Trigger warning: anorexia
People ask me what anorexia is like, "So do you just not like eating then?" Anorexia has stolen me, it's barely about food most of the time, of course food thoughts consume my mind and eating brings anxiety, terror and guilt but there's far more to it than that and this illness is certainly not at all about being thin. It's disconnected me from the world around me, from myself and I don't know who I am anymore. I am living in my body but I am not me. My mind replaced with a tangle of anorexia' screams, rules, orders and my deepest and darkest memories. I've lost my personality, my passions and hobbies. I've lost myself.
Anorexia's screams are so loud, it's unbearable and it's blocking out all other sounds and deafening me from the world around me. I can't hear anyone, I don't know what they are saying. I am being pulled in and totally absorbed by this illness. Anorexia's cold and filthy hands are over my eyes, I can feel the cold, clamminess of them on my face and I can't see who is there, I can't see who I can reach out to ask for help.
It's tarring my memories, dragging it's claws across photographs and leaving deep, black rips through smiling faces and turning colour photographs into black and white pictures, a girl I don't recognise stares back at me with hollow eyes. I can't remember what it's like to feel happy, in fact I'm struggling to believe I ever have felt happiness. Will I ever feel it again?
I lay in a dark room at night, unable to sleep but somehow comforted by the loneliness and the darkness. I only feel like I belong when on my own in the darkness, a whole world around me and that's the only place I feel I can be. I'm losing my voice again, my best bet of communication is through the song lyrics I blast through my headphones, words written by someone else about a totally different situation that seem to fit mine perfectly.
The secrets are eating me up, I'm finding myself sitting inside the four walls of my home as my days pass me by full of suffering, depression and anxiety. I'm sweating. I'm hungry. I'm desperate. I'm gripping on to everything and everyone trying to find the light again. I know I will, I've done it before, I can do it again. Can't I? I'm holding on to every milligram of hope that is left in my life whilst anorexia tries to steal my belief, my hope and my breath. Every other heart beat belongs to anorexia. This illness is slowly winning but I can't let it. I am fighting back.
I wish this illness was just about food but it's far more complex than that, a mix of psychotic and delusional symptoms along with a crushing low mood. The obsessions, the compulsions, the physical agony. It's exhausting. I am trying to survive.