Sunday, 22 December 2013

Nobody Said It Was Going To Be Easy

No, nobody said it was going to be easy. But nobody said it would be this god damn hard either.
The irony of it is, they were talking about recovery when they told me it wouldn’t be easy, and I’m not pretending anymore; I’m not recovering. I realised that recently, or rather admitted it to myself as reality. There’s no point lying to other people and absolutely no point in lying to myself.

Then I began to think, have I ever actually even been ‘in recovery’? I’ve got years of this illness behind me, god too many years, and they’ve been years of ‘cycles’ of what I have previously called relapses and recovery, but now I am starting to think about it differently. Perhaps, really it has just been a straight line with me at different weights quoting different lines, half believing some of them, appeasing different people, eating more and then less again.

It has been a depressingly long time since all this started. My status and condition has been scrutinised by many people, I’ve been in different hospitals, I’ve been tested and observed by many ‘professionals’, hopped obediently on and off many sets of scales, been suckered by numerous needles, popped an array of pretty pills, munched my way through many a meal plan. My arse has sat on so many different therapists’ chairs its gone numb.
Still, I am not fixed. I am not recovered.

I have realised one thing though....

Seeing other people smile, receiving praise for your struggles, eating more, gaining weight, becoming ‘safe’ or ‘stable’ in the eyes of the medics- this is not recovery.

You know why? Because that is all about other people. So, theoretically I was not entirely wrong when I assumed I was ‘recovering’ before; I was recovering- but only in the eyes and for the benefit of other people.

I have never really recovered for myself. I don’t think I have ever truly believed that to recover and leave anorexia behind would provide me with a better life. I have never believed I could ‘cope’ with life without it. That is what needs to happen before I can honestly begin recovery. Otherwise it will just be another fake veneer, another pretty picture for someone else. Another appeasement which won’t last, can’t last because it’s all just play acting, and the curtains always have to close and the actors will wipe of their makeup and go home at some point.

So here is the lesson I have finally learnt... 

Recovery is what is in your own head. It has NOTHING to do with other people. Recovery is selfish; and that is the way it should be. It should be all about you. Because at the end of the day it is only you who is going to live in the body you are in, in the mind you have for the rest of your life. Other people can help you on your journey, but you have to be so careful that the help, aid and support you accept from them is to further your quest; not theirs.

Recovery is not the time to indulge your inner people pleaser. 


  1. Yes. A billion times yes. All those scales and therapist chairs don't really mean anything unless you know you're doing the right thing for yourself. I'm not sure where you're at, as far as whether you know what you want to do for yourself, or if you want to go from not recovering to "being in recovery," taking that giant-ass-across-continents-leap. I have to admit I haven't been keeping up with your blog as much, but I hope you're doing alright through the holidays, if you celebrate, and you can get through alright. Take care hon.

  2. This is a very thought-provoking post. I agree 100% - recovery is about you, about what's in your head, and no one else. It's like that old saying, 'nothing changes until you do'. Unless you truly want a life without your ED, and you truly believe it can happen, a fake 'recovery' will never stick. It has to be selfish, you have to be putting yourself first.

    When I look at the bigger picture, it's hard to define periods as simply as relapse or recovery, and I don't think there's been a time when I've truly been in recovery. The only time I've gained significant weight was under a section, and it was never going to stick. The last couple of years, I can't classify as relapse or recovery. Mostly I sit around the same weight, occasionally dropping a little, and eat a little more to try and keep myself away from the risk of hospital. So many people see it as recovery because it's not exactly a relapse, but I see it more as waiting in limbo.

    I hope you're okay dear. Take care, and have a Merry Christmas.


  3. We can never recover on anything until we ourselves decide to make that change... it's not easy, it isn't a quick one time fix, it is a long road but never giving up... You write so from the heart Katie <3

    1. Sry launna I think you are a very nice lady, and I do not mean it in a bad way, but what precisely does a person on a DIET know about this horrid illness? You are commenting on every ED blog like you were on the quest for followers. I don’t get this. sry katie, i better leave... wish you all the best.