To everyone who has stood by me, and continues to hold my hand through it all,
Thank you. Thank you, thank you, thank you. I truly can’t say it enough. Your support is what keeps me going. When I was in residential treatment, there was a woman who sat with us at meals for our first few days, and she would always tell us that eating disorders thrive on secrecy, and that secrets keep us sick. And it’s true. To those of you who check in on me, who listen to me cry and scream and vent and tell you I’m struggling when I really don’t want to, thank you for keeping me accountable and allowing me to tell my truth, instead of hiding it.
Thank you for listening to me when the truth is hard to hear. Thank you for asking me how I’m really doing when I’d rather hide it. Thank you for listening to my little victories, like eating ice cream in program or throwing away clothes that fit my sick body, not my healthy one. Thank you for giving me advice from across the country, going to the doctor with me, and bringing me food. Thank you for sending me quotes and texts to brighten my day, for offering to eat meals with me, and for sitting with me when I’m emotionally drained.
In treatment, I’ve heard over and over that people suffering with eating disorders don’t want to tell anyone they’re struggling because they don’t want to burden them. We all say it. I’ve said it over and over again, and it’s taken me a LONG time to acknowledge that the people standing by me- and I have a really, really incredible support system- are here because they want to be. So mostly, thank you for telling me to stop saying I’m a burden, for caring about what I have to say, and for being here so I no longer have to live in secrecy.
There’s a quote written on a canvas at Renfrew that says “You have to do this on your own, but you don’t have to do it alone.” I have to do this for me. I have to sit down and make every meal, listen to my exercise contract, show up to program and talk and do the work and be vulnerable. But I have support. I have people cheering on my every move, and it makes all the difference. So to those of you who have walked into (and even out of) my life, thank you for not making me walk alone, and thank you for loving me through it all. I’m feeling really, really grateful these days.