Diary of an Exercise Addict by Peach Friedman
My rating: 4 of 5 stars
In Diary of an Exercise Addict Peach Friedman excerpts pages of her diary over a seven year span from being "healthy and normal" to slipping into an eating disorder ultimately leading to an exercise bulimia and her struggle to get out of it and back to "normal". Her total honesty frankness make this book easy to read and understand her struggles. Little parts of her daily routine are chipped away over a year time span until she is full blown anorexic and has developed exercise bulimia. Reading her diary you don't realize how bad the disease is until she is faced with it head on and forced to go to counseling and deal with her emotions that have been numbed by the disease. It is amazing to read how easy it is to fall into the pattern of an exercise and eating disorder and how much more time and energy it takes to get out of it. There are parts of this book that every girl can relate to forcing you to face some of the issues that Peach is confronted with as well. Overall, I liked this book and felt that it was a quick read. It turned out to be a little more of a self-help book for me than I had intended, but we all need to work on things in our life so this was hard but nice. I leave you with an excerpt Peach writes when she is well again and her reflecting on the past.
"When I was sick, when I was underweight, when I had made my world so small, when all that mattered was how little I ate and how far I ran, when I lived in my mom’s little white apartment on Little High Street in Charlottesville, I couldn’t remember life before my disorder. I didn’t know it was a disorder; it was a passion. I stood one day in the bathroom at the top of the stairs in Mom’s tidy apartment and I looked at my narrow, white face in the mirror and I touched my bony cheeks. I had just been flipping through photographs from my life with Christopher on a short hike from the car to the coast in Oregon that summer of our Pacific road trip, in 2000. ... So I stood in front of the mirror that day in Mommy’s apartment, several years ago now, and I touched my cheek and thought, Really? I did that? I really did that? What does it feel like to kiss a man? I couldn’t remember. I couldn’t remember the feeling; …so far removed from a life of pleasure and feeling. I didn’t recognize the girl…[now, driving home years later] I take a second look in the [car] mirror at my full, radiant cheeks, and I touch them…I can’t feel, I can’t bring back, I can’t conjure the sunken white face of the girl who didn’t eat, the girl who ran too far, the girl who wouldn’t stop running until she’d injured joints in every corner of her body and couldn’t walk up the stairs. I don’t relate anymore.”