I am not Anorexic... and you're not your mental illness either.
I am not anorexic, and I never have been.
I have suffered with anorexia but I am not defined by this, and you are not defined by your mental illness either.
That’s it. That’s the whole post.
Well it would be… except you know I’m incapable of keeping these blog entries short, and besides, I thought it might be useful to unpick this statement a little more!
In the midst of my illness I secretly liked the title of anorexic as it made me feel special… sick… valid… safe. Restriction resulted in me losing my personality and low self esteem and social anxiety made it tempting to hold onto this as a security blanket as it allowed me to exist initially as the skinny girl and then as the ill girl. This meant I didn’t have to face the potential rejection of my true self, or the daughnting task of further self discovery. I was miserable, scared and angry, but at least this could be blamed on anorexia (It was partially responsible but not entirely).
In recovery I am commited to letting go of this identity. I am Maisy, and whilst I don’t always know exactly what this means and often don’t like it, I need to give myself a chance. I’m a daughter, a granddaughter, a sister, a girlfriend, a friend, a dog/hamster/guinea pig owner, a netball lover, a ‘Friends’ fan, a baker, a writer, and so much more. Yes, I have suffered from an eating disorder, and yes I am in recovery, but these things do not define me.
I’m not saying that your struggles have not impacted your life and I’m not saying that they don’t make up part of your identity, I’m just saying you’re more than that. Often we develop eating disorders as toxic coping mechanisms and through this conceal other suffering which in recovery we have the chance to unpick. This takes away from the idealised picture of a consistently positive recovery experience, but in my opinion can actually be more rewarding than the obviously happy moments. I know a few weeks ago I shared my reasons for recovery and I would like to add this now: Recover to discover your true self and have the capacity to grow and evolve.
More from me soon,
Mais// The Recovery Bean <3