Insides-Out

by Noise Pollution

I have a fairly unique relationship with the act of throwing up. Is that too much information? I don’t know. If the words “throwing up,” “vomit,” or “puke” are at all descriptive enough on their own to make you feel uncomfortable, then this is not the article for you. Otherwise, I don’t plan on going into detail about the grosser bits of the process, so things should hopefully be fine.

Anyways, me and throwing up go way back. Back when I was young and in Elementary School, puking was a surefire way to get out of class. Be it at home so that I wouldn’t have to go in the first place, or in a Nurse’s Office bathroom so that I could cut out early. I have always been pretty averse to school, or really education of any kind. That’s unfortunate for its own reasons, but hey, that’s the way it was. I had sort of an affinity for the process of throwing up as, short of a few horrible bouts of food poisoning and the flu, it had only done me good growing up.

Then came high school, and with it a slew of new faces, new rules, but most of all, new chemicals. There were new chemicals in my head, sure; that was a part of growing up. Those didn’t even matter that much after a certain point, when I discovered the joys of doing drugs. Between the pills that made eating food at all a difficult prospect (they call it speed, kids) and the pills that made vomiting into a ritual (I’m looking at you, cough medicine) it didn’t take long for throwing up to become a part of my routine. It almost felt comfortable. It felt safe. If I was vomiting, that meant that either my body was expelling a dosage of a drug that was going to kill me otherwise, or it meant that my body was digesting the cough medicine I had downed and was futily trying to prevent the oncoming wave of euphoric nausea that I was praying would overtake me. Either outcome was positive in my eyes.

Then came post-high-school. That’s when I got immeasurably depressed. I was still using, obviously, but I wasn’t going out as often as I was prior to graduation. It just wasn’t an option; I had to work. And work I did, in spite of the fact that my job was horrible and soul-sucking and life-ending. I’d get home, and I’d vomit practically out of exhaustion. My body and mind couldn’t handle being anymore. This didn’t happen every night, but… combined with the one or two nights a week I did go out and lose my head, I was definitely expelling my guts three to four nights a week, sometimes multiple times a night.

Don’t take that the wrong way. I’ve never had an eating disorder. Sure, I’ve always kind of overeaten my whole life, and during this period of my life threw up frequently, but it was never about that. It was never about my body image. That was a side thing at best. At most I considered it a fringe benefit of my lifestyle that I was sickly enough to keep weight off.

Once the big breakup I’ve oft-described happened, I couldn’t keep food down at all. I was overeating, and puking up every meal. Again, not out of some body-image thing, but because I was so depressed that I felt sick. I felt so, so sick, and every time I spilled my guts I felt better for a little while. Like, fifteen minutes. I think puking releases endorphans into your head; something similer to adreneline, if not just straight-up adreneline. When I was kicking my drug habit but desperately needed some sort of chemical dump to happen, puking worked for a little while until I started cutting myself. Cutting myself is a whole lot more efficient and a lot less taxing on my insides and gives me a similar head rush.

I’ve since been working on the whole cutting thing. I’ve gone a about three months without it. But occasionally, due to oversensitivity to the things that begin this process, I will vomit profusely before going to bed and the chemicals that swim through my veins after doing so confuse me, very, very much. Like tonight. I felt so goddamn sick tonight, but everything’s fine now.

Everything is okay now.

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