How do you know if the R word is on the horizon? Recovery.
Though there seemed to be an endless list of consolidating words, advice and potential actions for ways to conquering an eating disorder; there’s one statement, of no particular originality or personal tie to me, which stands most prominent; “One day you’ll just wake up and realise.”
We have probably all at one point in our lives been offered this line of advice; either after a heart wrenching break-up and all your mother has left is simply telling you that he isn’t worth it and you’ll soon realise there’s someone better (though you had already established how smooth rolling his surname was with your forename); or from a badly performed task in something you cared about and appreciating it isn’t really the end of the world and there will be other opportunities in the future.
So there we are; left anxiously waiting for that magic light bulb, epiphany moment, where all our problems will be washed away and forgotten in our sleep, like they never even existed… But let’s get real. Our problems, realistically, are never going to vanish overnight. It’s a dissipating process, where small fragments of the problem are peeled away, one bit at a time, until all you’re then left with are those morning ridiculing thoughts of “Was that seriously all I was worrying about?” and suddenly recognising his surname would have sounded bizarre against your chosen baby names anyway…
For me, it wasn’t so much as literally waking up and realising, it was more waking up to the nonsensical words that were pouring out of my mouth during a recent catch-up with my former university house mates, “I have to deep clean all the utensils I use so there’s no way of any unaccountable food coming into contact with what I eat.” Upon reflection, it’s safe to say that yes, this was crazy, because the motivation wasn’t for general hygiene reasons, (which I am all for!) but more so the absolute fear of eating more calories than which I was allowed, even as far as a rogue breadcrumb on the chopping board left from my mum’s morning toast. Pitifully laughing, as I re-told the lengths to my friends, to which my daily routine had extended to, I grasped just how bad things had gotten, how low I felt I’d sunk, and how little I’d been trying to get over this, if I could even say I had started trying in the first place. This, coupled with my first appointment at a local specialist eating disorder hospital a week on (and maybe a firm kick up the backside from my visiting sister), finally made me feel like some wheels had been set in motion; that I blooming well wanted to get through this, COULD get through this, and that maybe my morning light bulb was flickering on.