The triathlete Pilar Hidalgo had to leave the level sport due to some serious heart problems. Now on his website he tells us that he has a serious disease called Unspecified Eating Disorder.
This is the article that Pilar has written:
Up to here my suffering came, 16 years is enough. So many years stumbling around, letting myself be carried away by everything and everyone and ending my life and happiness. And the shame is over... for thinking what people might believe (people ignorant of a problem or lack of knowledge of this disease). 16 years dragging a "very serious and serious" disease called Unspecified Eating Disorder, neither bulimia nor anorexia. Simply at the age of 16, because of the rejection of a boy and not tolerating that great frustration experienced, it all started.
From then on, I sheltered myself in food from every feeling of disappointment, frustration, anger, wanting to please everyone, wanting to please everyone at minute one... I ate insatiably (as well as the donkey I was to compete or give it everything, that's how binge eating was...) and vomit it up to clear that feeling of bad feeling, frustration, disappointment... etc, empty that feeling. Never in 16 years have I vomited a “normal” meal, I eat well and in quantity, if you ask the friendly chefs at La Blume… It has been 16 years totally mechanized, going through thousands of different stages of the disease. No one imagines what an episode of these is like, bleeding, hurting myself, paying for it with those who love me the most, blaming those who love me the most, circulatory, digestive, hormonal damage... but the most serious psychological damage.
Going through more than eight psychiatrists, psychologists, therapists... stumbling and wasting my health, earning a defibrillator in my heart... and the consequences that come from all the damage and physical and psychological abuse that I am doing to myself. Perhaps so much strength has harmed me in prolonging this for so long, seeing myself always strong and self-sufficient for everything and of course, to believe that I will overcome this. Different therapists until this year, Juanjo Bringué helped me make this hard decision. Enter and isolate myself from everything and everyone in Itacat (I don't know for how long). Everything I have achieved has been due to my character, impulsiveness, I wanted to achieve all my purposes and goals at all costs, at any price.
Since I was born with a cardiac arrest, I needed more attention, affection and protection than normal, it has been this overprotection that is dragging me through all this. Not tolerating frustration, someone saying no to me, someone pouting me (why?), Someone feeling bad about something I said, what will that person think of me ... (read people's thoughts, when today, I have realized that neither I nor anyone can guess the thoughts of others).
So 16 years of pain and suffering that only I and, in part, Sebastien and Juanjo know how I have suffered and suffer. I have always expressed joy and happiness because it is my character, I never talked about this or how I felt with anyone. I kept everything and I suffered... I remember four years ago, when I told this to my best friend Raul, he didn't believe it. "I eat? Impossible? You're always laughing, happy, aware of everything and everyone”… but that has been my big mistake, not looking after myself or perhaps really seeing what was happening to me.
Many things lived in 16 years, many and even today I wonder how I'm still here in this world with all the unimaginable damage I'm doing to myself. This is surely why on September 6, 2009 the cardiologists told me: "You have great strength... that's why you have endured this tachycardia for so long." But that's it! My strength is over, and I want to be 31 years old, live and enjoy each day as I deserve. I'm coming in next week, I don't know when I'll leave, I'll be incommunicado from everything, at least two months, and leave what is now more exciting and more fulfilling (I hope temporarily) training Tri Prat.
What I will not leave is MAKO, Sebastien will help me for the duration of the admission. And then, God willing, with the help of Itacat and my desire to heal myself, I will return with everything (if I was already smiling before, imagine if I come out of this well ...). This well, which I have been covering with races, training, now I please this one, now this one. I have doubts that after 16 years, I can relearn to manage my emotions in another way, but I have no other choice, or it is now or never. I could be writing pages and pages of everything I have lived and suffered, from each stage of my illness.
Simply because my life is in danger, nor go to the ICU and cause a scar on the right ventricle of my heart, along with all the metabolic, mental, digestive, and neuronal alterations that this serious disease (that few people understand) has caused. Valid to say: "Pili, stop!", until today. This all sounds like a disease of addiction, and it is 16 years of managing my entire life like this I have made it an addiction. That is why I want to have the opportunity to tell the girls (who I know of and have seen in my sport with the same problem) and those who read this, not to think it is nonsense and to drop everything, everything to solve it, because it will deserve the pain.
Do not have the confidence that I have had in so many years, that I would go out alone. I know it will not be easy at all, but I hope I can be victorious in the toughest race that I will finally face. And put all my strength, which is becoming less and less, in this. I hope I can redirect my life, my things, my dreams soon and be able to see you (although surely with the shame, which I have had during all these years to tell about it). I really want to write: I am cured ... not like the six months after the scare of the heart, which was only fear that made this spiral stop, when I believed that I had already cured.
I hope that with the help of the professionals who will take me and my great family, I will end up overcoming this difficult and complicated disease. Friends, colleagues, acquaintances, I want to enjoy as we all deserve and not end my life and those of my loved ones, with so much suffering, which no one can imagine.
See you soon I hope…
Pilar Hidalgo is a professional ex-triathlete