honestly feel that it was God's Will for me to read it. Had I not, I would not be as willing to recover as I am right now.

Thank you, Karlene, for sharing this. And thank you Medusa, for posting this. You two make recovery seem like the possibility that it really is, that I really can earn it if I put even half the same effort I did to fuel my disorder.

<3

Anne said...

Anorexia is all for attention, huh?
That's funny, because when I had it the last thing I wanted was attention. I cut all ties with my family and friends and just wanted to be alone and disappear.
I didn't talk to anyone for months and my life revolved completely around food and my studies at the university.

I would have died hadn't I passed out on a public street because of starvation. I was luckily picked up by the police, taken to a hospital and later to a psychiatric hospital.
(And I btw paid for my own treatment.)

I think anorexia is a lethal addiction that can be triggered by many things. And it's the mental disorder with the highest death rates. Why some people don't take is seriously puzzles me.
It's hard to enjoy all the "attention" when you're, you know, dead.

P.S. Sorry for the possible grammar mistakes! I'm European and English is not my first language.

Medusa said...

Sophie, Karlene just sent me her response to your comment:

"Barb, I cannot thank you enough for forwarding this e-mail to me from Sophie! I am so touched words cannot express! I want to also thank you for putting my journal on your blog. I follow your blog alot and I just hope and pray I can help others get help like Sophie. I wish that for everyone who are plagued by this disease. Please let Sophie know how much her e-mail meant to me!! It really touched my heart. Tell her to hang in there, that she is worth it, and that she CAN recover!! She will be in my thoughts and prayers as she embarks on this difficult journey. I am so very glad that my story is helping others out there. Sophie sounds like such a sweet person and I have faith in her that she can recover. She must remember to never give up hope. She must love herself enough to recover for herself. Thank you again for posting this and letting Sophie know she will be in my heart, thoughts, and prayers!
Love and Hugs,
Karlene"

Sophie said...

I've pasted Karlenes words and saved them on my computer so I'll be able to read them whenever things get rough. They mean the world to me! Lots o' love from Sophie

chronicanorexic said...

Hi Sophie! It's Karlene. I know I don't know you very well, but yet I consider you a friend. I can't tell you how proud I am of you for seeking the help you are so deserving of! And I am touched beyond words that my journals have helped you. Your words have really touched my heart in a way I can't even express. Please know that you will continue to be in my thoughts and prayers, and will always have a place in my heart. And when I leave this earth, I will still be with you. Feel free to e-mail me: ksufan92@yahoo.com
And a word to others who are following my blog, I hope I am able to help you and inspire you to get help. You all deserve it and it IS possible. Thank you also to those who wish me well and think of me often. It really does touch my heart and keeps me going!
Love and Hugs to you, Sophie (& everyone). Please keep in touch! ((and Medusa, thank you for making this possible!!)).
~Karlene

Anonymous said...

So utterly sad...this dreadful mental and physical illness.
Mercifully I personally never have had an ED, but have had an addiction to opiate drugs which is strangely similar in many ways.
But ED's are far, far worse physically.

I once lived at a young person's hostel where there were some people with ED's.
One of them is now thankfully in her mid 50's...she was a teenager when I knew her first.
'
Like an addiction, one always has to be on one's guard against the beast of our addictions.

When I read on 'ana' sites that the girls consider 'ana' a 'person', It reminds me of addicts who consider heroin a 'spirit', a hungry beast that whispers in the ear.
People do have the strength to get well, if they get help in time, but the beast whispers in the ear sometimes..and one always has to be on guard against a 'relapse'.


Karlene must have gone through such hell, bless her. Nausea and pain are the worst physical things people can endure.

Karlene's blog pages are no longer online, so assume that her poor broken body gave up, despite the brightness of her soul.

I am sure her nephews won't forget her..

Wherever Karlene is now, I hope her Spirit is at peace and pain free..
Lots of love,
Cathy

Medusa said...

Cathy, thank you for your lovely and thoughtful comments ❤️