I deeply apologize for how much I have put you through over the past five years. The beginning was the worst. I went from eating a normal diet to cutting you off to nothing but an apple and a few pretzels a day, all while playing and conditioning for volleyball five days a week.
I remember slowly losing energy. Walking became more difficult and headaches became more frequent. My legs were shaky and my skin was pale. My hair was falling out, and I was always freezing. Clothes began not fitting, and my stomach began to hurt more. My mood was so out of whack from pretending I was happy all day at school, that by the time I got home, I was a monster.
All of this was happening, but none of it made me want to stop; it made me want to keep going.
I starved you for days. I would hide my food, the food that you were screaming for. I would not even put a piece of fruit in my body, even though you were crying for any bite of food you could get.
I drowned you in as much water as I could and manipulated you into a malnourished, pale little girl.
I can remember the day you got so mad at me for treating you this way that you shut down on me. That was the day the ambulance had to come and I had to be carried down the stairs and strapped to a gurney because I could not move. I remember them putting the IV in my arm and taking multiple tubes of blood from me and all I could do was hope they wouldn’t try to feed me anything.
Looking back, I understand why you shut down when you did. If you didn’t shut down then, I would have died. You were just trying to help me get the help I needed.
As I was placed in treatment and forced to re-nourish you, I became very upset with you. I had worked so hard to become so unnaturally thin, and you were holding onto every calorie I was forced to consume. I would go to bed bloated and in pain.
Many people don’t know that when you have an eating disorder, you go through a process called “re-feeding” where you learn how to eat again and your body learns how to react to food, almost as if you were eating for the first time. It is a painful process one I wouldn’t wish anyone to go through.
I resented you the most. As my treatment team sat around me as I ate, I was yelling at them but I was mostly just furious with you. You were allowing me to gain weight, so I once again did anything it took to not feed you. I wanted to punish you for not being on my side. I would hide food, throw it away when no one was looking, or feed it to the dog.
I hated you so much, and I am so sorry for that. I should have known better when I began to hear that voice in my head telling me what to do. I should have listened to my doctor and my family when they warned me what could happen. I disrespected you so much, and although I can never take back what I put you through, I can fight my hardest to never let it happen again.
You rebuilt yourself over time and became stronger than ever. You help me walk to class, go to the gym, dance at parties, and most importantly, you help me get out of bed when my mind is telling me not to.
Although you are still in recovery, not yet recovered, I am still amazed at what you have overcome and how strong you are now.
When I look at you in the mirror, sure there are days where I tear you apart for hours, but more importantly there are days where all I see is beauty, and those good days certainly outweigh the bad.
Just know that now, there is lots of love for you,