Once in a while there is a day that arrives in which you know it’s time to say goodbye to the eating disorder, a day when the illness no longer holds the power to make you believe it’s lies. I am getting there, getting ready to say Good bye, and to take back my soul from whoever it was that I sold it to.
When I was a kid there was a rhyme I used to repeat every night without fail, you know the one where you wish upon a star? When your really young I remember wishing for the most random stuff, a new bike, for someone at school to be friends with me…normal childhood things. When I got to about 12/13 years old the wish changed, and from that point on the only thing I wised for was to be a smaller size, a certain size to begin with. So every time I saw a first star I wished for this, I said I would do anything, that the universe could take anything else from me and I wouldn’t care, that I was willing and ready to do anything it would take to reach x size. For a long time I didn’t, no matter how many destructive behaviours I used, no matter how many meals skipped or dinners purged, I didn’t reach that size which I whole-heartedly thought would be the single thing that would make me happy. In time I reached that size, and then I went past it. I still wasn’t happy. All this energy I had put on that wish, all the hope that I had placed on something so superficial was appearing to be for nothing. But the side of the star fulfilled the wish, in that it took everything from me. My family and friends, my education and work. It took my personality and manipulated it into a piece of me I did not recognise. I was so young and so wrong.
I’m beginning to explore in treatment why I needed my eating disorder. One of the things that keeps coming up is a sense of powerlessness that I’ve been desperate to not only avoid but deny any attachment to myself. I wanted to be the one who held the power, the control, on myself and my environment. The contradiction is that I starved myself so that I could be strong but ended up being weaker than ever. Anorexia turned me into someone perceived to be fragile by the outside world, even though my heart felt like stone, even though adrenaline pulsated through me giving me the energy to do a million and one things. I think it’s because I never stopped, my body did not have to time to just think “Shit! What is she doing to us? We’re going to stop functioning now”. It is only when I did stop that the body caught up, and by God did I know when it had realised what the demands that I had set out. Recovery in comparison is making me feel very fragile on the inside, despite getting stronger on the outside. I have to find a way to be more tolerant to my mind and my body. We have to figure out how we are going to live in the same space, without hurting one another, without exploiting the insecurities and flaws. In all that…there is no room for Anorexia.
I am not yours. You cannot be forgiven. You cannot live in harmony with us. You cannot be trusted. You are not welcome or needed in the place that houses my soul, my heart. My bones are mine, my muscles do not belong to you, my organs are not trophies to be won. I will move on without you. And I will stop missing you and the lies you whispered in the night when no one else was home.