A few weeks ago at IOP, A allowed us to forego process group and instead we had a very extended game of “Recovery Jenga.” It’s essentially normal Jenga, but all of the pieces have a question written on the bottom of them. These had a huge range: coping skills, one way you can take care of yourself this week, list positive traits, what is something for/against recovery you’ve done with week, triggers, and some fun ones thrown in. It was more of a light-hearted get to know you, until this question came up. Both the question and answer immediately changed the tone completely (which makes sense considering this is what EDs do as well).
This question was given to A,who is recovered from an eating disorder herself. From this viewpoint she can look back on all Ed did to her and how we are affected as well. Her explanation was that if she was still stuck in her eating disorder there was no way she’d make it ten more years. Hearing that was sobering. This isn’t some doctor or dietitian who has only worked with eating disorders. Sure, they could tell you statistics and whatnot, but they haven’t been there. A has and that makes this answer more impactful to me.
Continuing this life if relapse and trusting in Ed for ten years would be miserable. Each day all of my energy would be put into my eating disorder. Presumably, it would require me to give up any and all dreams. The health complications would compound and eventually leave me very sick. Chances are, I would succumb to my eating disorder before the end of a decade..
I am not on my deathbed now. Because this is true I will always have the chance to turn things around. I can fight. I won’t allow myself to be a statistic who gets swallowed up by this disease. It’s time to take back my life and find hope for the future.
Since drafting this post over 2 weeks ago, a sad situation has transpired that makes her answer all the more real. My closest friend I made in residential is currently on the edge of death due to anorexia. It’s hard to comprehend that the hilarious, sweet, spunky, and sarcastic girl I met is quickly fading away. Right now I am praying for a miracle, for anything to get her into recovery.. ❤
Eating disorders kill. Don’t give yours that opportunity.