A year ago...

I just realised that tomorrow it will have been a year since I decided to reach out for help to my GP about my eating disorder. I'd just like to write a quick post to show how far I've managed to come since then, and how I'm NEVER going back.
A year ago, I could never have imagined making it through year 11 without being admitted to hospital, or even dying. A year ago, I couldn't even go a day without over-exercising. A year ago, I couldn't even manage a proper meal, let alone takeaways, meals out and eating in social situations.
But now, a year on, I can look back on the old me and see how far I have come. I am so proud of myself for choosing recovery and choosing life. I have a healthier body, although I am not quite weight-restored due to a few slip ups, I don't exercise anywhere near as much as I used to and I have tackled almost all of my fear foods.
With anorexia, you only really have two choices; recovery or death. And although it does make you want to die sometimes, I can reassure you that recovery is great. Food is great. Eating chocolate with your best friends at a sleepover while talking about life is great. Eating with your family to celebrate an occasion is great. Being offered food as a treat in school and actually taking it is great. Going out for a romantic meal with your boyfriend and watching a smile come across his face when you eat what you want, not what anorexia wants, is great. Life is great.
I only intended for this to be a quick post, so I'm going to end it here. But, it's my 16th birthday next week, and I am NOT going to let anorexia ruin it like last year. I will eat and enjoy it at my party. I will accept food presents and actually eat them. I will have a slice (or three) of cake. I will go out for a meal with my family. I will make this year, and every other year of my life, positive, carefree and happy.

The romanticisation of Anorexia

The way some people romanticise anorexia makes me really really angry.

Who really believes that starving your body to the point of death is a nice way to spend your life? Looking at other girls and wishing you were thinner than them, being jealous of their tiny thighs and flat stomach. Even if you do manage to achieve those unhealthy and unimportant goals, you don't ever see that in the mirror because the voice inside your mind doesn't let you.

The people who think that having a mental illness is "tragically beautiful" or that it gives you any superiority over a normal, happy, healthy human being make me sick.

It's not beautiful to ignore your body's cries for nourishment. It's not beautiful to look sick, pale and sullen, with sunken eyes and protruding bones. It's not beautiful to be unable to move or think about anything other than food, calories, weight, exercise or control. It's horrible. It consumes you and it's almost impossible to escape. You push away those closest to you and eventually your only friend is the voice inside your head, the one telling you not to eat, the one telling you you're not good enough, the one telling you don't deserve to be happy.

But you do deserve to be happy. You know what's beautiful? Enjoying food with your loved ones, being spontaneous, running and jumping and dancing, having a real smile on your face and living your life to the full.

In 20 years time it's not going to matter whether you had a thigh gap at the age of 15, or whether you weighed x pounds. It's going to matter how you chose to live your life to the absolute full.

It's beautiful to be happy, healthy and alive.
<<March 2019>>