LINDSEY HALL: Eating disorders, you don’t
just wake up and have one. You don’t just wake up and you start starving yourself. No
one’s body wants to be starving. I stopped really knowing what hunger was. LINDSEY HALL: February 27th, 2007: I am starting
a diet today for real just until after Germany. I need to be thin there. I feel like I am
huge all the time. COMM: For the past 12 years, 28-year-old, Lindsey has suffered from a number of different eating disorders. LINDSEY HALL: My relationship with food has
always been tumultuous. ‘I think losing 5 lbs would be ideal. This morning I ate
a cup of fruit and half a bagel. But made sure to leave a little bit of both.‘ It
was a big joke with my family that Lindsey only eats about 12 items or 14 items of food.
‘I am going to go workout too and burn at least 250 calories.’  As I got older,
yeah, that was when my relationship with food really changed. It was in high school. So
there I am where I know I am counting calories. I definitely wasn’t the smartest girl in
the class. I wasn’t the prettiest girl in the class. I wasn’t the sportiest but I
was small. When I hit puberty suddenly I wasn’t the smallest person in the class. I knew I
always wanted to be under a 100lbs. Always. ‘My stomach has been freaking out a lot
lately. I hate eating.’ So weird seeing all that. When I was 16 it was the first time
I threw up intentionally. I remember getting up and going to the bathroom and made myself
puke. And I thought, ‘Oh, my god! That was so easy.’ LINDSEY HALL: I kept binge eating a secret.
I would just find sneaky ways of hiding food all over the house. I always binged cereal.
That was my thing. Fruity cereal, sugary cereal, it didn’t matter. I would binge until it
hurt and then I go puke it up and that was my life. COMM: At college, Lindsey’s eating disorders
changed further after she lost her best friend and turned to exercise and alcohol for solace. LINDSEY HALL: I would exercise until; I would
exercise until I was lightheaded. I would go once, twice, three times a day because
I was losing calories that made me feel good about myself but also completely blocking
out dealing with my best friend’s death. And sometimes I would blackout. LINDSEY HALL: I drank wine, lot of wine to
coat my stomach. I never wanted to be really drunk. I just didn’t want to feel hunger.
And, so, for me, I drank one glass of wine. It took that edge off, be able to go out and
function, socially be around food without feeling like I needed to eat. Drunkorexia
is not a medical term. I think people get confused and think that Drunkorexia is like
this, you know, clinician’s term. But it’s not. COMML Throughout this time, Lindsey still tried to hide her eating disorder from all her friends and family. KIMBERLYN DYER: Hey, do you want to drink
wine? LINDSEY HALL: Nope. KIMBERLYN DYER: Okay! KIMBERLYN DYER: Let’s go outside. KIMBERLYN DYER: We went to dinner. I knew
you had run a half marathon that day and you ordered a kale salad and they put Parmesan
cheese on it and you were like, really annoyed because you thought they had put too much
cheese on it. I know for a fact that you ran like 13 miles that day and I saw that you
were just like not eating. LINDSEY HALL: My lowest weight was at age
23 and I weighed 88 lbs. LINDSEY HALL: I told my parents about my eating disorder. LINDSEY HALL: Once I told them they started noticing it. LINDSEY HALL: And I didn’t realise that
my parents were watching me so closely. You know I had gotten away with my eating disorder
for 7 years at that point. JOANNA HALL: We found the boxes of cereal GARY HALL: I opened the cabinet they were
gone. I saw them in a recycle bin. I said, ‘There’s two boxes of cereals that have
been eaten here in the last 24 hours.’ GARY HALL: Then that was just it. It all kind
of came together. LINDSEY HALL: Thank you, mom. JOANNA HALL: You’re welcome. JOANNA HALL: Well, I was devastated. You know, you beat yourself up, you think, ‘How come I didn’t see it?’ LINDSEY HALL: This was right before I went
to treatment. So this was September 8th, 2013 and I wrote and I can’t, I really don’t
even remember where I was when I wrote this. But I wrote, ‘I am so unhappy living like
this. I absolutely can’t continue to live this way. I can’t. I am going to lose everything.’ COMM: Lindsey finally went into rehab at 23
years old. LINDSEY HALL: This morning I am headed to
Renfrew Treatment Centre, the place where I went for eating disorder treatments. Been
the first time in 4 years since I left treatment but I am going back. LINDSEY HALL: I look at Renfrew as place of
safety I guess. In my recovery I have learned a lot, part of my eating disorder was always
wanting to be validated and wanting to be like loved. I wanted everyone to like me.
When I made my bigger transformation it was actually having to be, it was actually having
to come clean and be honest about more how I was feeling and instead of just trying to
manipulate all the situations around me. LINDSEY HALL: I had to figure out who I was again. I had to figure out who I was without this eating disorder
because I had given up everything. KIERSTEN RAPSTINE: I hear you are doing really
well. LINDSEY HALL: Yeah, thank you! Yeah, thank you! KIERSTEN RAPSTINE: Alright, this is where
the magic happens. LINDSEY HALL: I remember this room very, very
much. Have any of the guidelines changed? KIERSTEN RAPSTINE: Not really. I mean we are
still trying to encourage people to move away from the diet mentality and not count calories.
What do you remember about the food? LINDSEY HALL: Remember there’s was lot of
bagels and a lot of bananas. Waffle day! Oh, god! Waffle day. Waffle and Pancake Day. COMM: Lindsey now blogs about her experiences
with eating disorders. LINDSEY HALL: I wanted somebody to tell me
exactly what it was going to be like. Like, I wanted to hear the nitty-gritty. I started
all this blogging because I wanted to give that back. I wanted it to be somewhere on
the internet for somebody that was like me two weeks prior to going to treatment. I have
literally been there. LINDSEY HALL: 2 days ago, this girl reached
out to me and said, ‘I hit rock bottom the other night.’ And this chick is off to rehab
tomorrow. ‘You are an incredible writer. Thank you for your honest accounts and advocacy.
You are giving me help.’ So it’s pretty cool, feels good. JOANNA HALL: I think a lot of people have
been helped by her and so I am, I am very proud of her. LINDSEY HALL: As I look back at my journey,
one of the biggest things I have taken away from it is that it’s okay to not be okay. GARY HALL: My biggest takeaway is just how
proud I am of her. She took, you know, one of the biggest lemons life could throw at
you. She made lemonade out of it. LINDSEY HALL: I read these diaries and it
helps give me good perspective on where I am now. I don’t even recognise that girl anymore, really.

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