Today I’m breaking my radio silence about my recovery.
It’s a bitter-sweet post, there’s going to be good and bad. I don’t really want to share the bad, I don’t want to tell you all about my failures but I think I owe it to you guys. What type of role model would I be if I only showed the good side of thing? So, you’ll get to hear it all today, what’s apprehensive for me to be writing about.
So here we go.
The truth guys, the eating disorder has let go of me but I haven’t let go of it.
I can’t let anorexia go.
These past few weeks has been incredible. I’ve been closer to God than ever before, I’ve been a little prayer warrior, I’ve been reading God’s word. We’ve kicked ED backside (by we I mean God and myself, but mainly God). I have never felt so at peace with my body and closer to God.
All of this change was triggered by a photo.
I’d brought a new outfit, my first pair of dungarees, I was loving the look of it and even felt good enough to send it to my boyfriend to show him how it looked. (Watch this space because I think this is the start of a obsessionn with dungarees, mark my words.) But after that, the photo didn’t really get a second glance until later that night.
One thing I should probably say now is that I suffer from body dysmorphia and most people with anorexia do. It just happens that I get it horrendously. I don’t know what my body truly looks like, when I look into the mirror I see fat and that’s the only thing I can see. I’m not talking a healthy amount of fat either, I’m talking morbidly obese level of fat.
As it’s so rare for me to see myself without the eyes of my body dysmorphia. I often think that everyone around me is lying about my weight and get upset about it. But I have been receiving help with it though, and through the course of many counseling sessions I can say that I’m slowly getting there.
So it’s later on in the day and I’m in my bed scrolling through photos on my phone, as you do, and I clicked on that photo.
I’m not sure if it was the counseling that did it or God opened my eyes (it was probably both) but for the first time since I developed my eating disorder, I saw myself without the body dysmorphia.
I saw myself for the first time in two years and I was horrified.
I’ve got it under control.
That’s my go to thought if people who know I’ve got an ED ask me about my weight, especially my mum and my peers.
I have it under control, I am ok.
I hadn’t though and I wasn’t ok, I just couldn’t see that. Eating disorders are very good at blinding you and setting you on a path of denial. In my head I had an ‘ideal’ body, a picture of what my body would look like one day. It was the end goal and to be honest, it wasn’t that bad. Also in my head was also like a restricted zone, a level of weight loss that I was not going to allow myself to go into because I had it under control. I was never going to get that thin
Soon though, those two pictures in my head got confused and switched places. I was now aiming for the body of bones and not the healthy weight. I was never going to get that fat.
But it was ok, I had it under control.
So when I looked at the photo of me that night and saw how thin my body was, I broke. It was the first time I realised that I didn’t have it under control. Cutting a very long and painful story short, it was my boyfriend who helped me out of my distressed state and accepting that the person in the photo was me and that I really should be going to God about it. That marked the begining of my recovery.
At the point of you reading this, I will have been in recovery for exactly a month.
I’ve come on leaps and bounds this month and God’s been the driving force of it. I really had to get down on my knees and ask for Gods forgiveness and ask him to enter my life again. Without his strength, I wouldn’t have gotten through this month.
The eating disorder has released me.
There have been moments when I am living without it what is the most freeing and amazing thing going. It’s not everyday, but I have experienced brief moments outside of anorexia. I’m still in a battle, but there have been breaks.
The eating disorder is no longer my greatest stumbling block, I am.
The eating disorder has released me, but I haven’t release it. I know it sounds stupid and insane but I don’t know how to let it go. Part of me still wants the pain, I still want to be sick and I want to hurt.
The volumes of emotions I’m feeling right now is insane. I want to find someone out there who once suffered with an ED and ask if it’s normal. Is not wanting to let anorexia go normal?
I’m upset with myself, I’m angry, I’m ashamed and I don’t know what to do. I can’t move on from it. One hand is clinging on to God and the other is desperately trying to hold on to the eating disorder.
I can’t get the image out of my head of God holding my hand, embracing me, stroking my head whispering tender word in my ear to let go. The ED is just looking at me smugly with my one arm clutching onto it’s cloths knowing that even though it’s making no attempt to hold on to me, it still has control over my life.
I’m torn. I just want God, but I’m so scared to let the ED go. It’s no longer holding onto me, I’m holding on it.
Yes, I will let go of it. But I don’t know how to live without it anymore.
This is my favourite quote right now and man it’s relevant.
Let go and let God.
Even though I’ve been recovering for a month, this week has knocked me silly. I understand now that it’s because I’ve taken my eyes off God. The second I stopped going to him for everything, the second I slipped up.
So I’m going back to God.
Maybe when it comes to letting things go, there isn’t this almighty breakthrough you have that signifies the end.
It’s not about knowing when to let go and waiting for a mountain top moment, it’s about stopping the excuses and reason and just simply letting it go. It’s having the faith in God that God is going to be there every step of the way.
God isn’t going to force anything on me, he’s not going to rip the ED out of my hands because it’ll ultimately drive me away from him. I’m not healed so if I lost the ED without a choice in the matter I’d just move on to the next best self destructive thing I can find.
The only thing that is going to work is if I let the eating disorder go.
That is a terrifying thought. The ED has become my identity, my control and my comfort.
But I’m going to have to let it go.
There isn’t room in my life for anorexia and God.
So I chose God.
One thing that this month has taught me is that it’s not a one time thing. I’ve had to go to God on several occasions and ask him for help, I have to keep going to God and giving my fears, anger and pain to him. It’s the reason I’ve found these past few days so difficult, I stopped going to God when I really needed to. I’m not naive enough to think that I’m going to let go of the ED and it’s all done and dusted, because it’s not. I might spend the next few months spending every moment letting go of my ED because I keep picking it up time and time again and that’s OK! Recovery isn’t linear and I’m not expecting that.
But if I keep going to God and letting the ED go, I’m going to be ok.