During my time in treatment, I have often been asked to write a thank you letter to my body where I give gratitude for the things it does for me outside of weight and appearance. I love that idea, and the lesson of appreciating all the amazing things my body can do is a critical one. However, there is another letter that I have never been asked to write, that I have come to decide it is equally as important, if not more.
Over the years, through restricting calories, exercising past exhaustion, purging, and self-harming, I have repeatedly hurt my body. My body is incredibly resilient and has never failed me, despite my consistent abuse.
To my body –
For much too long now, I have hurt you in endless ways with little to no remorse. Instead of giving you nourishment, I have fed you on hatred and self-abuse. I have denied you the beauty of smooth ice cream on your tongue or warm pasta in your belly. Instead of giving you rest, I have pushed you well past the point of exhaustion, just to burn one more calorie or to see the number on the scale drop just a tiny bit more. I have moved you out of disgust rather than to enjoy all that you can do for me.
I am sorry. I apologize for all of the abuse that I have put you through. Despite all of the offensive actions I have done against you and vile things I have said to you, you have protected me and stayed resilient. That is amazing, and I need to tell you that I am grateful for your strength.
You are beautiful. You are my vehicle, carrying me through life and allowing me to experience moments like meeting my hero Sara Bareilles, seeing mountains for the first time, hugging my best friends, and countless other experiences.
Day by day, I am trying to do my best to make up for all the pain I have caused you. I try to feed you, not just with food, but with life moments. We are going to be on a journey back to reconciliation, and it will not happen overnight. Thank you for not giving up on me.