My Dearest Self,
I know things are tough right now. You’ve somehow lost yourself inside a recurring nightmare. And you have no idea what the future has in store for you – not that you’ve given it much thought. But the time will come.
Right now, you look at yourself in the mirror – only to see an endless list of imperfections. You’ve managed to starve yourself down to a mere eighty-six pounds, but you’re still not happy. Nothing or no one can convince you that you’re destroying yourself.
I wish I could tell you that the pain will be gone soon. Unfortunately, it’s going take a few more years before you find your way – but you do get there. So have faith in yourself and the future.
Because eventually, you do find the strength and courage to overcome your eating disorder. The road to recovery wasn’t easy. But you did it.
And then, at the age of twenty-one, you begin the next chapter in your life – you start university! I know it seems like a pipe dream right now. So on the first day of classes, no one will be more amazed than you.
Life will also bless you with two beautiful daughters. They’re doing great by the way. You’re going to be so proud of them!
Life will also bless you with a husband who still makes you feel special. You’ve been together for almost fifteen years now. Although it doesn’t feel that long.
Your favorite bands are still AC/DC and Pink Floyd. I guess some things don’t change – which reminds me. Along the way, you’ll forget how much you love to write. But never fear, my dearest self. You’re going to remember one day, and end up publishing a book. I know, I’m just as surprised as you by that one. Go figure!
It was a lot of work, and took countless hours to get there – including all the hurdles. But in the end it was worth the effort. It also represents your next giant leap of faith. You’ll have a few of those before now. I’m very grateful to say that each leap was successful.
At some point, you do learn to trust yourself. And you learn to love yourself – although that takes a little longer. Your inner critic finally stopped shouting long enough to hear you. She still likes to hang out, but she’s a lot quieter these days – you’ll see.
Well, I have to go now. You’re pretty busy these days. There’s always something that needs doing.
With all my love,
Your (somewhat) older self
P.S. All those years in university were definitely worth it. You became a teacher!
I’ve always treated my eating disorder as a teenager like a dirty secret. A few years ago, I wrote a poem inspired by my struggle with anorexia. Although when I originally shared the poem, I wouldn’t admit that it was actually based on my own experience. I finally edited the poem, let go the shame – and ended up including it in my first poetry book.
And just in case you might be interested, Finding Their Way Home is now available on goodreads. 🙂 I’m currently updating the Kindle edition to see if I can fix how the preview looks. However, the actual book looks as formatted.
Until next time, be kind to yourself.