No matter how ‘recovered’ you are from an eating disorder, it may try and call you back.
It could be a scream or it could be a whisper, but chances are it will appear at some point. Here are some things I’d like you (and me!) to remember if and when it beckons.
You weren’t happier when you were thinner.
You weren’t. I promise you you weren’t. I know you might think that things were better, but please remember all the bad things that anorexia blanks from your memory. You were cold, you were exhausted, you were sad. You were always, always anxious. You were never happy because you never satisfied what it wanted, no matter how hard you tried.
Your world will shrink with your body.
Yes, you might take up less space. But your world will also become smaller. Remember all the social events you had to decline because they were centred around food? Remember the times you chose to stay inside your house because your body image was too fractured to allow other people to see you? Remember all those holidays you missed and experiences you cancelled? Yes, you were smaller. But at what cost?
Your weight is not your worth.
There is so much more to you than your weight. Your many beautiful qualities you have that make you who you are. Your life experiences that have come together to turn you into the person you have become. Your good qualities and your bad ones. You are an amazing, complex being, merely housed in the shell that is your body. It’s what’s inside that makes you special. You are enough, just as you are.
People love you regardless of your size.
The people who love you don’t care about your weight. They are happier when you are happier. They care about your health, and your wellbeing, and how painful it is watching you slowly starve yourself to death. They see you for everything that you are as a person, and not what you look like. Try and see yourself through their eyes.
You deserve a life free from your eating disorder.
Nobody deserves a life trapped by an eating disorder; I wouldn’t wish it on my worst enemy. There is a big wide world out there full of amazing learning opportunities and life experiences and food! You are entitled to enjoy life as much as the next person. Please don’t let your eating disorder steal any more years from you than it already has. You won’t ever get those years back.
Please don’t let it trick you into only remembering the feelings of euphoria as the scales dropped, and not the constant feelings of pain, anxiety and emptiness, or the hurt it caused other people, or the things it stole from you.
Don’t let it take any more from you than it already has. You’ve got this.