The guest post this week has been written by blogger Catharine from Time to Talk Eating Disorders. Catharine has written about her experience with anorexia and the daunting road to recovery. Her blog is thoughtful and inspiring, as is her journey in recovery.
If you are suffering with or have suffered from an eating disorder please take care when reading this post in case the content is difficult for you.
So Seeds in the Wasteland is temporarily becoming home to some guest posts, this one included, and that’s pretty nice isn’t it?
You’ll have seen in her bio part of her blog, she has the definition of wasteland; An area that is devastated, as by flood, storm, or war.
That definition is something I’m sure any person who has suffered from mental illness can relate to. For me, it was anorexia that grabbed a hold of my life. This grew quickly into depression as well, and then tore my life into pieces. “An area that is devastated”, that’s all I was for a long time. I first experienced the hell of mental illness at 18, I’m now 26 and believe I only really got anywhere near “recovery” last year. But recovery is an awful, horrible road.
Something inside me still can’t heal. I force myself to eat the most “normal” meals I can and with every bite I disgust myself. What even is “normal”?
Eight years I have had this thing living inside me.
I asked my therapist how can I know whether what my voice tells me is real or not? I put on a little bit of weight so Beelzebub (my eating disorder) tries to force me to lose it.
My therapist asked was I happier when I was skin and bones with nothing much left in my life, when I lost friends and my career prospects. Maybe I was? Beelzebub tells me nothing mattered except being the lowest weight possible. How do you ignore that?
We are all looking for something, and accepting this fact is a part of recovery. When dealing with a mental illness, you have to learn to accept things about yourself that you probably don’t like, and this can be really hard.
But it’s an important step.
Accepting whatever it is you’re so desperately searching for will allow you to ask yourself if that thing is really worth it. For me, I used to be constantly looking to be as thin as I possibly could. Accepting this and then reasoning with myself about what it is worth allowed me to move into recovery, because it allowed me to list why being at thin as possibly is not worth losing your life for.
But I’m still looking.
Now I’m looking constantly for something to inspire all of the self-hatred and loathing out of me. Maybe there is one thing that we are all looking for in unison, something to heal us.