I used to not remember the taste of cake

I used to not remember the taste of cake but my tongue was no stranger to coffee, water, and gum. Mood became dependent on the numbers that determined my worth that were constantly floating in my head like clouds on a sunny day. Sunny surface, sunny smile, sunny laugh. But once the dark clouds take over, there is no going back. Soon enough, a Sunday brunch with friends turned into a chore and punishment. Soon enough, my mind was swimming in a pool of math equations. Soon enough, I was so tired of life. So painfully tired. Tired of missing out on plans with friends and family. Tired of basing my day off of a reflected cold pale body in the fun-house mirror that only fed into my body dysmorphia. Tired of going to the gym every day at x time as if there were a  due date. If that due date was passed, my mind would flock with fear and guilt. Angry, sad and upset with my actions that my body somehow craves. It’s an addiction and once you start, it’s impossible to break. 

But you see it does not have to be like this. Walking into my doctor’s appointment on a cold bitter spring day felt like I was walking to my place on death row. Scared that I am getting help and am no longer going to struggle in silence.  No longer hiding from the control and mistrust that my eating disorder had on me. As the diagnosis slipped my doctor’s thin lips, tears the size of waterfalls flooded into my scared sunken eyes. The tears remained stuck, they did not escape my eyes, still holding onto my eating disorder. 

This past summer was prolonged with appointments, doctor’s visits, educating myself, and focusing on recovery. Recovery was so exhausting, hard, and painful; I am not going to lie. I had to remain patient with myself and put all my trust in my doctors/team.  It took me a while to achieve the happiness that my life no longer revolves around toxic behaviors. I put my eating disorder work phone on do not disturb for months, silenced all of my behaviors and moved on. I took the feeling of control and put it into other places in my life that became more important than my body. 

New hobbies were planted in the growing green grass. Reading, art, writing, and self-care. Finding things I enjoy doing outside of my eating disorder felt like a treasure hunt. I gained a better relationship with my family and friends. I gained my radiant smile back and I could hear the laugh I once had before I forgot what cake tastes like. I gained the ability to see the world in bright, vibrant color again. I could go on adventures with my friends without worrying about x,y,z. The dark clouds turned to skies of sunshine and rain showers of happiness. I am not glad I went through this pivotal moment in my life, but I am glad the lessons it’s taught me. No workout, diet, or body trend is worth your #$@& pursuit of happiness. If working out, eating patterns and other behaviors start conflicts in your life, maybe it is time to evaluate yourself. The trauma endured from this time period of my life has only taught me how to better myself and the community around me. You are heard. You are seen. I hear you and I know how incredibly tiring and saddened this experience is making you. 

If you or a loved one is struggling, I strongly encourage you to seek help. Use my story as motivation. Getting help is an incredibly brave thing to do. Nobody said it would be easy, but the sky of raining happiness and radiant sunshine is waiting for you with open arms. The sky of laughs, remembering what cake tasted like, hearing your recovered laugh for the first time, Sunday brunches with your best friends. The sky of endless possibilities that will take you so far in life. I hope this shook you and woke you up from the spell any eating disorder put you on.  Every setback has a greater outcome.