I’ve had a couple of really solid appointments lately, with both my dietitian and my therapist. Things are starting to slowly fall into place. However, there’s a big, scary thought boiling on the backburner when things start to go well…

Who am I without all of this? Who am I in general?

I’ve had a set of goals–a dream, a passion, a reason for living–since I was only five. I know that I was meant to go into medicine, and that I was meant to help people. That is what I was born to do.

But outside of that, who am I? In some ways, I feel like life since the eating disorder crashed has been a big blur. Clinically, actually, I’ve probably had an eating disorder since I was about six. But when things escalated and crashed right before my freshman year of college, and I began the quick descent into anorexia and bulimia, life just went all into one big blur.

My dietitian and I have spent a lot of time talking about what things used to be like and where I am now. At first, I just didn’t want to talk about it. But, like usual, I eventually realized she was right. Minimizing the past has allowed to be okay with where I am now.  We laugh about it, and she brings up every past behavior (sometimes just to be an ass and prove her point). Restricting? Bingeing? Purging? Chewing/Spitting? Laxatives? Diuretics? Exercise Addiction? Keeping the room cold?
All of it has made me realize how much letting go is similar to grieving, even if you’re letting go of something so painful and terrible.

My sessions, I’m finding lately, have been a time of ultimate release. I let go. I open up, I use my voice, and I speak. I also feel a lot of pain and think more than is comfortable.

I finally trying to be honest with myself and say all of the things that I’ve been so afraid to admit…

The common phrase I’ve heard countless fellow Ed patients utter–“I just want my life back, I just want to be me again,” has a whole new meaning these days.

Who am I without my eating disorder?

Honestly, I’m not sure I know. It’s become such a huge part of my life. Some of it is just instinct now–my mind naturally spinning numbers, always looking for the room to be a little colder than comfortable, constantly moving, trying to sway the caloric balance in “my favor.”

I’m looking forward to figuring it out. Deep down, I know I’m still me. Allison, the alcoholic, anoretic, bulimic child is becoming Alex–the sober, recovering adult. With freedom actually in the distance–I can almost see it–I can’t help but be afraid. Everything that happens from here on out is new. A new experience with new feelings. Seen under a different light, one that is sober, letting go of numbers, and so much wiser.

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