Pictures of another life

I keep seeing old pictures of myself looking much smaller than I am now. I keep seeing pictures of myself, looking miserable. I keep seeing pictures of myself looking exhausted and scared.

I wasn’t one for the camera, especially when I was at my most ill, so the pictures I have, mostly selfies with my pup, are from after my relapse that I had as I left hospital, far from my lowest weight, but it shows me how blind I was to the size I was, the danger I was putting myself in, the life slipping away from me.

I sometimes come across these “2 years ago this week” pictures and I think I could go back there. And I could. I could make the wrong choices. I could neglect myself. I could let myself slip, but what would it lead me to? A life of happiness and health like I have now or a life of misery and ultimately death? I think about taking up less space, being smaller in so many ways, being less, but I know that I am only too much for those who aren’t worth my time, that I command the space I take up, that I deserve it.

Not everyone with anorexia is underweight, and in a sense, I am lucky I was. I’m lucky I got the support I did after hospital. I’m lucky I was taken seriously. I’m lucky that they stepped in before I died. Many have to fight for treatment, when mine was forced upon me. When I was underweight, people understood my suffering. When I had restored it, it was, to those around me, less obvious, less scary, less important. I felt worse initially weight restored than I did at my lowest weight but that’s not to say I should be there.

I keep seeing pictures of myself looking underweight and I think to myself, “thank goodness I don’t look and feel like that anymore”. I think to myself “thank goodness I’m alive”.

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