A Letter to My Eating Disorder by an ERC Alumna
Sara, an Eating Recovery Center alumna, sent us a creative writing piece on saying goodbye to her eating disorder. She also shared with us a brief quote about her experience with eating disorder treatment at Eating Recovery Center:
“Eating Recover Center helped my life in so many different ways that I am very fortunate for. If I could pick one thing that Eating Recovery Center taught me, it would definitely be "fearless." Fearless because they gave me the recovery tools to run after my problems, to catch them, and solve the issue. Instead of bashing my body, blaming myself, and hurting myself with my illness, I am able to celebrate my body with kindness and passion. Thank you, Eating Recovery Center for not only saving my life but, for giving me a full life of gratitude. Thank you!”
Dear Eating Disorder,
I want to start off by thanking you. Thank you for being a friend of mine. A best friend. More than that- my other half. For making me feel safe- for helping me go from uncomfortable to comfortable. Thank you for helping me get though the darkest of times. You made the pain stop and I loved you for it. You were there for me all day, every day. If I needed you to burn down an emotion or comfort me in a crabby situation, you always knew, and you were always there. When I spent time with you, nothing else mattered. I didn't have to worry about not being good enough for you.
I never felt crazy about telling you something that was pushing my buttons because in the end, you'd wipe out those furious feelings with numbness. It was awesome. I loved it. I didn't care that you made me disgusting. I didn't care that you'd made me a compulsive liar to my peers. And, I especially didn't care that you wouldn't let me tell anyone about you. I didn't care because you were giving me everything I needed so I did my part and stayed loyal. I knew no one would understand me the way you did. Unfortunately, no one does. That's why you're my other half.
I hate to admit it, but you don't only serve me, but you hurt me. I still want you, but we both know that the time spent with each other comes with a high price. I've tried to break up with you numerous times, don't you remember? I've had enough of you because I am enough. I made the decision to move on and let go of you. This will be a difficult translation, but I am committed to end our abusive relationship.
I may fall for your voices and rely on the temporary numbness you give me at times but, I'm not giving up the fight till I achieve to be more powerful than you. I'm fighting for a life without you. I'm fighting to be free of your demands. I'm fighting because I deserve more than you offer me. I deserve more than the voices shouting in my head when I've made a mistake. I deserve more than falling onto you for a quick escape when I've had a bad day.
I deserve more than stuffing my feelings down, literally with food. I deserve more than killing my insides by following you into the bathroom because you'd whispered into my ear that I had eaten too much. Or because you would whisper that I need to "release" my emotions by a purge. Love-sick, that's all you offered me. And hell, I am valid to feel all emotions; including the bad so I am able to feel the good.
That's right, happiness in which you would never approve me to experience yet, you would manipulate me that I would be my happiest if I engaged in our "bad romance" together. That disturbing cycle you peer-pressure me into doing-- Binge, purge, restrict, repeat. Sure, it satisfied my needs in the moment. But in the long run, you made me feel tired, weak, and unmotivated.
You tell me from time-to-time how I'll be more attractive if I stick by your side. But physically, you actually made my teeth rotten and hair fall out. I know I will be faced with your tempting words trying to capture my heart again, but as I'm learning more about my true and beautiful self, your voice will slowly mute as my strength and ability to choose a full life will heighten.
Sincerely, No longer your victim, Sara