This prompt is weirdly apt for me because I wanted to write something about the silence here for the past few days. I've missed out on several days of the challenge consecutively. And it's hard to explain why, because admitting publicly to low moods and feeling emotionally fragile is terrifying. (I do see that I have actually admitted it in that last sentence). How many times when asked 'how are you?' do I/ we say 'fine, thanks' even when fine is far from the truth? I even did it at my last GP appointment; my GP seemed so thrilled that I was fine that I was then unable to tell him how I had been struggling with feeling very low and worthless.
Maybe the difficulties that have prevented me from writing, alongside the realisation that it feels impossible to admit how things really are, point to something about the functionality of EDs: if societal pressures make it difficult to talk about sadness, mental pain, emotional distress, the "obvious" option is to turn that pain inwards even more and to make it tangible in ED symptoms. For one thing that an emaciated body achieves is to communicate distress. When spoken communication has failed, our bodies can graphically illustrate the extremity of our sadness.
Indeed, one of the conversations that I've had with others who've been through treatment with me is that when refeeding has made our bodies look "normal", people assume that everything is ok. For some recovering/ed anorexics, I hope that is true. But for many of us, treating the body is one part of a picture that rarely happens exactly simultaneously with sorting out all the thoughts and crap inside our heads. Someone with a BMI over 20 can be hurting inside as much as someone whose BMI causes doctors to write bed rest plans.
When it's properly 20th May (as opposed to nearly 1am on the 20th before I've actually finished with the 19th), I will try to write the post that I'd planned in my head - I've been wondering why I have not shared my participation in this challenge with all my Facebook friends. Most of them are aware about my ED because I have never tried to hide my experiences. But I think I'm scared of letting them read the very personal thoughts and details of things that have happened...