I wrote a post a while back about identity and how uncertainty of identity can play a part in developing an eating disorder.
At the momment I feel in a strange place in recovery.I feel like the hardest/worst is behind me and now it’s just figuring out how to accept myself as I am without the eating disorder.
I put so much of my identity and sense of ok-Ness down to what the number on the scale says and now that my weight is higher than I would have ever liked it to be I feel a bit lost.I feel like I have lost anorexia but I haven’t exactly found myself either.I hate my weight creeping up but at the same time I don’t feel bothered enough to do anything about it.It’s just not worth it.I know everyone has their set weight point but it’s hard to have faith that your body will find where it wants to be and stay there.Being honnest I hopped to maintain at the minimum healthy bmi but I’ve kind of accepted thats not the case anymore.Which is pretty terrifying at times.It’s Irational but to me the numbers represent control,safety,being ok,good enough,identity e.t.c I genuinely am not that bothered about looks which is such a misconception people have of ed sufferes.
Maybe it’s just a journey where the further you get from anorexia then bit by bit you find pieces of yourself again that are not weight, food,related.
And still I would not say out loud to someone I ever had anorexia.Because still so much of the time I feel like a complete fake.If I really did then eating and gaining weight wouldn’t have happened that quickly or easily.I mean it wasn’t easy but it wasn’t forced is what I mean.I don’t even know what I am talking about to be honnest.
Ithink having an eating disorder and recovery changes you as a person.I am much more mature,understanding,non judgemental of others and empathetic I hope.In a way I could thank my eating disorder as there are so many things I wouldn’t have experienced or people I would have met if it wasn’t for the struggle.Because I see similarities between the eating disorder and other people’s struggles like not being good enough,not being able to cope e.t.c it can help you to understand what other people are going through because you have real empathy having had those sort of struggles yourself.
When you develop an ED in teenage years which is a huge time of change and finding yourself it can be even harder to figure out who you are when you recover and what your role is as a young adult.
Sometimes I think the eating disorder is a way of numbing out your identity.You become so consumed by the illness it doesn’t leave space for figuring out who you are.You don’t need to think about things you don’t want to.You don’t need to be anything else than what the eating disorder dictates to you.You don’t need to wonder do I like him or her?What are my ambitions/goals?What will I do in the future?How can you think about the future and life changing decisions when you can’t even decide what to have for your next meal or wether to even have it.In that sense having an ED can be a relief.Until you try to find an identity outside of the ED and realise how much of your time and life it has taken up.
If anyone had listened to tom odell song “till I lost” that’s kind of how it can feel when you let go of the ED.
“I didn’t feel your love until I lost”is one of the lyrics. Kind of like you don’t realise how much of you is attached to the ED until you try and recover.
I don’t even know what the point of this post is,I guess I am feeling some ED nostalgia. Like is that even a thing?It’s so confusing how we can struggle to let go of something so destructive to not only the individual but those around them.Like even now when I am I’d say 98% ok in terms of eating,eat what I like,when I like even if that’s dinner at 1 am due to work and thrn going out drinking.and I am flexible and free and don’t engage in ED behaiviour I still can’t shake the ED completely. Maybe it takes time,I don’t know.